Markets News

UPDATE 1-HomeServe posts stronger adjusted profit, raises dividend

(Adds CEO comment, shares, background, outlook)

Nov 17 (Reuters) - HomeServe Plc on Tuesday forecast annual profit ahead of prior expectations as a surge in demand for home remodelling during lockdowns helped the British home repair company post a stronger first-half profit and raise its dividend by 7%.

The Walsall, UK-based company also said it was confident of delivering revenue growth for the full year, sending shares 3.5% higher in early trade.

“The latest wave of lockdowns has made no fundamental difference to our operations, and the good news for us and our customers is that engineers can continue to work in peoples’ homes,” Chief Executive Officer Richard Harpin said in a statement.

While government guidance permitted only emergency repairs during the lockdown, demand for the company’s home improvement services recovered strongly across all of its businesses after some restrictions were relaxed.

The company’s adjusted pretax profit for the six months ended Sept. 30 rose to 33.1 million pounds ($43.76 million) from 28.6 million pounds a year earlier.

$1 = 0.7564 pounds Reporting by Jasmine I S and Indranil Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M. and Devika Syamnath