(Adds details, shares, analyst comment)
March 2 French outdoor advertising company
JCDecaux on Thursday reported a smaller than expected
drop in full-year operating profit, helping to send its shares
to an eight-month high.
The family-run company, which generates around half its
revenue in China, France and the UK, has been battling an
economic slowdown in China as well as uncertainty linked to the
French presidential elections and Brexit.
The company reported a 7-percent decrease in full year
adjusted operating profit to 646.5 million euros ($681 million),
ahead of analysts' expectations due to a better-than-expected
performance by the transport division.
The transport division reported full year adjusted operating
profit of 182.0 million euros, down 9.7 percent. The drop was
less than analysts had predicted due to the ramp up of airport
contracts in North America.
Shares in the company were up more than 4 percent by 1044
GMT having earlier hit an 8-month high.
Jefferies analysts, which have a "hold" rating on the
stock, said that the "slightly negative" first quarter adjusted
organic revenue growth target was better than their own
Overall the company said its profitability was affected by
integration costs related to its acquisition of CEMUSA, an
outdoor advertising group with operations in Spain, the United
States, Brazil and Italy, as well as the contract structure of
its advertising franchise with Transport for London (TfL).
($1 = 0.9493 euros)
(Reporting by Alan Charlish in Gdynia. Editing by Jane