Back in January, judges in Los Angeles ruled that thousands of security guards had been underpaid for a nine-year period between 2001 and 2010.
The decision means that G4S will have to shell out between £75-100mln to settle the claim, although it has decided to take a provision of £100mln as its “best estimate” of the total costs.
Revenue fell 4% to £7.51bn in the 12 months ended 31 December (2017: £7.83bn), while earnings plunged 65% to £82mln (2017: £237mln).
The drop-off in profitability reflected the California settlement and a £35mln charge for pension equalisation regulation in the UK.
“Our Secure Solutions business delivered underlying revenue growth of 3% and profit margins rose from 6.2% to 6.5% reflecting the benefits of commercial discipline, growth in the sale of technology-enabled security and productivity gains,” said chief executive Ashley Almanza.
“As expected, this was offset by the effect of challenging trading conditions in a number of Cash Solutions markets and a strong comparative performance in Retail Cash Solutions in 2017. Overall, the group delivered underlying earnings in line with the previous year”.
He added: “Our sales wins in the second half of 2018 have underpinned a good start to the year and this, together with growing technology-enabled services in both our cash and security businesses, supports a positive outlook for 2019.”
G4S shares fell 3.3% to 201.5p at the opening bell on Tuesday.