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Experian FY19 Pre-tax Profit Up 1%; Hikes Dividend - Quick Facts

Experian plc. (EXPN.L), a global information services company, reported that its profit before tax for the year ended 31 March 2019 increased 1 percent to US$957 million from a restated US$950 million in the previous year, despite an increase in net finance costs of US$99 million.

The increase in finance expense is primarily as a result of an increase in non-cash foreign exchange revaluations on Brazilian real intra-Group funding of US$25 million, and fair value losses on derivatives.

However, profit for the financial year was US$701 million, down from a restated US$783 million last year. Basic earnings per share were 76.9 US cents compared to 85.4 US cents in the prior year.

The company noted that the decline in earnings reflected a higher tax charge, higher finance costs and lower number of shares in issue as a consequence of the company's continuing share repurchase program.

Experian's benchmark earnings per share for the year were 98.0 US cents, an increase of 4 percent at actual exchange rates and 9 percent at constant exchange rates from last year, as the weighted average number of ordinary shares or WANOS reduced to 904 million from 917 million in 2018 due to the company's share repurchase program.

Revenue for the year grew 6 percent to US$4.86 billion from last year's US$4.58 billion. Revenue growth was 9 percent at constant currency, while organic revenue growth was also 9 percent.

The company announced a 4 percent increase in the second interim dividend to 32.5 US cents per ordinary share. Total dividend for fiscal 2019 also increased 4 percent to 46.5 US cents per ordinary share.

Looking ahead, Brian Cassin, Chief Executive Officer said, "With another year of continued investments, FY20 is expected to deliver further strong performance, with organic revenue growth in the 6-8% range, Benchmark EBIT growth at or above revenue growth and strong progress in Benchmark earnings per share."

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