• First quarter revenue of $15.0 million.
• Operating profit of $0.9 million.
• Board declares twenty-fourth consecutive quarterly dividend.
Toronto, Ontario– January 11, 2018 – Retained executive search firm The Caldwell Partners International Inc. (TSX: CWL) today issued its financial results for the fiscal 2018 first quarter ended November 30, 2017. All references to quarters or years are for the fiscal periods unless otherwise noted and all currency amounts are in Canadian dollars.
Financial Highlights (in $000s except per share amounts)
|Three Months Ended November 30
|License fee revenue||$76||$75|
|Cost of sales||$11,073||$10,221|
|Investment income from marketable securities||$2||–|
|Earnings before tax||$906||$1,099|
|Net earnings after tax||$410||$762|
|Net earnings per share||$0.020||$0.038|
“The Caldwell Partners team delivered a strong performance in the first quarter,” said John Wallace, chief executive officer. “The overall economic outlook remains healthy, as we continue to experience solid search demand, notwithstanding our unbalanced performance from geography to geography. We saw robust revenue growth in the US this quarter, which augmented our somewhat muted results in Canada and continued financial investments in the establishment and growth of the UK. While we do anticipate unevenness from quarter to quarter and from our geographic regions, our partners are collectively performing strongly, with search volumes and pricing holding steady.”
Wallace continued: “As we continue to grow our presence, and to further respond to our client’s needs and requirements, it has become imperative to address the need to add supplemental breadth and depth to our existing teams, in order to continue to enhance our overall capabilities. As such, we will be placing incremental attention in the coming months and quarters on the recruitment of Partners and teams, with a particular emphasis in the United States.”
The Board of Directors today also declared the payment of a quarterly dividend of 2.0 cents per Common Share payable to holders of Common Shares of record on January 23, 2018 and to be paid on March 19, 2018.
Financial Highlights (all numbers expressed in $000s)
- Professional fees for the first quarter of 2018 increased 9.9% (an increase of 14.4% excluding an unfavourable 4.5% variance from exchange rate fluctuations) over the comparable period last year to $14,973 (2017: $13,629).
- The increase in professional fees is attributable to a slightly higher Average Number of Partners at 38.0 compared to 37.8 in the prior year period and an increase in Average Fee per Assignment to $131 (2017: $117) partially offset by a lower Number of Assignments per Partner from 3.1 to 3.0 resulting in a decrease in number of assignments to 114 (2017: 116).
- First quarter professional fees in the US were up 20.8% (up 27.3% excluding an unfavourable 6.5% variance from exchange rate fluctuations) to $11,545 (2017: $9,557). The gain was the result of increases in the Number of Assignments per Partner, the Average Number of Partners and the Average Fee per Assignment.
- First quarter professional fees in Canada were down 5.7% to $3,384 (2017: $3,589). A higher Average Fee per Assignment was more than offset by a lower Number of Partners and a lower Number of Assignments per Partner.
- First quarter professional fees in Europe were down 90.9% (down 91.0% excluding a 0.1% favourable variance from exchange rate fluctuations) to $44 (2017: $483). The addition of one new partner in the second half of 2017 and another late in the current period resulted in a higher Number of Partners, offset by a significantly lower Number of Assignments per Partner and Average Fee per Assignment.
- License fees from our licensees in Latin America and New Zealand for the use of the Caldwell Partners brand and intellectual property for the 2017 first quarter were $76 (2017: $75).
- For the first quarter of 2018, higher revenue ($1,345) more than offset by the combination of higher cost of sales ($852) and higher expenses ($688) resulted in a decrease in operating profit of $195 to $904 (2017: $1,099) over the comparable period in the prior year. Excluding exchange rate variances, operating profit decreased $124 to $975.
- First quarter cost of sales increased 8.3% (12.9% excluding a favourable 4.6% variance from exchange rate fluctuations), or $852 to $11,073 (2017: $10,221).
