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Dignity Plc 2016 Profit Rises; Revises Medium-term Target - Quick Facts

Dignity plc (DTY.L) reported profit before tax of 71.2 million pounds for the 53 week period ended 30 December 2016 compared to 69.0 million pounds for the 52 week period ended 25 December 2015. Profit to equity shareholders was 57.2 million pounds or 114.6 pence per share compared to 56.9 million pounds or 114.5 pence per share. Underlying profit before tax increased to 75.2 million pounds from 72.2 million pounds. Underlying earnings per share was 119.0 pence compared to 114.1 pence.

Revenue was 313.6 million pounds for the 53 week period compared to 305.3 million pounds for the 52 week prior year period.

The Board of Dignity plc proposed a final dividend of 15.74 pence per Ordinary Share, bringing the total dividend for the year to 23.59 pence; an increase of 10 percent on the previous year.

Dignity plc reported that its trading in the first few weeks of 2017 has however continued to be strong. As a result, the Board's expectations are unchanged for the year.

Given the increased size of the Group and increasing competition in each of the markets, the Board has revised its medium-term target underlying EPS growth rate to eight percent per annum from the current 10 percent. The Board noted that it remains positive about the future prospects for the Group.

Mike McCollum, Chief Executive of Dignity plc said: "Looking into the future, we anticipate further engagement with the Scottish and Westminster parliaments, as we believe regulation of the funeral and pre-arranged funeral markets is necessary to ensure every family receives minimum standards of care from appropriate facilities. We also expect to invest more in digital technologies that will help our clients and also act as a source of new business for the Group."

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