BRUNEL INTERNAT (AMS:BRNL) Brunel International NV: Strong start in all regions

Transparency directive : regulatory news

04/05/2018 08:00

Amsterdam, 4 May 2018
Key points Q1 2018

  • Growth in revenue and EBIT
  • Revenue up by 9% to EUR 214 million
  • EBIT up by 26% to EUR 7.2 million
  • Strategy update
  • Change in segment reporting
Brunel International (unaudited)  
P&L amounts in EUR million    
  Q1 2018 Q1 2017 Change %  
Revenue   213.8   196.4 9% a
Gross Profit   50.0   47.2 6%  
Gross margin 23.4% 24.0%   
Operating costs   42.8   41.5 3% b
EBIT   7.2   5.7 26%  
EBIT % 3.4% 2.9%   
Average directs   11,228   8,984 25%  
Average indirects   1,527   1,460 5%  
Ratio direct / Indirect   7.4   6.2   
a 11 % like-for-like  
b 5 % like-for-like  
Like-for-like is measured excluding the impact of currencies and acquisitions  

Change in segment reporting
In accordance with Brunel`s regional approach we have adjusted our management structure. The main regions are: DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Czech Republic), The Netherlands, Americas, Australasia, Europe & Africa, Middle East & India, Russia & Caspian area and South East Asia. This is the basis on which internal reports are provided to the Chief Executive Officer for assessing performance and determining the allocation of resources within the Group.

From Q1 2018 onwards, all regions exceeding 10% of total revenue or EBIT are reported separately. The remaining regions are combined in Rest of World. Main changes in our segment reporting are:

  • Austria, Switzerland and Czech Republic are now included in DACH and were previously reported under Other Europe.
  • Australasia and Middle East & India were previously reported under Global Business.
  • The other regions within Global Business, and Belgium, are now reported under Rest of World.

The change in segment reporting has no impact on the net profit or loss of the Group. To enable comparisons with prior period performance, the 2017 Q1 segment information is updated accordingly.

Q1 2018 results 

Revenue Q1 2018 Q1 2017 Change % LFL %
DACH region   64.1   61.3 5% 5%
The Netherlands   56.2   47.9 17% 17%
Australasia   27.7   24.0 15% 1%
Middle East & India   19.2   16.0 20% 38%
Rest of world   46.6   47.2 -1% 8%
Total   213.8   196.4 9% 11%
Like-for-like is measured excluding the impact of currencies and acquisitions

Revenue per working day in The Netherlands increased by 19%. Gross margin adjusted for working days is 31.1% in Q1 2018 (Q1 2017: 30.0%). Headcount as of 31 March was 2,424 (2017: 2,129).

Working days The Netherlands:

  Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 FY
2018 64 61 65 64 254
2017 65 61 65 63 254

Revenue per working day in the DACH region increased by 8%. The gross margin adjusted for working days is 34.0% (2017: 35.9%). The decrease in margin is the result of the impact of new legislation and a lower productivity in our automotive competence center. Headcount as of 31 March was 2,546 (2017: 2,381).

Working days Germany:

  Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 FY
2018 63 60 65 62 250
2017 65 59 65 60 249

In the region Middle East & India we continue to see the results of our diversification efforts, especially in Kuwait and Qatar.

Australasia includes the impact of the acquisition of SES Labour Solutions in Q3 2017.

All regions included in Rest of World, except for South East Asia, have achieved growth in Q1. In South East Asia we have not yet been able to compensate for the significant projects that were completed in the first half of 2017.

Our operating costs increased, however the cost base for our existing business has decreased. The increase is the result of investments in digital solutions, acquisitions made in 2017 and the start-up of our construction and maintenance activities in the USA.

EBIT Q1 2018 Q1 2017 Change % LFL %
DACH region   5.7   7.4 -23% -23%
The Netherlands   4.2   2.5 68% 68%
Australasia   0   -0.2 -100% -103%
Middle East & India   1.7   0.4 325% 377%
Rest of world -1.9 -1.9 0% -3%
Unallocated   -2.5   -2.5 0% 0%
Total   7.2   5.7 26% 24%
Like-for-like is measured excluding the impact of currencies and acquisitions

EBIT increased by 26% despite an adverse working day effect in The Netherlands and the DACH region.

