ZPG Plc (LON:ZPG), which runs property portal Zoopla and price comparison website USwitch, has reported a 41% jump in first-half earnings, weeks after agreeing to a £2.2bn takeover by US private equity firm Silver Lake Corp.
In the six months to the end of March, the FTSE 250-listed firm saw its adjusted underlying earnings (EBITDA) rise to £63.4mln, up from £45.0mln a year earlier, with profit for the period increasing by 33% to £22.4mln.
The group said its revenues also rose by a third to £156.9mln, up from £117.9mln a year earlier, with property business revenue up 34% to £74.9mln, and comparison site revenue ahead 32% to £82mln.
ZPG said listings on Zoopla increased by 6% to 982,000 whilst the number of estate agents on its sites rose by 7% to 15,264 branches, as the site continues to win back partners from recently-listed rival OnTheMarket PLC (LON:OTMP).
The firm added that it enjoyed a good start to the second half of its financial year across both divisions. In Property, we are encouraged by the strong cross-sell pipeline for our products as well as the rate of returning UK agents to our portals.
Cross-sells and new contract wins
Alex Chesterman, founder & CEO of ZPG said: "Our Property division performed well across each vertical, helped by demand for additional products, cross-sell and new contract wins, including the continued return of agents to our portals."
He added: "Our Comparison division also performed well with leads up across each vertical. Energy had an exceptionally strong first half as a result of ongoing optimisation of the consumer journey and extreme weather during the Period prompting increased switching levels.”
The has resolved not to declare an interim dividend following the Silver Lake offer.
ZPG said Silver Lake's £4.90 per share cash offer reflected the value of the firm with a shareholder meeting due to be held on June 18 to approve the takeover deal.