Compass sees boost from new business wins

COMPASS Group, the world&rsquo;s biggest caterer, has seen a 14 per cent growth in yearly earnings per share on the back of new business wins, cost cuts and a weak pound, sending its shares to a 12-month high.<br /><br />The company, which feeds office and factory workers, soldiers and schoolchildren, said it expected underlying sales to grow around one per cent in the year to the end of September. It said favourable currency moves would add around &pound;120m to annual operating profit.<br /><br />Compass said contract wins with the likes of Google in Australia and Electrolux in Sweden would help push full-year margins up 60 basis points and it expected demand to pick up in coming months.<br /><br />&ldquo;Encouragingly, throughout the year the level of new contract wins and underlying retention has remained strong,&rdquo; the group said in a statement. &ldquo;In the medium-term, a combination of the growth in outsourcing and global economies recovering should produce an upswing in demand.&rdquo;<br /><br />&ldquo;Comments on organic revenue growth and margins should please investors, as should its confidence about driving further efficiencies,&rdquo; said Tony Shepard at Charles Stanley.