14 May 2008
At today's Annual General Meeting, the Chairman of International Personal Finance plc ("IPF"), Christopher Rodrigues, will make the following trading statement. This constitutes the first Interim Management Statement of IPF, in accordance with the UK Listing Authority's Disclosure and Transparency Rules. The purpose of this Interim Management Statement, the full text of which is set out below, is to provide an update on the performance of IPF from the start of 2008 up to the date of publication, along with an update of its financial position. No material events and transactions have taken place during the period.
The statement is as follows:
"IPF has made a good start to 2008.
Our Central Europe businesses are performing well driven by good year on year growth in customer numbers and credit issued coupled with continued good credit quality. Good underlying profit growth has been further enhanced by favourable exchange rates which overall were approximately 25% better than for the same period of last year. We intend to hedge our profit for the remainder of the year in the near future.
In Mexico, the significant improvement in credit quality seen in the fourth quarter of 2007 has continued, albeit with some further reduction in customer numbers. The combined effect is a substantially reduced level of impairment and an improved trading performance. With credit quality much improved our focus is now on controlled growth in customer numbers and credit issued per customer as we move towards our target of profit for Mexico in 2009.
In Romania, we have continued to expand our infrastructure with the opening of 7 branches, which now brings our total network to 14. Customer numbers are growing well and credit quality remains good. In Russia, we have established our operations in Moscow and remain on track to begin trading around the half year.
There have been few signs of the pressures on the global economy affecting our performance in any of our markets, but we continue to monitor this closely and maintain our cautious stance on credit.
The balance sheet remains strong and well funded. There have been no significant changes in the financial position of the Group since the publication of the Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year ended 31 December 2007.
This encouraging start to the year gives the Board confidence that 2008 will prove to be another year of good progress across the business."
The interim results for IPF will be published on Wednesday, 23 July 2008 and will be accompanied by an analyst briefing which will be given by Christopher Rodrigues (Chairman), John Harnett (Chief Operating Officer) and David Broadbent (Finance Director).
For further information contact:
Finsbury +44 (0)207 251 3801
International Personal Finance plc
Helen Spivey (Investor Relations) +44 (0)113 285 6876 John Mitra (Media) +44 (0)113 285 6784
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