Compass profit boosted by margin gain, acquisitions

By @ibtimes on

Compass Group , the world's biggest caterer, on Wednesday reported a 9 percent rise in full year underlying operating profit, in line with expectations, benefiting from improved margins and growth through acquisitions.

The company, which provides meals for office workers, members of the armed forces and schoolchildren across the world, made an operating profit of 1.09 billion pounds, up 9 percent and in line with the average forecast, according to a company-supplied poll of 12 analysts.

Compass, which also provides catering services at major sporting events and entertainment venues such as the O2 Arena and Stamford Bridge in London, said revenue increased by almost 10 percent including organic revenue growth of over 5 percent.

Our relentless focus on efficiency has continued and excluding the impact of Japan and restructuring costs, we have increased the underlying margin by 20 basis points, Chief Executive Richard Cousins said in a statement.

The group, which serves around 4 billion meals each year in over 50 countries, also announced the appointment of Dominic Blakemore as finance director and Gary Green and Andy Martin as chief operating officers.

Shares in Compass, which have outperformed the FTSE 100 <.FTSE> by 10 percent since the start of the year, closed on Tuesday at 560 pence, valuing the business at 10.6 billion pounds.

French catering-to-vouchers group Sodexo said in November emerging markets and a recent acquisition in Brazil should underpin earnings growth in 2011-12 and it was ready to cut costs in response to depressed developed economies.

(Reporting by Matt Scuffham; Editing by Kate Holton)

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