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CFO's review

Introduction

On a total operations basis (including Canada Municipal now reported as discontinued), we saw revenue growth of 1% and underlying EBIT growth of 11% despite the loss of expected EBIT at ATM of around €13m. Group underlying EBIT margins grew by 40 basis points, and by 90 basis points in the Commercial Division. We also saw an increase in the Group return on operating assets on a total operations basis from 15.9% to 20.7%. Non-trading and exceptional items of €146.0m after tax resulted in a statutory loss for the year of €97.7m.

Financial review

The Group reports in Euros from 1 April 2018 to reflect the fact that the majority of our revenues and costs are Euro denominated. The impact of currency is much reduced and as such no comparisons at constant currency are required.

On 8 November 2018 the Group announced its intention to sell Canada Municipal and Reym. Active disposal programmes are underway and have reached a stage whereby we consider that the assets and liabilities of both businesses should be presented as assets held for sale. The Canada disposal meets the definition of a discontinued operation as stated in IFRS 5 Non-current assets held for sale and discontinued operations, therefore the net results are presented as discontinued operations in the Income Statement, and the Income Statement and Cash Flow Statement prior year comparatives have been restated.

Read the full review on page 25/33 of the Annual Report.

Toby Woolrych
Chief Financial Officer