- Profits before tax were £116.4m for FY 17/18
- 1% growth in profits compared to FY 16/17 – the ninth year of successive growth
- £3.5bn of new business secured in previous 12 months across five divisions
- Pre-tax profit in Hitachi Capital Business Finance rose 4.9% to £21.4m
Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC publishes its financial results for FY 17/18, announcing a significant rise in group profits and strong performance across its five key business units, significantly outpacing the average profit for FTSE 250 companies.
For the 2017/18 financial year, Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC reports profit before tax (PBT) of £116.4m, a rise of 7.1% over the previous financial year. Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC’s PBT is 8.4% higher than the average PBT among FTSE 250 companies of £106.9m, putting the business firmly among the UK’s biggest and best performing companies.
This marks the ninth successive year the company has increased profits and represents more than six times the amount of profit before tax generated in the 2009/10 financial year (PBT 09/10: £18.8m).
On a group basis, Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC generated £3.5bn of new business and ended the year with net earning assets of £4.8bn – a rise from £3.0bn and £4.1bn in financial year 2016/17, respectively.
Business & Invoice Finance performance
Pre-tax profit in Hitachi Capital Business Finance rose 4.9% to £21.4m, representing a strong return for the business unit. Hitachi Capital Business Finance provides business asset finance for sectors including transport, agriculture, construction, manufacturing, materials handling and financial services providers.
Hitachi Capital Business Finance’s asset portfolio grew to above £1bn whilst its overall share of the market grew from 1.68% as of the end of September 2015 to 2.0% as of September 2017. During the year, Hitachi Capital Business Finance became the first funder to offer the British Business Bank’s Enterprise Finance Guarantee for Asset Finance, allowing the business unit to expand its offering to a wider market and further support the growth of more British businesses.
Hitachi Business Finance has also launched a new direct-to-market asset finance and business loan proposition this year, which features no hidden fees and a simple online application process that offers customers an instant response. The proposition includes straightforward repayment options and a fast release of funds to a customer’s supplier within 24 hours of receiving all necessary paperwork.
In addition, Business Finance introduced a new hire purchase proposition for SMEs, covering all unregulated deals below £50,000.
Against the background of a static invoice finance market, Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance, which provides cash flow solutions to UK SMEs, generated record new business levels. The number of clients rose 18% on the previous year to over 700 clients across a wide range of sectors. Our Inspired Payroll product, which launched the previous year, also recorded a 100% increase in sales.
Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance received strong investment in technology, processes and people in order to transform and prepare it for future growth.
Commitment to service and developing talent
Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC’s financial performance is attributable in part to its goal of providing outstanding customer experience. Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC has earned consistently high scores for customer service across key metrics.
Hitachi Capital Business Finance was named Best Business Motor Finance Provider at the Business Moneyfacts Awards 2017 and Leasing & Asset Provider of the Year 2017 at the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers
Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance holds a rating of 4.9 stars for service and 5 stars for product on independent customer feedback platform Feefo. A survey of existing clients, carried out in December 2017, found that 92% were happy with the service, while 96% would recommend Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance to other businesses.
Robert Gordon, CEO of Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC, commented:
“These are a strong set of results and are testament to the hard work and dedication of our teams throughout the UK and Europe.
“Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC is now ranked among the fastest growing financial services firms in terms of sales growth, while our profitability makes us one of the top performers not only in the industry but also when compared to some of the UK’s biggest and most well-known companies.
“It’s particularly pleasing to demonstrate consistent, long-term growth within a challenging and competitive sector, and against a backdrop of general economic uncertainty.
“The processes, systems and strategies we’ve put in place provide a solid foundation for continued growth in the years to come.”
Gavin Wraith-Carter, Managing Director of Hitachi Capital Business Finance, commented:
“We know that lending to businesses continues to be a challenge, however, manufacturing is in our DNA and our results demonstrate real trust from our business customers. Over the past year we have looked to offer a more diverse range of products to appeal to a wider customer base, developing our direct-to-market asset finance, business loan and SME hire purchase services, to complement our existing relationships with brokers.”
Andy Dodd, Managing Director of Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance, commented:
“With rising numbers of SME start-ups and the increasing number of people turning to self-employment, we see a strong market opportunity for a service-oriented provider such as Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance. With our focus on excellent client service, we aim to provide faster, smarter funding decisions to help UK micro SMEs and SMEs grow and realise their potential.”