- Expenses in the first quarter increased 28.9% or $688 over the same period in the prior year to $3,072 (2017: $2,384). Excluding exchange rate variances, expenses increased $787 or 33.0% over the same period last year. This constant currency increase was the result of increases in share-based compensation expense caused from an increase in the share price in the current year versus a decline in the share price in the same period last year ($328), firm-wide search team practice meetings for business development and training being held during the period in the current period but not in the prior year ($165), a reduction in the final Hawksmoor acquisition (UK – 2014) earn-out amount payable recognized in the prior year with no such reduction in the current year as the amount was fully settled ($115), increased marketing expenses related to our brand update initiative ($100), increased partner recruitment expenses ($68), increased business development costs ($65) and general increases across other categories ($38). These unfavourable variances were partially offset by decreases in legal fees ($70) and increases in foreign exchange gains on intercompany loans and US dollar bank account balances ($22).
- On a segment basis, $1,101 of profit was from the US ($1,366 net of intercompany license fees), $299 of profit was from Canada ($34 net of intercompany license fee revenue) and Europe’s operating loss was $496. The year over year decrease in operating profit of $195 came from decreases in Canada of $139 and Europe of $430, partially offset by an increase in the US of $374.
- Net earnings after tax:
- First quarter net income was $410 ($0.020 per share), as compared to $762 ($0.038 per share) in the comparable period a year earlier.
Average Number of Partners, Professional Fees per Partner, Number of Assignments, Number of Assignments per Partner and Average Fee per Assignment do not have any standardized meaning under IFRS and may not be comparable to measures presented by other companies. These operating measures are used by the Company to analyze its results. Please refer to section “Non‐GAAP Financial Measures and Other Operating Measures” in the Company’s MD&A for a definition of these terms.
For a complete discussion of the quarterly financial results, please see the company’s Management Discussion and Analysis posted on SEDAR at www.sedar.com
About Caldwell Partners
Caldwell Partners is a leading international provider of executive search and has been for more than 45 years. As one of the world’s most trusted advisors in executive search, the firm has a sterling reputation built on successful searches for boards, chief and senior executives, and selected functional experts. With offices and partners across North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific, the firm takes pride in delivering an unmatched level of service and expertise to its clients.
The Caldwell Partners’ Common shares are listed on The Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: CWL). Please visit our website at www.caldwellpartners.com for further information.
Forward-looking statements in this document are based on current expectations that are subject to the significant risks and uncertainties cited. These forward-looking statements generally can be identified by use of statements that include phrases such as “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “foresee,” “may,” “will,” “likely,” “estimates,” “potential,” “continue” or other similar words or phrases. Similarly, statements that describe our objectives, plans or goals also are forward-looking statements. The Company is subject to many factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the relevant forward looking statement including, but not limited to, our ability to attract and retain key personnel; exposure to our Partners taking our clients with them to another firm; the performance of the Canadian, US and international economies; competition from other companies directly or indirectly engaged in executive search; liability risk in the services we perform; potential legal liability from clients, employees and candidates for employment; cybersecurity requirements, vulnerabilities, threats and attacks; damage to our brand reputation; our ability to align our cost structure to changes in our revenue; adverse tax law rulings; our ability to generate sufficient cash flow from operations to support our growth and maintain our dividend; foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations; marketable securities valuation fluctuations; volatility of the market price and volume of our common shares; and any potential impairment of our acquired goodwill and intangible assets. For more information on the factors that could affect the outcome of forward-looking statements, refer to the “Risk Factors” section of our Annual Information Form and other public filings (copies of which may be obtained at www.sedar.com). These factors should be considered carefully and the reader should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements. Although any forward-looking statements are based on what management currently believes to be reasonable assumptions, we cannot assure readers that actual results, performance or achievements will be consistent with these forward-looking statements, and management’s assumptions may prove to be incorrect. Except as required by Canadian securities laws, we do not undertake to update any forward-looking statements, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time by us or on our behalf; such statements speak only as of the date made. The forward-looking statements included herein are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary language.
For further information, please contact:
Investors & Analysts:
Chris Beck, CPA, Chief Financial Officer
The Caldwell Partners International
Caroline Lomot, Director of Marketing
The Caldwell Partners International