(Alliance News) - Compass Group PLC on Wednesday said it expects to continue growing into the future after a strong start to its financial year.

The Chertsey, England-based catering services company said pretax profit rose 21% to USD1.20 billion in the six months that ended March 31 from GBP990 million a year before.

Revenue increased 11% to USD20.74 billion from USD18.66 billion.

Compass declared an interim dividend of 20.70 US cents, up 16% from 17.90 cents last year.

Chief Executive Dominic Blakemore said: "We have continued to refine our portfolio and increase focus on our core markets where we see significant growth opportunities. The group has built strong competitive advantages over the past few decades which are being replicated across all our regions."

In light of these results, Compass upgraded guidance for underlying operating profit growth from 13% to towards 15% for the full 2024 financial year, which ends September 30. Organic revenue growth is expected to be close to 10%.

"Beyond 2024, we expect to sustain mid to high single-digit organic revenue growth, ongoing margin progression and profit growth ahead of revenue growth. We will continue to reinvest in the business to support future growth, with any surplus capital returned to shareholders," said Blakemore.

Compass shares were down 4.1% to 2,226.94 pence each in London on Wednesday morning.

By Elijah Dale, Alliance News reporter

Comments and questions to newsroom@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2024 Alliance News Ltd. All Rights Reserved.