Tuesday 19 January 2021 7:40 am

Experian reports 'better-than-expected' quarter as revenue grows

Credit scoring giant Experian (EXPN) reported a better-than-expected third quarter after a strong performance by its North America division. 

Total revenue at constant exchange rates grew 10 per cent in the three months to the end of December. 

Experian’s North America and Latin America divisions grew 11 and 16 per cent respectively, but the UK and Ireland posted a two per cent decline.  

Investors were pleased with Experian’s performance as shares climbed more than two per cent in early trading.

While still down overall, Experian said the trajectory of its UK B2B business had been helped by new business and transactions reflecting an improved credit supply. 

Its consumer services arm returned to growth with a one per cent rise in organic revenue. 

In North America, which represents 63 per cent of group revenue, total revenue growth soared 11 per cent which Experian said was helped by its acquisition of Tapad in November. 

B2B revenue grew six per cent helped by the “ongoing strength” in mortgage volumes and Experian Ascend. This helped to offset a dip in credit reference volumes in favour of unsecured lending due to the pandemic. 

Mirroring the UK, consumer services performed well with organic revenue soaring 11 per cent as free memberships reached 38m. 

“Experian is performing very well, even in the exceptional circumstances created by the pandemic, and we expect to deliver a strong performance for this financial year,” chief executive Brian Cassin said.

“This again illustrates the resilience of our business. We remain highly focused on investing to sustain this performance and to take full advantage of the recovery when it comes.” 

The company forecasts organic revenue growth for the next quarter to be between three and five per cent. 

“There is little doubt that the long term future of credit information and data analytics is assured, and Experian has a large presence in a number of geographies,” said Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor.

“The performance of the business has meant that the company has comfortably kept its head above water during a challenging year, while any economic recovery should provide a springboard for further growth.”