Sodexo serves up 23% jump in first-half net profit
Catering giant Sodexo, which provides canteen services from government departments to oil rigs, said Thursday its first-half net profits rose by 23.4 percent to 343 million euros ($365 million).
Sales rose by 7 percent to 9.93 billion euros in the six months to the end of February, or by 2.2 percent when currency changes and other changes are stripped out.
Operating profit excluding exceptional items and currency effects rose by 8.6 percent to 620 million euros, while the operating margin increased by 0.3 percentage points to 6.2 percent, thanks to cost cutting and better performance at its on-site service unit.
Sodexo is one of the largest catering and facilities management companies in the world, with 420,000 employees in 80 countries.
"The results for the first half of fiscal 2015 are in line with our expectations," chief executive Michel Landel said in a statement.
The company confirmed its objectives of a 3 percent rise in sales and a 10 percent rise in operating profit stripped of exceptional items and currency effects.
Landel said other corporate services, which accounts for 27 percent of total sales, was expanding much much faster than food services as clients were searching for integrated management of a range of services, and would eventually rise to 50 percent of sales.
Excluding exchange rate and other effects, overall corporate services revenues rose by 3.9 percent to 4.8 billion.
The health care and seniors segment edged up 0.01 percent to 2.3 billion euros, while education services fell 0.4 percent to 2.4 billion.
Revenues grew the fastest in Britain and Ireland, where they jumped by 8.4 percent to 821 million euros.
Meanwhile in continental Europe they slid by 0.3 percent to 2.9 billion euros.
In North America sales rose by 1.5 percent to 4.0 billion euros and in the rest of the world by 4.1 percent to 1.7 billion euros.
© 2015 AFP