Countrywide third quarter trading update.

Countrywide PLC the UK’s largest integrated property services group, issues its trading update for the quarter ended 30 September 2015.

Countrywide continues to perform well across its diversified portfolio, not withstanding the impact on their estate agency business of lower levels of housing transactions than in 2014.

Commenting on the Group’s performance, Alison Platt, CEO said:

“While we are undoubtedly experiencing a period of short-term pressure on market volumes, we continue to invest in our underlying business to ensure we have the foundation for future growth. The benefits of this strategy are evident in the current performance from both our Surveying and Financial Services businesses where previous investments in resource capacity have produced results which are currently well ahead of their respective markets.  We are also seeing good progress in our commercial property business, Lambert Smith Hampton.

“Further investment to strengthen the foundations of our lettings business continues in anticipation of significant growth in future years. We have had another good year so far in growing and strengthening our business through acquisitions and in progressing the implementation of our plan for the next five years, Building our Future, is gaining momentum.

“Against the current backdrop of less than expected residential volumes, Group EBITDA for the nine months to 30 September was 11% below last year. While we anticipate modest year-on-year recovery in Q4, overall we anticipate our EBITDA for the full year will be less than the £121.1 million achieved in 2014, which was the most profitable year in the Group’s history.

“The economic backdrop in the UK coupled with improving consumer confidence point to modest transaction growth in 2016. With a strong residential lettings sector now forming a permanent part of the housing market, and with more customers than ever choosing to arrange mortgages through intermediaries, the outlook for 2016 is a positive one for Countrywide. Our intent, as laid out in our Building our Future strategy, is to increase our resilience to the sales cycle volatility and broaden the Group’s business to deliver a strong future and sustainable long term value for our shareholders. Whilst there is much to do to drive that both organically and through acquisition, I’m confident that the start we have made will yield positive results in the near future.”

The trading update can be seen in full on their website: http://www.countrywide.co.uk/investor-relations/results-and-presentations/

Allen Walkey

Highly experienced businessman with a successful career in property sales and investment both in the UK and abroad. Now a freelance writer and blogger for the property and Investment Industry, keeping readers up-to-date with changes and events in a rapidly changing world.

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