November 7, 2017 / 9:18 AM / 7 months ago

Britain's G4S lowers revenue outlook with no growth in Middle East, India

EDINBURGH (Reuters) - The world’s largest security group G4S downgraded its revenue growth outlook for the rest of the year on Tuesday, flagging a flat performance in the Middle East and India.

FILE PHOTO - A G4S security guard watches over some of the courts at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, in London June 26, 2013. REUTERS/Eddie Keogh/File Photo

The UK outsourcing group said trading for the first nine months of the year was in line with expectations, but it now expected 2017 organic revenue growth of between 3 and 4 percent and “good” profit growth. Earlier in the year it had said full-year revenue growth would be 4 to 6 percent.

G4S, which provides outsourced services such as guarding, aviation screening and mobile patrols, said ‍organic revenue growth was 4.4 percent in the nine-month period, with expansion in all regions except the Middle East and India.

Those regions were already contracting at mid-year and G4S’s shares have since fallen 17 percent versus a flat performance for Britain’s FTSE 100

Bid pipeline and contract wins were “encouraging”, however, and net debt to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation were seen at 2.5 times or lower by year-end.

The company, whose main growth engine is now the United States, said systems and technology-enabled security was performing well in key markets and accounted for over 1.7 billion pounds ($2.23 billion) in annualised revenue, up from 1.5 billion in December.

Its retail cash solutions business were also expanding well.

G4S has been reducing its dependency on Britain after it overstretched on sensitive loss-making government contracts. Britain and Ireland now provide 15 percent of G4S’s revenue versus 22 percent in 2013.

It also had problems earlier this year when the head of a G4S-run immigration unit in Britain resigned following allegations of bullying and abuse at the centre.

($1 = 0.7610 pounds)

Reporting by Elisabeth O'Leary, Editing by Paul Sandle and Edmund Blair

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