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Begbies warns of challenging year ahead

BUSINESS RECOVERY specialist Begbies Traynor is braced for a difficult year as it continues to suffer from lower levels of corporate insolvencies, executive chairman Ric Traynor [pictured] will tell shareholders today.

At its annual general meeting, Traynor will outline the insolvency expert’s financial performance in the first four current months of the year and will warn that the firm’s full year results will be “heavily dependent” on trading in the second half of the year.

“The first half, which includes the quieter summer months, is a relatively slow trading period, with the bias of activity expected towards the second half,” Traynor will tell the meeting. “This expectation remains unchanged following the first four months of the year, in line with the group’s typical seasonal trading patterns.”

Market conditions remain challenging for insolvency practitioners, with the government insolvency statistics worse than expected. An 8% decline was reported in the number of corporate insolvency appointments to 8,948 in the first half of calendar year 2014 compared to 9,727 in the same period of 2013.

In July, Begbies revealed that revenues fell to £45.8m from £51.1m, while adjusted pre-tax profit fell to £5m from £6.7m for the year to 30 April 2014.

Traynor will add today that he is confident of a busier second half and that the firm is financially well-positioned.

“With the benefit of a strong financial position and committed bank facilities, we are well placed to continue to take advantage of opportunities to enhance the business through both organic investments and selective acquisitions,” he will say.

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