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Equiniti floored by delays to Wells Fargo integration

WFSS is now expected to be separated from its former parent in June at a total cost of £45mln
share prices
Takeda's acqusition of Shire was a complex cross-border deal

Liberum chopped its share price target for registrar Equiniti Group PLC (LON:EQN) after a warning the integration of Wells Fargo’s share registration business (WFSS) is taking longer than expected.

The house broker’s target is now 290p, from 320p, after the full year statement highlighted additional costs and uncertainties surrounding the integration.

Separating soon

WFSS is now expected to be separated from its former parent in June at a total cost of £45mln.

Equiniti, which handled the registrar and change of ownership following Takeda’s £46bn acquisition of Shire Pharmaceutical, posted revenues 31% higher at £531mln in 2018.

Underlying profits rose by 8% to £39.9mln with a 22% hike in the dividend.

Liberum added that the longer-term fundamentals remained in place.

Organic revenue growth over the year was impressive at 7% while net debt was 5% lower than expected.

Even so, the next 6-12 months will be crucial for the share price added the broker with no room for any further delays at WFSS.

Shares fell 10% to 182.8p.

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