Compass hikes divi after strong year

Compass reports another strong year with organic revenue growth of 5% converted into profit and cash which was reinvested in the business or returned to shareholders.

Underlying revenues rose to £19.9bn with operating profits up 5.6% at £1,445 million and earnings per shareup 7.8% at 61.1p.

The full year dividend of 31.7p is up 7.8%.

On a statutory basis, revenue, operating profit and earnings per share benefitted by around 6% from the translational effect of weaker sterling.

Group chief executive Richard Cousins said: "Compass has had another strong year. Performance in North America continues to be excellent, and we are pleased with our progress in Europe. In the Rest of World, the performance is mixed, with the impact of the cyclical downturn in our commodity related business offsetting reasonable progress elsewhere.

"Our expectations for 2017 are positive, with growth weighted to the second half of the year. The pipeline of new contracts is good and our focus on organic growth, efficiencies and cash gives us confidence in another year of delivery.

"In the longer term, we remain excited about the significant structural growth opportunities globally and the potential for further revenue growth, margin improvement, and continued returns."