Sage share price: Group updates investors on full-year performance

Company achieved organic revenue growth of 6.1%

Sage share price: Group updates investors on full-year performance

The Sage Group (LON:SGE) has updated investors on its full-year performance this morning.

Highlights from the company statement:

- Achieved organic revenue growth of 6.1% (FY15: 6.0%) and the fastest rate of recurring revenue growth for a decade of 10.4% (FY15: 9.0%);

- Software subscription growth of 32.3% (FY15: 28.9%), in line with the planned transition and planned decline in SSRS revenue of 8.5% (FY15: decline of 0.7%);

- Customers embracing closer subscription relationships with 46% increase in software subscription contracts to just over one million (FY15: 690,000) and an increase in retention rates to 86% (FY15: 84%);

- Accelerating revenue growth in Europe, Africa and Brazil; slower performance in Asia (one off regulatory change in the prior year); growth in North America consistent with last year;

- Underlying cash conversion at 100%, supporting free cash flow of £254m and the 8% increase in full year dividend to 14.15p.

Stephen Kelly, Chief Executive Officer said:

"FY16 saw Sage continue to deliver on the commitment made at our June 2015 Capital Markets Day to perform and transform. The organic revenue growth of 6% is driven by higher quality recurring revenue, which grew at the fastest rate in a decade. The strategy is working - with customers embracing closer relationships with Sage, evidenced by a 46% increase in the number of subscription contracts and a contract retention rate of 86%.

Phase one of the transformation programme has been successfully delivered. For phase two we have ensured that we have the core management team, processes and culture to deliver the best technology ecosystem for our customers - those business builders that drive the world's economy, creating jobs, growth and prosperity. Phase two of the transformation will continue to be non-linear and focus on driving more technology innovation with increasing focus on new customer acquisition as well as continuing to improve execution against the strategy for Business Builders. We are already starting to see Sage drive faster innovation, a more customer-obsessed DNA and colleagues making a difference in all of our communities through the Sage Foundation.

For FY17, the second full fiscal year of our transformation, our full year guidance for FY17 is for at least 6% organic revenue growth and at least 27% organic operating margin. We will continue to front-load investment in growth in H117, consistent with our execution last year. Consequently, we anticipate stronger H2 growth and accelerating momentum as we exit FY17."

As of 07:05 GMT, Wednesday, 30 November, The Sage Group plc share price is 677.99p.

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