Bellevue Group back in the profit zone

7/27/2012, 7:01 AM (Source: GlobeNewswire)

Bellevue Group AG / Bellevue Group back in the profit zone . Processed and transmitted by Thomson Reuters ONE. The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

Report on the first half of 2012

  • Bellevue Group closes first half of 2012 with a net profit of CHF 8.3 million
  • Personnel and other operating expenses reduced by 16% thanks to restructuring measures
  • Both Bank am Bellevue and Bellevue Asset Management operating at a profit
  • Financial strength the basis for the company's reorientation

Uncertainty about the world economy remained a dominant theme in the first half of 2012. Individuals and institutionals were extremely reluctant to invest in the stock market and trading turnover dropped to record lows. In this adverse environment, Bellevue Group displayed a good performance at its brokerage, corporate finance and asset management operations and achieved a consolidated net profit of CHF 8.3 million (previous year: CHF -53.5 million). Bellevue Group's satisfying operating results were not distorted by any extraordinary impairments or write-offs.

Bellevue Group reported a slight reduction in income from fees and commissions, the Group's most important source of income, to CHF 20.7 million for the first six months of 2012 compared to the prior-year period (CHF 21.9 million). Thanks to the timely implementation of restructuring measures, personnel and other operating expenses were reduced by 16% to CHF 18.7 million (previous year: CHF 22.2 million). At the bottom line the Group earned a net profit of CHF 8.3 million (previous year: CHF -53.5 million). Despite the dividend and cash payout of CHF 34.6 million during the period under review, Bellevue Group maintained a solid capital base of CHF 161 million at mid-year (end 2011: CHF 191 million) and employed a workforce of 81 (full-time equivalents; end 2011: 85).

"The restructuring measures at Bellevue Group have been effective. We have achieved satisfying operating results in a challenging environment but we expect the second half to be much weaker as investors continue to stand on the sidelines, keeping trading turnover at low levels, and due to the absence of certain factors that had an impact in the first half. We will further optimize and build out our business model. In the current environment, however, more time is needed before the full impact of these efforts feeds through to the income statement," CEO Urs Baumann says in summarizing the company's situation at the mid-year mark.

Bank am Bellevue - profitable even in an adverse environment 

Historically low trading turning due to the lack of demand from institutional investors had a notable impact on brokerage activity. In corporate finance, Bank am Bellevue acted as lead manager for the rights issue conducted by Leclanché S.A. There were few capital market transactions in Switzerland because of the widespread uncertainty in financial markets. Against this backdrop the bank's operating income declined 23% to CHF 11.5 million (previous year: CHF 14.9 million). Thanks primarily to a reduction in personnel expense, total operating expenses amounted to CHF 8.3 million (previous year: CHF 9.8 million, -15%).  The decrease in income was partially offset, allowing Bank am Bellevue to report a net profit of CHF 2.0 million for the first half (previous year: CHF -25.4 million). Bank am Bellevue thus managed to operate at a profit even in the current market environment with record-low trading volumes.    

Bellevue Asset Management - measures to improve profitability pay off 

Bellevue Asset Management's focus on healthcare investing, regional niche strategies and innovative investment strategies for owner-managed companies has given it a distinct profile in the marketplace. These optimizations and the various measures taken to improve profitability are reflected in its interim results for 2012.  Bellevue Asset Management increased its net fee and commission income for the first half to CHF 11.1 million (previous year: CHF 8.0 million). Personnel and other operating expenses were 15% lower y-o-y at CHF 8.7 million (previous year: CHF 10.3 million). After other income, which includes the result from seed capital, and the release of provisions, depreciation, amortization and taxes, profit for the period amounted to CHF 8.0 million (previous year: CHF -23.5 million). The BB Entrepreneur Europe and BB African Opportunities funds achieved top ratings in international performance rankings during the period under review. Marketing activities were initiated in the United Kingdom at the beginning of June as part of this unit's strategy to address new customer segments and expand its regional footprint.

Slight decline in assets under management despite good investment performance

Assets under management declined slightly by 3% to CHF 3.5 billion (end 2011: CHF 3.6 billion) due to the general restraint among investors in the stock market. The good to very good investment performance by several investment products offset nearly all of the asset outflows.

Agenda 2013:

Consolidated financial statements for 2012       25 February 2013

Annual general meeting 2013                            18 March 2013

The full version of the half year report is available at www.bellevue.ch.

Contact:

Media / Investor Relations: Daniel Koller, CFO

Telephone +41 44 267 67 00, Fax +41 44 267 67 01, ir@bellevue.ch

Bellevue Group

The Bellevue Group is an independent Swiss financial group domiciled in Küsnacht. The parent company Bellevue Group AG is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange.

Bank am Bellevue is a provider of research and brokerage services in Swiss equities and selected international stocks as well as corporate finance services.

Bellevue Asset Management manages specialized equity investment vehicles focused on selected sector and regional strategies and provides selected institutional asset management services.




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Source: Bellevue Group AG via Thomson Reuters ONE

HUG#1629807

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Bellevue Group AG
Seestrasse 16; Postfach Küsnacht/Zürich Switzerland

WKN: A0LG3Z;ISIN: CH0028422100;


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