1pm plc (LON:OPM), the AIM listed independent specialist finance provider, has provided the following statement ahead of its Annual General Meeting which is being held at 10.00am today. It also gives notice of the date of the Company’s 2021 Interim Results Announcement.
The Group’s trading results in the first four months of the current financial year ending 31 May 2021 continue to be in line with management’s internal budget expectations. This demonstrates continuing positive trading momentum and an improving trend in business activity since the downturn caused by the impact of Covid-19 in the period through to the end of May 2020. Since that point, the Group has experienced strong new business origination, has seen continued revenue growth month on month and has generated increasing profits in each of the four months of trading since the last year-end as it continues to gradually return to pre-Covid-19 trading levels.
In the current economic environment the performance of the Group’s lending book and the resilience of its balance sheet are paramount. The Group is therefore pleased to report that arrears have been reduced by more than £5m since its financial year end on 31 May 2020. Furthermore, the rate of new arrears has continued to reduce month on month, trending back towards the pre-Covid-19 levels from the peak experienced at 31 May 2020. The Group has also seen the level of write-offs in these four months remain relatively static and the historical rate of recoveries on amounts previously written-off being maintained at 70 to 80 per cent. of the impaired value. The Group’s balance sheet continues to demonstrate its resilience with both net tangible assets (“NTA”) and cash having increased from the 31 May 2020 levels with unaudited NTA as at 30 September 2020 now in excess of £28m and unaudited cash balances as at the same date in excess of £2m.
While the economic outlook is extremely difficult to predict at the moment this continued de-risking of the lending book and steady progress back towards historic levels of performance is considered grounds for cautious optimism by the Board.
Notice of Interim Results
The Group expects to announce its unaudited interim results for the six-month period to 30 November 2020 on Tuesday 19 January 2021 and, as previously indicated, expects to be in a position to reassess the reinstatement of market guidance and to provide an update on its dividend policy at that time.