Please see attached the addresses and presentation to be delivered by REA Group's Chairman and CEO at this morning's Annual General Meeting.
For further information, please contact:
REA Group Ltd Investors:
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The release of this announcement was authorised by Tamara Kayser, Company Secretary.
About REA Group Ltd: (www.rea-group.com): REA Group Ltd ACN 068 349 066 (ASX:REA) ("REA Group") is a multinational digital advertising business specialising in property. REA Group operates Australia's leading residential and commercial property websites - realestate.com.au and realcommercial.com.au - as well as the leading website dedicated to share property, Flatmates.com.au. REA Group owns Smartline Home Loans Pty Ltd and Mortgage Choice Pty Ltd, Australian mortgage broking franchise groups, and PropTrack Pty Ltd, a leading provider of property data services. In Australia, REA Group holds strategic investments in Simpology Pty Ltd, a leading provider of mortgage application and e-lodgement solutions for the broking and lending industries; Realtair Pty Ltd, a digital platform providing end-to-end technology solutions for the real estate transaction process, CampaignAgent Pty Ltd, Australia's leading provider of Buy Now Pay Later solutions for the Australian real estate market and Managed Platforms Pty Ltd, an emerging Property Management software platform. Internationally, REA Group holds a controlling interest in REA India (formerly Elara Technologies Pte. Ltd.), operator of established brands Housing.com, Makaan.com and PropTiger.com and owns leading portals in Hong Kong (squarefoot.com.hk) and China (myfun.com). REA Group also holds a significant minority shareholding in Move, Inc., operator of realtor.com in the US, and the PropertyGuru Group, operator of leading property sites in Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia.
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Hamish McLennan, Chairman, Introduction
Good morning. I'm Hamish McLennan, Chairman of REA Group Ltd, and on behalf of the Board I'm delighted to welcome you to our 2021 Annual General Meeting.
Our Company Secretary, Tamara Kayser informs me that a quorum is now present. I would now like to declare the meeting open, and the Notice of Meeting is taken as read.
REA Group's Board decided to conduct this year's AGM in a virtual format. This decision is in line with our ongoing priority to keep our people, customers and the broader community safe throughout the pandemic. This means all attendees are joining virtually from various locations.
I would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which REA's headquarters is located, the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin nation, and pay my respects to the Elders, past, present and emerging. Directors and shareholders are joining from other ancestral lands, and I also pay my respects to the traditional owners of those lands and their Elders past, present and emerging.
If there are technical issues that result in a number of shareholders being unable to reasonably participate in the meeting, the meeting will be adjourned, and we will reconvene. If the technical issues are isolated to my location, then I nominate Michael Miller to assume the Chair. In the unlikely event that we take steps to adjourn the meeting, we will make an announcement to the ASX with all necessary details.
How to vote
Voting on all items of business today will be carried out by way of poll. Shareholders had the option of casting their vote before the meeting or appointing a proxy to do so on their behalf. If you haven't done so, you can vote at today's meeting online as shown on the slide now being displayed and as explained in further detail in the virtual meeting online guide that accompanied the Notice of Meeting. You can do so at any time during the meeting as the polls are now open for voting. Voting will close shortly after the end of the meeting.
Except where noted, items of business are ordinary resolutions and can therefore be decided by a majority of votes cast by shareholders.
If you experience any technical difficulties during today's meeting, please call the help line number shown on the screen.
How to ask questions
If you would like to ask a question at today's meeting you can do so by submitting your question online or via the telephone facility as shown on the slide now being displayed. You do not need to wait until the formal items of business to submit your questions. There may be a slight delay in transmission so can I please encourage you to start submitting your questions now.
Due to time constraints, it is possible that we may run out of time to answer all questions. To ensure that all our shareholders have the opportunity to ask questions, we ask each of you to ask no more than two questions on each resolution.
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Where we have received multiple questions on the same topic, these may be combined. All questions will be addressed to me as Chairman. I will direct questions to other directors, management or to the auditors as appropriate.
Questions relating to customer, consumer or personal shareholder matters won't be put to the meeting, and you will be contacted separately after the meeting. Similarly, this is a meeting of shareholders of REA Group and questions will be put to the meeting only if they relate to REA Group.
REA Group Board of Directors
Joining me today are Jennifer Lambert, independent non-executive director and Chair of the Audit, Risk & Compliance Committee, Nick Dowling, independent non-executive director and Chair of the Human Resources Committee, Kathleen Conlon, independent non-executive director, Richard Freudenstein, non-executive director, Michael Miller, non-executive director, Tracey Fellows, non-executive director and Owen Wilson, our Chief Executive Officer.
