Chairman's statement

I am delighted that the Group had another very good year delivering customer and profit growth, with continued investment to deliver our strategy. We have a clear vision “to be the world’s most trusted provider of home repairs and improvements” and we have agreed the strategic priorities (read here) to ensure we achieve it.

There are four areas of progress in the year that I would like to specifically address in this statement.

Firstly, the rate of progress in North America has been very positive. Through the strength of the existing business, enhanced with the acquisition of Utility Service Partners we have achieved the 3m customer milestone and 50m affinity partner households – great progress toward our 80m household target.

Secondly, the strength of affinity partnerships is the bedrock of our business and I am delighted with the launch of Aviva Response in the UK and the new joint venture with Edison Energia in Italy. Digital marketing is already live with both partners, a demonstration of our mutual commitment.

At the Capital Markets Day in June last year, we said we wanted to offer a compelling on demand service to homeowners. We have accelerated our plans with the investment in Checkatrade in the UK and the acquisition of Habitissimo in Spain.

Finally, opening new countries, via a joint venture, remains a key priority and we have made good progress in FY17, with discussions in progress with multiple prospects.

Dividend

Given the Group’s performance this year and the Board’s confidence in its future prospects, the Board is proposing an increase in the final dividend to 11.2p a share, bringing the total ordinary dividend for the year to 15.3p (FY16: 12.7p), an increase of 24%, which is 1.76x covered by the FY17 adjusted earnings per share compared to 1.72x in FY16.

Board changes

During the year David Bower was appointed as Chief Financial Officer and Johnathan Ford as Chief Operating Officer. We have also strengthened the Board with the appointment of three new Directors with effect from 23 May 2017. Tom Rusin has been appointed as an Executive Director and Katrina Cliffe and Edward Fitzmaurice have both been appointed as Non-Executive Directors. Katrina will also join the Audit & Risk Committee. Tom has been Chief Executive Officer of HomeServe USA since July 2011 and is currently a member of the HomeServe plc Executive Committee.

People

HomeServe’s success is driven by the commitment of its people. On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank all our people for their contribution to another set of very good results.

JM Barry Gibson
Chairman
23 May 2017