Newsroom

The Preliminary announcement of the final results for the year ended 31 December 2007

Overview

Provident Financial plc ("Provident Financial") is the market-leading provider of home credit in the UK and Ireland, with a successful, developing credit card business. It sold its insurance business and demerged its international business during 2007, both of which have been classified as discontinued operations. Its primary continuing operations consist of the Consumer Credit Division, comprising home credit and Real Personal Finance, and Vanquis Bank.

Key financial results

  2007 2008 Change
Consumer Credit Division and Vanquis Bank:      
Customer numbers 1,996k 1,818k 8.1%
Receivables £892.1m £793.1m 12.5%
Profit before tax from continuing operations £115.2m £104.1m 10.7%
Final dividend per share 38.10p    
Total dividend per share* 63.50p    

after adjusting for the one for two consolidation of Provident Financial shares and taking into account the 4.75p per share dividend stated at the time of the demerger to be paid by International Personal Finance plc in respect of 2007, the aggregate dividend per share for 2007 represents the same 36.50p per share paid by Provident Financial in 2006.

Highlights

Consumer Credit Division

  • Strengthening rate of growth through the second half of 2007 with year end home credit customer numbers up 5.3% to a record 1.65 million
  • Reduction in impairment charge, due to strong credit management
  • Real Personal Finance market test now in 33 locations and progressing well
  • Profit growth restored, with underlying profit before tax up 1.2%* to £123.5m

Vanquis Bank

  • Strong growth with customer numbers up 25.9% to 316,000 and average receivables up 51.7% to £117.3m
  • Further significant improvement in credit quality
  • Profitable from June, with a profit of £3.3m in the second half of 2007
  • Achieved target of trading at around break even for the year with a full year loss of only £0.9m compared to a loss of £18.3m in 2006

Group

  • Profit before tax from continuing operations of £115.2m, representing profit growth of 16.8%*
  • Strong funding and liquidity positions to support continued high quality growth and strategic development

* Stated after adjusting for the one-off £5.5m benefit from changes to pension scheme members' commutation rights in 2006 relating to continuing operations

Peter Crook, Chief Executive of Provident Financial, commented:

"I am very pleased with the group's full year performance. During the year we have invested in further enhancements to marketing, credit management and the talent base, which are now driving high quality

growth in both customer numbers and profit. The strength of the group's funding and liquidity positions underpin the group's medium-term organic growth plans, as it pursues its strategy of addressing the broader UK non-standard lending market of some 10 million consumers.

Current market conditions are favourable for us, as mainstream lenders continue to tighten their lending criteria. The group has made a strong start to 2008."

Enquiries:

Media  
David Stevenson, Provident Financial 01274 731111
Nigel Prideaux, Eilis Murphy, Brunswick 020 7404 5959
   
Investor Relations  
Stuart Caldwell, Provident Financial 01274 731111