Annual Report 2014

Investor Relations

Investor Relations activities
The Investor Relations team focuses on providing transparent and consistent information and interactive communication. We strive for an open dialogue with the financial community, the media, and all key stakeholders to enhance understanding of the business as well as to explain the risks and opportunities.

The Adecco Group is committed to providing regular updates on key value drivers, business strategy, threats, and opportunities as well as key ratios used by the Group to track its own performance. We are dedicated to providing true, fair, and up-to-date information to every interested stakeholder, so that the share price reflects the inherent value of the Company.

We formally communicate our financial performance in our comprehensive quarterly results, which Management discusses with the financial community via a conference call and webcast. We also offer meetings with Management and Investor Relations at roadshows, conferences, and at our headquarters. In addition, we strive to ensure clear and transparent communication of other price-sensitive information through press releases and comprehensive content on our website at investor.adecco.com. We respect the legal obligations relating to confidentiality and disclosure, and make every effort to guarantee equal distribution of price-sensitive information.

In keeping with our approach, we maintained an open dialogue with the financial community through our Investor Relations activities in 2014. During the year, we devoted 49 days to market communication through broker conferences and roadshows in Europe and North America, during which we held over 300 one-on-one or group meetings with investors.

In 2014 we held our biennial Investor Days. The two-day event in Rome featured updates on the Group’s strategy and financial performance, detailed presentations on our operations in Italy, France, Iberia, Eastern Europe & MENA, as well as US Healthcare Staffing, and a technology expo.

Analyst coverage
Adecco’s development is closely monitored by the financial community. Currently 23 brokers actively cover Adecco, maintaining regular contact with Management and the Investor Relations team. They comprise ABN Amro, Bank am Bellevue, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Bank Vontobel, Barclays Capital, Bryan Garnier & Co., Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Exane BNP Paribas, Goldman Sachs, Helvea-Baader Bank Group, HSBC, Jefferies, JP Morgan Cazenove, Kepler Cheuvreux, MainFirst, Morgan Stanley, Rabobank, Redburn, Royal Bank of Canada, UBS, and Zürcher Kantonalbank.

After reporting the Q4 and FY results for 2013, at the end of March 2014, 57% of the analysts recommended buying the stock, 30% had a neutral view, and 13% recommended selling. The year 2014 ended with 52% of the analysts having a buy recommendation, 39% being neutral, and 9% having a sell recommendation on Adecco shares. This development was influenced by continued strong profitability, improving revenue trends, and the share price performance.

Share performance report
Following a 47% increase in 2013, the Adecco share price started 2014 at CHF 70.60. For the first six months, the share price fluctuated between a low of CHF 69.45 and a high of CHF 78.60, closing at CHF 73.00 on June 30, 2014. From July, European equity markets in general, and cyclical stocks in particular, came under some pressure due to renewed concerns about the economic outlook in the region. In October, Adecco shares fell to their low for the year of CHF 58.85, before recovering to end the year at CHF 68.85.

Over the year 2014, the Adecco share price decreased by 2%. This represents an underperformance of 12% compared to the Swiss Market Index (SMI) (in CHF), but an outperformance of 12% against a basket of our key competitors [1] in the staffing industry. Adecco’s market capitalisation, based on issued shares, was CHF 12.3 billion at the end of 2014, compared with CHF 13.4 billion at the end of 2013.

Shareholder base
In 2014, there was a significant change in the shareholder base of the Adecco Group. The Company was created in 1996 by the merger of Adia Interim SA and Ecco SA. The major shareholders of these companies – Klaus Jacobs and Philippe Foriel-Destezet, respectively – became Adecco’s largest shareholders. In 2005 and 2006, the Jacobs family acquired a large portion of Philippe Foriel-Destezet’s stake, in the process becoming by far the Group’s largest shareholder. In March 2014, the Jacobs Group sold the majority of its 18.4% stake. At the end of 2014, family members together owned less than 1% of Adecco shares.

Adecco continues to have a broad investor base, made up of over 14,000 shareholders. Following the placings of the Jacobs family, the free float (defined as shares issued minus insider and treasury shares in proportion to the shares issued) stood at 97% on December 31, 2014, and our top 20 shareholders held approximately 49% of the issued and outstanding share capital. European institutional investors had increased their holdings in Adecco to 36% of shares issued at the end of 2014, compared to 32% at the end of 2013. The percentage held by North American institutions increased by 11% to 38%.

At the Annual General Meeeting (AGM) 2014 the cancellation of 10,181,696 shares, representing 5% of Adecco shares, was approved and was correspondingly executed in July. The number of shares in issue was therefore reduced to 179,081,810 shares. The Board of Directors will propose a further cancellation of 4,606,873 shares at the AGM 2015.


Shareholder concentration

as of year end 2014

in % of shares issued

 

 

Top 5 investors

25%

Rest of top 10 investors

10%

Rest of top 20 investors

14%

Rest of top 50 investors

19%

Others

32%


Shareholder structure

in % of shares issued

2014

2013

 

 

 

Institutional:

 

 

• Europe

36%

32%

• North America

38%

27%

• Rest of World

5%

2%

Retail

4%

4%

Insider and treasury

3%

24%

Unassigned

14%

11%


Key data

Download xls sheet

 

2014

2013

 

 

 

Shares issued

179,081,810

189,263,506

Treasury shares

5,633,241

11,125,506

Shares outstanding

173,448,569

178,138,000

Weighted-average shares

176,267,821

180,511,706

Basic earnings per share in EUR

3.62

3.09

Diluted earnings per share in EUR

3.61

3.08

Dividend per share in CHF

2.10 [1]

2.00

Year end share price in CHF

68.85

70.60

Highest share price in CHF

78.60

70.60

Lowest share price in CHF

58.85

47.72

Year end market capitalisation in CHF million [2]

12,330

13,362

Price/earnings ratio [3]

15.8

18.6

Enterprise value [4]/EBITA

12.1

14.6

 

[1]Proposed by the Board of Directors.

[2]Based on shares issued.

[3]Based on basic earnings per share and share price at year end; CHF/EUR per year end 2014: 1.20 (year end 2013: 1.22).

[4]Enterprise value equals net debt plus market capitalisation at year end; CHF/EUR per year end 2014: 1.20 (year end 2013: 1.22).