Full Year Results for the year ended 30 April 2016

19 July 2016

Gateley (Holdings) Plc

(“Gateley” or the “Group”)

Full Year Results for the year ended 30 April 2016

“Strong trading performance”

Gateley (AIM:GTLY), a leading national full-service commercial law firm, reports its audited full year results for the year ended 30 April 2016, which constitutes the Group’s maiden annual results as a Plc following admission of the Group to trading on AIM on 8 June 2015. The comparative period results represent the LLP’s results for year ended 30 April 2015 on a pro-forma basis.*

Financial Highlights
· Revenue increased 10.2% to £67.1m (2015: £60.9m)
· Adjusted EBITDA** increased 13.3% to £12.8m (pro-forma 2015: £11.3m)
· Profit before tax increased 12.2% to £11.0m (pro-forma 2015: £9.8m)
· Basic EPS increased 5.7% to 8.18p (pro-forma 2015: 7.74p)
· Proposed total year dividend of 5.639p (being 1.895p paid Interim dividend and 3.764p proposed final dividend) (pro-forma 2015: 5.15p)
· Cash held at the period end increased from £2.7m to £9.8m, whilst net cash flow from operating activities was strong at 122% of profit after tax before one off transitional changes
* Pro-forma comparative results are being used within this announcement to reflect the position of our previous LLP group structure as if the current Plc group structure had been in place during the prior year
** Adjusted and pro-forma EBITDA excludes income or expenses that relate to non-underlying items

 

Operational Highlights
· Successful IPO in June 2015 raised £30m
· Acquisition of Gateley Capitus Limited (including the appointment of three director shareholders)
· Opened new office in Reading (including the appointment of four partners to date)
· Utilisation of fee generating staff 89% (April 2015: 85%)
· 12 new lateral partner hires since 1 May 2015. Four internal promotions to partner together with 18 fee earner promotions on 1 May 2016
· Staff numbers increased 5.3% from 606 to 638
· Advised on 212 (2015: 237) corporate deals with an aggregate value in excess of £1.76bn (2015: £1.6bn)
· Strong balance sheet, strong cash generation and new long term bank facilities provide a robust platform for growth and a smooth transition from the previous LLP to the new Plc corporate structure

Michael Ward, CEO of Gateley, commented:
“I am pleased to report that the Group has performed well in its first year as a public company. In a market that continues to be challenging the Board has remained focused on the execution of our stated strategy of long term organic and acquisitive growth. The Group has made excellent progress since our successful AIM admission, all of which has been made possible by the positive reaction to our flotation by our diversified client base and excellent staff.

Trading in the second half of the financial year ended 30 April 2016 was robust and we are pleased to report that trading in the first two months of the current financial year has been encouraging. We are confident that our business is well balanced and resilient and we remain focused on delivering another year of growth in our core services, whilst continuing to look for complementary acquisitions.”

Chairman’s Statement

I am delighted with the performance of Gateley in its first year as a public company. In a legal marketplace that is continually evolving, the Group has delivered a record set of results. I congratulate our CEO Michael Ward and his team for successfully managing the transition from an LLP to a Plc.

When we came to market in June 2015 the Board outlined a strategy to maximise the opportunities presented from the changing legal marketplace and to use our new and more flexible Plc structure to capitalise thereon. The growth strategy was based on three key pillars: to Differentiate (through our comprehensive service offering and service ethic), Diversify (through acquisition of additional complementary non-legal businesses in addition to organic legal service expansion through sector specialism or geographically) and finally to Incentivise (offering wider and earlier equity to staff). I believe that in the year ended 30 April 2016 through, strong organic growth, the acquisition of Gateley Capitus, the development of equity participation schemes within the business and continued strong client focus, we have delivered on our aims for the year and have begun our journey as a Plc well.

These strong results, together with the successful IPO and the encouraging start the Group has made in its journey have also helped raise our profile and enhance our brand, differentiating us from our competitors and attracting quality staff who are interested in benefiting from the opportunities provided by a structure which we believe is far better suited to the legal landscape of today. As we continue to build further scale, breadth and depth into our business, we will maintain our disciplined approach to optimising the growth opportunities we see for the Group, whilst keeping our focus on meeting the diverse needs of our client base.

The Board and senior management team have the requisite leadership, experience and desire to be able to achieve this and we continue to look forward with confidence. The Board is pleased to propose a final dividend of 3.764p per share, subject to shareholder approval at the Annual General Meeting on 21 September 2016.

Nigel Payne
Chairman
18 July 2016

Enquiries:

Gateley (Holdings) Plc

Nick Smith, Acquisitions Director and Head of Investor Relations
+44 20 7653 1665
Kathryn Hobbs, Interim Head of Communications
+44 121 234 0084

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe – Nominated adviser and broker
+44 20 7894 7000
David Foreman, Philip Davies, Michael Reynolds (Corporate Finance)
Caspar Shand Kydd, Mark Westcott (Sales)

Buchanan – Financial PR adviser
+44 20 7466 5000
Henry Harrison-Topham, Mark Edwards, Jamie Hooper, Jane Glover
Gateley@buchanan.uk.com