Hays, the FTSE recruitment giant, is planning to return nearly £170m in dividends to its shareholders, as “acute skills shortages” mean the company can hike its fees.
Bosses plan to dish out some £47.3m in core dividends, and a special dividend of £121.2m, rewarding shareholders with “significant cash” worth £168.5m, chief executive Alistair Cox said in a statement.
“Performance in all regions was excellent. Our actions to capitalise on long-term structural opportunities, acute skill shortages and strong markets, supported by our ability to increase fee margins and the benefits of wage inflation,” he continued. “We have a clear strategy to continually build market-leading positions in the most attractive structural growth markets, which are characterised by ongoing skill shortages.
“Our focus is now on leveraging the investments we have made and increasing our already strong consultant productivity.”
Fees in the UK and Ireland have risen 31 per cent in the 12-months to 30 June, driven by booming interest in the private and temp sectors, while they have hit a record in Hay’s largest business in Germany.
The company’s revenue grew a third and spilled over £1.1bn over the past year. While operating profit has also surged nearly 130 per cent in the period, from £95.1m last year to a little over £210m, despite inflationary pressures.