Savills plc, the international real estate advisor, is today holding its Annual General Meeting (AGM) at 12 noon, 33 Margaret Street, London, W1G 0JD, and provides the following AGM statement.
During the year to date the Group has traded in line with our expectations. Globally, our transaction businesses have continued to maintain strong market shares although, as anticipated, volumes in certain markets have been subdued as a result of political and economic uncertainty. Our Consultancy, Property Management and Investment Management businesses have continued to perform well.
In the UK, trading has been resilient despite increased political uncertainty. In our Residential Transaction business there has been a healthy increase in indicators which are normally a precursor to increased market activity. Of particular note is strong double digit increases in new buyers registered and a year-on-year increase in revenue in the prime Central London market. The Commercial Transaction business is also proving resilient, particularly in Central London, however, volumes across the UK have declined and development activity is relatively subdued.
In Asia Pacific, Savills has had a good start to the year, with Hong Kong, Mainland China, Singapore and Vietnam showing year-on-year revenue growth.
In North America, the business has successfully rebranded to Savills and continued its strong revenue performance from Q4 2018 through the period, with corporates generally active in relatively benign market conditions. The New York, Washington and Californian markets have proved particularly active to date.
In Continental Europe and the Middle East, we have traded in line with our expectations, with good year-on-year revenue growth in Ireland, France, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic. In Sweden, the new Capital markets and leadership team have started well accumulating a strong pipeline of potential transaction activity for the second half of the year.
Savills Investment Management has performed as expected. As previously announced, we successfully concluded the search for a new CEO for Savills Investment Management , with Alex Jeffrey due to join the firm later in the year.
Whilst the year has started as expected, the first few months typically represent a relatively modest proportion of the expected outturn for the full year. In the UK market, there remains significant investor demand but commercial transaction activity in the next few months may continue to be overshadowed by the prolonged uncertainty over Brexit, the exact impact of which is difficult to determine at present. We do, however, expect some strengthening of activity in certain overseas markets and, despite a greater weighting towards H2 than last year, we continue to anticipate overall performance for 2019 to be in line with our expectations.