Analytics and fraud prevention company RELX said it expected profit growth and underlying revenue to be “slightly above historic trends” in its 2021 full-year results.
Following a strong performance in the first six months of 2021, the London-based company saw revenue total £3.39bn, with a constant historical currency growth of four per cent. However this was a three per cent decrease in revenue on the previous year.
Historical growth rates for revenue have been around three to four per cent over recent years. RELX expects 2021 underlying growth rates to be slightly above historical trends due to strong demand for its analytics and fraud prevention services.
In response to its high demand and positive results today, the company formerly known as Reed Elsevier said it will increase the interim dividend to five per cent to 14.3p.
Finance director Nick Luff told reporters, “we have increased the dividend consistently over many years, we were able to do so last year, and clearly in increasing the dividend at this stage, then we would expect to continue that record.”
The company also saw adjusted operating profit increase by 11 per cent to £1bn and adjusted EPS up ten per cent at 40p.
RELX’s growth came from its Risk division, with an underlying profit increase of 12 per cent driven by demand for digital identity solutions, fraud prevention analytics and decision tools which it can run over its extensive data sets.
Demand for such tools increased during the pandemic as more transactions moved online. First-half results were also boosted by the comparison with a disrupted first-half last year.
Chief executive Erik Engstrom said, “we believe that this improvement is a reflection of our continuing strategy of focusing on the organic development of increasingly sophisticated analytics and decision tools that deliver enhanced value to our customers across market segments.”
The FTSE 100 group said their priority is enhancing existing business and generating more organic growth after the disturbances caused by the pandemic, and would not resume its share buyback programme in 2021 whilst leverage remained above historical average.
‘We saw a little bit of recovery from last year due to disruptions but driving the improvement is the rollout of analytics and language tools,” said Luff.
RELX’s shares rose 2.5 per cent, on the news
Full year results for RELX are expected in February.