March 5 (Bloomberg) -- Regus Plc, the world’s largest operator of serviced offices, rose to the highest in more than five years in London trading after full-year earnings beat estimates.
Regus gained as much as 8.5 percent to 140.50 pence, the highest since September 2007. Pretax profit increased to 85.1 million pounds ($129 million) last year from 49.4 million pounds a year earlier, the Luxembourg-based company said in a statement today. Analysts expected earnings of 83.6 million pounds, the average of 7 estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
“This is a strong set of results from Regus, which reflects the benefits of good growth in its core markets and the costs benefits of its growing scale,” Investec Securities said in a research note. “We like that this business is on the front foot for growth, a rarity in the sector at present.”
Regus plans to increase the number of its offices to 2,000 by 2014 and the company acquired a majority stake in MWB Business Exchange Plc last month to help achieve that goal. The company expects to add at least 350 centers in 2013.
The company today said it plans to increase the full-year dividend by 10 percent to 3.2 pence.
Today’s share price increase was the biggest since Sept. 7, 2011. The stock was up 7.5 percent at 139.2 pence as of 9:49 a.m. in London trading, boosting this year’s gain to 30 percent and giving the company a market value of 1.31 billion pounds.
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