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ITE Interim Statement, Top Right to invest £36m in event arm

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Duncan Painter International events organiser ITE Group says it continues to trade in-line with management expectations, although revenues in the three-month period to 30 June 2012 dipped to £76.1m (2011: £79.4m).

The results were announced in an Interim Management Statement for the period 1 April - 16 July 2012 and incorporate the Group’s third quarter trading period to 30 June 2012.

This year’s result does not include a contribution from the biennial Moscow International Oil and Gas exhibition, but does include first time contributions from Turkeybuild, which the Group acquired in July 2011, and from the spring events of the recently acquired Automotive and Beauty portfolios in Ukraine.

On a like-for-like basis revenues for the third quarter were approximately three per cent lower than the previous year.

The remainder of ITE’s portfolio, excluding Mosbuild, delivered like for like revenue growth of circa six per cent for the quarter.

Mosbuild, the Group’s principal Moscow construction event faced a competitive launch this year and sales of 59,300 sqm were down from 62,800sqm.

Turkeybuild was the first edition under the Group’s 60 per cent ownership and the event and delivered a three per cent increase in space sold (36,100sqm against 35,00sqm in 2011).
The Ukraine first edition shows of the recently acquired Automotive and Beauty performed in line with the Group’s expectations, the organiser claimed.

On 3 April 2012, ITE acquired Beautex based in Kiev for a consideration of €8.6m (£7.2m). €6m was paid in cash on completion with a further payment of up to €2.6m payable over the next two years. Beautex runs two events each year, Intercharm and Beautyexpo, both of which serve the professional beauty trade and cosmetic and aesthetic industry in Ukraine.

During the quarter the Group completed eight exhibition acquisitions and, on 13 July 2012, the Group expanded its reach in the UK fashion sector with the purchase of 100 per cent of the London based premium menswear event Jacket Required.
 
The Group had net debt of £1.7m as at 13 July 2012, after spending circa £17m on acquisitions and deferred consideration during this financial year.

ITE claimed it was making “solid organic growth”, with £163.6m of sales booked for the current financial year (last year: £146.8m).

The owners of Top Right Group, meanwhile, the publishing and events business previously known as Emap, are to inject £36m into the i2i Events Group company. The move confounded many City analysts who have been long predicting a break up and sale.

Existing investors Apax Partners and Guardian Media Group are to stump up the new investment.

Top Right Group claimed its restructure into three separate operating groups, i2i Events, 4C and Emap, is already paying dividends after reporting an eight per cent revenue rise to £148m in the six months to 30 June. Pre-tax profits remained on par with last year’s first half at £53m.

Net debt has also been reduced from £513m in the first quarter of 2011 to £352m in Q2, 2012.
 
Across the restructured business, the i2i Events Group reported a 10 per cent year-on-year increase in revenue, driven by a strong performance across Spring Fair International at The NEC.
 
The company also highlighted its recent Cannes Lions Festival as another strong performer after attracting 23 per cent more delegates this year.
 
The digital information services business, 4C Group, reported a seven per cent revenue rise for the first half of the year, while the Emap publishing business saw growth of two per cent over the same period.

Top Right Group chief executive Duncan Painter said: “Our strategy is clear - to build the platform on which the businesses will grow by investing in them and unlocking their potential.
 
“These results are a good step in the right direction.”
 
“Top Right Group’s brands and businesses are market leaders and we are investing in the company to create value and stimulate growth,” Group Chairman and Apax Partners’ Tom Hall said.
 
“Duncan Painter and his management team have put forward an ambitious growth programme requiring substantial investment in the business over the next four to five years and we are fully behind this.”
 
Do you have news for CN? Email: pcolston@mashmedia.net

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