Getlink: Robust 2019 Annual Results

27/02/2020 - 07:30
  • Revenue stable at €1.085 billion;
  • EBITDA down 2%[1] to €560 million, in line with announced objectives;
  • Strong growth of 20% in consolidated net profit to €159 million[2];
  • A 14% increase in the dividend will be proposed at the next AGM on 30 April 2020, to €0.41 per share, bringing the total amount returned to shareholders, including share-buy-backs, to €1.4 billion since 2008.

Jacques Gounon, Chairman and Chief Executive of the Group said: “Getlink has achieved its highest net result since 2007 on a like-for-like basis. The Group performed robustly in 2019, in line with our forecasts and in line with market expectations, despite a changing and complex environment.”

 

  • 2020 financial objectives
    • 2020 dividend in respect of the 2019 financial year: €0.41 per share subject to approval at the AGM on 30 April 2020, an increase of €0.05 per share;
    • EBITDA[3]: €580million based on taking a prudent view of the current risk from the COVID-19 virus.
  • Confirmed 2022 horizon
    • EBITDA above €735 million;
    • Dividend increase of €0.05 per share per year.

 

ANNUAL HIGHLIGHTS

  • Group 
    • Settlement with the UK Secretary of State for Transport totalling £33 million (€38 million) of which £11 million has been received.
    • Change to the governance structure from 1 July 2020, with the appointment of Yann Leriche as Chief Executive Officer and Jacques Gounon as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
  • Eurotunnel 
    • In 2019, Eurotunnel Shuttles transported more than 2.6 million passenger vehicles and nearly 1.6 million trucks;
    • Yield increase of 3%, in line with the quality of service strategy and premium policy;
    • The Le Shuttle and Le Shuttle Freight services confirmed their position as leading market players on the Short Straits, with market shares of 56.9% for the car activity and 40.4% for the truck activity;
    • A new record for Eurostar which carried more than 11 million passengers in 2019. This is driven by the development of the London – Amsterdam service;
    • €30 million investment in new infrastructure in preparation for Brexit (Pit-Stops, French e-gates, customs and Sanitary and Phytosanitary control centre (SPS), export parking, Fréthun scanner) and smart border technology.
  • Europorte  
    • Europorte recorded good growth in annual revenue, up 4% to €126.5 million, despite the difficult end to the year impacted by SNCF strikes;
    • Europorte achieved a substantial EBITDA of €24 million;
    • Europorte recorded a positive net profit before tax, confirming the profitability of this activity.
  • ElecLink

The IGC has announced that it has received the final dossier, and that it intends to take its final decision on authorising the installation of the cable in the Tunnel in April 2020.

 

FINANCIAL RESULTS

The Group’s consolidated revenue for the 2019 financial year amounts to €1.085 billion, a very slight increase compared to 2018.

Consolidated EBITDA was in line with guidance at €560 million, down €12 million compared to 2018 at a constant exchange rate.

Operating profit was €409 million, up €13 million.

The Group’s consolidated net profit for the 2019 financial year was €159 million compared to €132 million in 2018, a strong increase of 20%.

The cost of net financial debt fell by €14 million to €257 million due mainly to the favourable impact of lower British and French inflation rates on the cost of the index-linked tranche of the debt.

Cash held at the end of December 2019 amounted to €525 million.

 

OBJECTIVES

Confident in the robustness of its economic model and the solid results in 2019, the Group confirms its intention to pursue its dividend policy in the service of its shareholders. Accordingly, it will propose at the AGM to increase the dividend to €0.41 per share for the 2019 financial year, an increase of 14% compared to 2018.

In an economic context that is still uncertain following the UK’s exit from the European Union on 31 January 2020 and with possible consequences of the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, the Group has set a financial target for a 2020 EBITDA of €580 million at an exchange rate of £1=€1.14 and on a like-for-like basis. 

The uncertain short-term environment does not diminish the Group’s confidence in the soundness of its various businesses and their growth potential in the medium- and long-term. The Group maintains its objective of exceeding €735 million in EBITDA by 2022 (at £1=€1.14) following the entry into service of the ElecLink electricity interconnector mid-2021 or shortly thereafter.

Footnotes

 

  1. ^ [1] All comparisons with the 2018 income statement are based on the average exchange rate for 2019 of £1 = € 1.14.
  2. ^ [2] Of which €38 million (£33 million) in respect of the settlement agreement between the UK Secretary of State for Transport and Eurotunnel.
  3. ^ [3] At the rate of £1 = €1.14 and current scope.