Portfolio

Halma delivers record first-half results

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Tuesday 19 Nov 2019

Halma delivers record first-half results

(Sharecast News) - Safety, health and environmental technology group Halma reported record first-half results on Tuesday thanks to revenue growth in all of its major regions and business sectors.
In the six months to the end of September, adjusted pre-tax profit rose 14% to £128.8m on revenue £653.7m, up 12% on the previous year. The interim dividend was lifted 7% to 6.54p a share.

Halma said it saw "strong" growth in Fire Detection, People and Vehicle Flow and Elevator Safety, and across its four major regions. The USA performed strongly on an organic constant currency basis, with revenue up 13% against 24% organic constant currency growth in the first half of last year, driven by strong growth in the Elevator Safety, Fire Detection and the People and Vehicle Flow segments, with the latter benefiting from new product innovation.

In Europe and the UK, the group performed "well", with broadly spread growth across the business segments. In other regions, however, revenue fell due to less project-based business in the Middle East.

Halma said acquisitions made an "excellent" contribution to growth, particularly in Asia Pacific, the USA and Mainland Europe.

Chief executive officer Andrew Williams said: "Halma made good progress in the first half, delivering record revenue, profit and dividends, while increasing strategic investment to remain well positioned in global niche markets which have resilient, long-term growth drivers.

"Our strong purpose and culture, our portfolio and geographic diversity together with our agile business model are enabling us to deliver a good performance in varied market conditions and to sustain growth and returns over the longer term."

The company said order intake since the period end has continued to be ahead of revenue and order intake last year.

"Halma remains on track to make further progress in the second half of the year and deliver another good full year performance," said Williams.

At 1130 GMT, the shares were up 11.5% at 2,116p.

Shore Capital said: "In our view, Halma is a great quality business that operates in secular growth markets with long-term drivers (increasing: health and safety regulation, demand for healthcare services in developing economies and demand for life-critical resources) and strong margins but the valuations continue to look stretched with a significant premium against peers.

"We believe the valuation reflects expected growth rates and the high-quality nature of the business and such we retain hold."

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