We expect growth to accelerate in the course of this year, and profitability to improve.

Jilko Andringa, CEO of Brunel International N.V. on Q1 2018 results: "The strong growth we expected is starting to show in most regions. I am very happy to report growth and improved profitability. Especially the performance in The Netherlands and Middle East stands out. This is the result of the initiatives we have started, both in entering new markets as well as in investments in digital tools and solutions. I am confident the initiatives will contribute to continued and accelerated growth, also in other regions. This growth is helped by the healthy economic conditions in our main markets."

Strategy update

Jilko Andringa, CEO of Brunel International N.V. on Strategy Update: "Over the last 5 months I have had the opportunity to be introduced and connected to the special elements of the Brunel brand, culture and our internal and external teams. I recognise the values Entrepreneurship, Integrity, Result-Driven and Passion for People in our day to day strive to connect specialists to clients. Together with our CFO Peter de Laat and the leadership team, we updated the strategy based on external trends, internal capabilities and our combined experiences. I look forward to get the updated elements of the strategy in place and operational."

Brunel`s brand is a clear differentiator. Clients and employees recognise Brunel as an entrepreneurial partner, with high ethical standards, created and operated by creative and result-driven colleagues who have a `passion for people`. To serve our local and multinational clients with their global/local needs, Brunel created a global footprint, with a regional structure for local relevance and entrepreneurship. Through the cycle this footprint has been kept in place for the biggest part and is now an important pillar for future growth.

It is our ambition to create high satisfaction among our direct and indirect employees and at our clients. This stakeholder satisfaction should lead to record revenue and profit levels. To reach these goals we will follow the line of the existing Brunel strategy and approach, with some clear new accents:

Diversification: Leading specialist in chosen global specialisms
We diversified our business utilising our capabilities and infrastructure to find new growth opportunities and to decrease our dependency on the oil & gas market. This resulted in promising positions in specific specialisms, such as mining, infrastructure, construction & maintenance and renewable energy. We will use these local capabilities to create a network of global specialisms. We will invest in growing our differentiators and in bringing local expertise from one region to other regions. This could be accelerated through add-on acquisitions like the one we did last year with SES (mining) in Australia.

Brunel professional communities
To attract the best talent for our clients we will invest in specialised communities where our (future) employees can find their next exciting job, where they can up-skill themselves to grow their employability in the fast changing world of work and where they can connect with peers. The Brunel Academy is an important initiative in this focus area.

Quality, speed and productivity, e.g., lean approach for higher quality to client and lower cost for delivery, digital process tools, etc.
Quality and speed of our activities remain an important differentiator in our markets. We have a strong IT infrastructure. This infrastructure, combined with digital process tools and artificial intelligence will enable us to improve the speed and quality of our services, whilst increasing efficiency we will update the quality and efficiency of our processes and solutions through `lean` methodology.

Digital roadmap to offer higher quality to clients & professionals
Brunel in The Netherlands has invested significantly in creating and fine tuning digital capabilities. These capabilities vary from advanced sourcing solutions to online platforms to bring clients and candidates together. We are now at a stage that these solutions can gradually be implemented globally and developed further.

Client Management to serve new and existing clients in more regions
Brunel offers a diverse portfolio of services globally. Many of our multinational clients we serve in a limited number of countries or in specific specialties. We will use these strong local relationships to expand our service delivery to more regions and verticals.                

Sustainability Agenda
Together with our specialists we are generally in a privileged position. To give back to society, we will use our capabilities and expertise to help people with a bigger challenge on the labour market. 

Talent and Management Development
To attract and develop the best internal talent we will create a human resources agenda that drives a broad portfolio of internal initiatives like talent development, management development programs, diversity agenda, succession planning and employee engagement.

Global and Regional Steering

The global leadership team built and will execute the above strategy. This team consists of the regional directors of the largest regions complemented with the client management, vertical, human resources, marketing, IT, finance and legal leaders. These leaders report directly to the board that consists of the CEO and CFO. In our management reporting, we will follow this regional steering model. This means that we will stop reporting `Global Business` and start with reporting our largest regions separate (DACH, The Netherlands, Middle East & India, Australasia, and Rest of the World).

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