Janelle Hopkins, our Chief Financial Officer, and Tamara Kayser, our Company Secretary are also joining us today.
And finally, representing the Company's auditors, Ernst & Young, is David McGregor. While David has now rotated off as partner, he was the lead audit partner for the FY21 audit and will be available to answer questions on the auditor's report and the conduct of the audit later in the meeting.
Moving to our agenda for today's meeting:
Firstly, I will provide a brief overview of REA's FY21 highlights;
Owen will then deliver an update on our FY21 operational performance and Q1 results for FY22;
In accordance with the Notice of Meeting, we will then move into the formalities of the meeting.
Through a year that saw ongoing disruption and volatility, REA accelerated its growth ambitions and delivered excellent financial results. Operational excellence, including record audience levels and the launch of new products and features, was complemented by the completion of a number of strategically significant transactions which provide the foundations to deliver long term sustainable growth.
Strong financial track record
Turning to REA Group's FY21 financial performance, highlights from our core operations1 included revenue2 of $928m, up 13%, EBITDA3 of $565m, up 19% and net profit of $318m, up 18%. These results included a strong focus on cost management which resulted in core operating cost growth (excluding acquisitions4) being contained to 3% YoY.
Excellent FY21 results delivered
The Group's overall financial position remains in excellent shape, as you can see on this next slide. Shareholders continue to benefit from strong earnings and dividends. REA's strong cash
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position and balance sheet underpinned the Board's decision to declare total dividends per share of 131 cents for the year, up 19% YoY, while earnings per share were 247 cents, up 21% YoY. Importantly, REA maintained its strong operating EBITDA margin of an impressive 60%.
Pivotal transactions accelerate REA's strategy
As you can see on this next slide, alongside REA's strong financial result, a number of significant transactions were completed.
In Australia, REA announced new strategic partnerships with Realtair, an industry leading proptech platform providing solutions to connect the real estate sale process from appraisal to settlement; and CampaignAgent, owner of the market leading buy-now-pay later solution for vendor paid advertising.
The successful acquisition of Mortgage Choice, and investment in software company Simpology, builds on the strength of our Smartline broker business and accelerates our financial services strategy.
REA acquired a controlling interest in India's Elara Technologies Pte. Ltd., (Elara) which was rebranded to REA India in September this year. REA India operates the property portals Housing.com and Makaan.com and property brokerage PropTiger.com. Despite India being heavily impacted by COVID, REA India delivered an impressive 23% YoY local currency revenue growth.
In Southeast Asia, REA completed the transaction to transfer the entities conducting its Malaysia and Thailand operations to Property Guru Pte. Ltd. (PropertyGuru), a leading digital proptech company. This was in exchange for REA receiving an initial 18% interest in PropertyGuru and our CEO, Owen Wilson has assumed a seat on the PropertyGuru board.
Owen will talk to these transactions in more detail shortly.
Share price growth
Reflecting REA's strong performance throughout FY21, our share price has traded at record highs. These results are testament to the dedication of REA's talented workforce.
On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Owen and the team, for their unwavering commitment, particularly given the ongoing turbulent market conditions endured throughout 2021.
I would also like to acknowledge and thank my fellow Board directors for their collective efforts to support our continued success. At the end of this meeting Kathleen Conlon will retire as a Director of the Company. I would like to take a moment to acknowledge Kathleen's contributions.
Kathleen joined the REA Group Board in 2007. She has also served in a number of roles, including Chair of the Human Resources Committee and member of the Audit, Risk & Compliance Committee. On behalf of the Board and management team, I would like to thank Kathleen for her tremendous support, help and advice during this period. Over the past 14 years, Kathleen's support and counsel have been particularly valued and we wish her well for the future.
You may have seen in our recent announcement that Kelly Bayer Rosmarin will be joining the REA Group Board. This will be effective from the first of January 2022, filling the vacancy created
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by Kathleen's departure. Kelly brings a wealth of experience to our board including an excellent track record of driving innovation at scale, while growing and operating large global businesses.
REA has strong foundations, a clear purpose and an exciting growth strategy, all of which point to a rewarding and prosperous future. We thank our valued stakeholders for your ongoing support and look forward to a successful 2022 fiscal year.
I will now invite Owen to talk to our operational performance and provide an update on our first quarter results for FY22.
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REA Group Limited published this content on 10 November 2021 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 10 November 2021 22:20:48 UTC.