Investec asset management demerger on track as operating profit rises

updated: 16 May 2019 at 9:08am Author: Michele Maatouk

(Sharecast News) - Investec posted a 9.4% jump in full-year adjusted operating profit on Thursday as it said the demerger of the asset management business was on track.

In the year to 31 March 2019, group adjusted operating profit rose to £664.5m from £607.5m in the same period a year ago. The company's combined South African business saw adjusted operating profit grow 1.8% in rand, while UK and other businesses combined saw profit increase 36.1% in sterling.

Investec said the group results were hit by the 4.8% depreciation of the South African rand:sterling exchange rate over the year. At neutral currency, group adjusted operating profit was up 12.6%.

Adjusted operating profit in the asset management arm increased 07% to £179.4m, with earnings impacted by lower performance fees in South Africa and higher costs in the UK. In the bank and wealth business, meanwhile, profit rose 13% to £485.2m.

Investec said it's on track with the proposed demerger and separate listing of Investec Asset Management, which should enhance the long-term prospects of both businesses. In addition, the company expressed confidence that the businesses are well positioned to meet their growth objectives and deliver long-term shareholder returns.

It also said it has decided to discontinue the loss-making Click & Invest online investment platform, in line with its commitment to manage costs and allocate capital effectively.

Joint chief executives Fani Titi and Hendrik du Toit said: "We are implementing our strategy to simplify, focus and grow with discipline. We are committed to the demerger and listing of the asset management business and the positioning of the bank and wealth business for long-term growth. In spite of a challenging operating environment, these results speak to strong support from our clients."