IFG's Irish departure sees profits tumble

The Dublin-headquartered financial services firm increased spending in 2016...

IFG's Irish departure sees profits tumble

Picture by: Andre Penner/AP/Press Association Images

IFG Group, the Dublin-based financial services firm that does big business in the UK, has reported a 26% fall in pretax profits to £6.4 million for  2016.

This contrasts with the 86% jump £8.6m it enjoyed to a year earlier.

Adjusted operating profit from its continuing businesses shrunk 14% to £10m, due chiefly to rising interest rates and increased investment.

Following the sale of its Irish pension and advisory business for €13.5m to Willis Ireland, IFG completed a major restructuring in 2015, with the group now concentrating on the UK wealth platform and high-net work advice markets. The group says the completion of this process allows for "increased focus on inorganic growth opportunities".

In terms of other changes, Paul McNamara suddenly left his position as group chief executive of the group last September, after just over two years in the role. He was succeeded by chief financial officer John Cotter.

On foot of the results, IFG shares fell by over 8% in early London trading on Thursday.

Adjusted earnings per share (EPS) fell 7% to 7.57 pence.

A final dividend of 3.35 pence per share has been proposed, an increase of 11%.

Revenues rise

Despite the profit dip, revenue rose 10% to £78.5m in its James Hay Partnership and Saunderson House units, while total assets under administration climbed 14% to £26.7 billion (€30.9bn) for the year.

James Hay had net inflows of £2.6bn, with assets under administration up 13% to £22.1bn. Saunderson House's assets under advice grew by 15% to £4.6bn, with the unit adding 215 new clients.

 

Mr Cotter said of the results:

"We enter 2017 with both businesses in stronger positions than last year, benefiting from the accelerated investment in people and technology, which will differentiate both businesses going forward."

Of the shift in focus, he added:

"In our markets, serving high-net worth clients, the quality of our relationships, digital capability and product set, is critical to retaining and attracting new clients.

Our success is evidenced by the growth in assets under administration and advice and increased revenues, creating future value and positioning the group for sustainable growth, both organically and inorganically, as we go forward."