News

Leeds-based Lowell Financial, a leading provider of credit management services specialising in debt recovery, data analytics and customer insight, has been accredited with Investors in People (IIP) Gold for a second time. 

With over 900 team members, the Leeds-based company first achieved Gold status in 2012.  Lowell Financial, which is part of the Lowell Group, is just one of 1057 organisations nationwide with Gold Status and one of only 19 in West Yorkshire to have been reassessed and again awarded Investors in People Gold status.

The prestigious award recognises that Lowell Financial operates the highest standards of people management and development to support its team and to achieve its business goals.

To ensure its Gold status was confirmed for another three years, Lowell Financial demonstrated that its senior management is committed to team member communication, training, development, and engagement; and also provided compelling evidence that all team members are fully engaged in the vision, values and development of the business. All of which provide a gold-plated endorsement of Lowell’s position as a highly attractive employer that recognises and supports team members.

James Cornell, Lowell Group’s CEO commented: “This is a fantastic achievement and I’m delighted that we have kept our highly prized Gold status.  Our success is down to the commitment of our fantastic team who embody the Lowell vision by working tirelessly to deliver a first class service to our customers.”

Investors in People is the UK’s leading people management standard.  Launched by the Government in 1991, it exists as a business improvement tool designed to help all kinds of organisations develop performance through their people. Gold, silver and bronze awards were introduced in 2009.

Will Brown, Senior Assessor, Investor in People commented “I’ve assessed over 100 organisations over the past 20 years and Lowell Financial is amongst the most progressive when it comes to investing in people in order to provide a great service to customers for the mutual benefit of stakeholders.”

Since being launched, over 30,000 UK organisations have gained Investor in People accreditation, but less than three per cent of those have gone on to achieve the Gold standard.

To achieve Gold status, organisations must meet a minimum of 165 evidence requirements compared to 39 for the standard Investors in People award.

Lowell Group, a leading consumer credit management company, today announced that it has increased the committed accordion on its existing revolving credit facility (“RCF”) from £83 million to £215 million, the accordion being subject to balance sheet conditions in keeping with the growth ambitions of the company.  This new funding has been achieved with the support of the company’s existing lenders the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Lloyds Bank and JPMorgan together with new funding attracted from HSBC and DNB Bank ASA (“DNB”).

The increase in funding is provided at a rate of LIBOR plus 350 bps and is the largest reported RCF within its market. The additional funding also extends the term of the agreement from March 30th 2018 to February 28th 2019.  All the other terms in the credit facility, aside from the revised margin and the term, remain the same as the original agreement terms.

Colin Storrar, Lowell Group’s CFO commented: “We value the continued support of our existing lending partners and are naturally delighted that we have attracted additional funding from our new supporters – HSBC and DNB.  The increase in our RCF is a strong endorsement of our current plans and our future ambitions. We now have an even greater opportunity to build on our successes and continue our strong track record of growth as we move forward.”

Lowell Group posts strong Q2 results highlighting continued growth, prudent leverage and strong visible liquidity

Lowell Group, a UK leader in consumer debt recovery services, today announces continued strong performance in the second quarter of its 2015 financial year (1 January 2015 to 31 March 2015).

Its interim financial results for the quarter maintain the Group’s track record for delivering consistent and sustainable growth, high returns and visible earnings.

Highlights

  • Collections of £55.9 million in the quarter, up 14% compared with Q2 2014.
  • Adjusted EBITDA of £34.8 million in the quarter, up 10% compared with Q2 2014.
  • 84 month estimated remaining collections (ERC) of £742.4 million, up 19% since 31 March, 2014.
  • 48% of ERC (£353.4 million) expected to be recovered as cash within 24 months
  • Cash asset return (adjusted EBITDA/average ERC) of 19.6%for 12 months to 31 March 2015.
  • £126.1 million of free cash flow before debt and tax servicing has been generated in the last twelve months to March 2015.
  • £31.2 million of diversified portfolio investments in the quarter (97% from repeat clients) and £119.0 million already achieved or committed for FY 15.
  • Customer account numbers since inception increased to 17.0m from 13.9m as at 31 March 2014, an increase of 22% over the last 12 months.
  • As at 31 March 2015, the aggregate face value of debt purchased since inception totalled £13.7 billion, a 14% increase from the same period in 2014.
  • Loan to value ratio (net debt/ERC) reduced from 57% at original bond issuance to 50% at 31 March 2015. (51% at 31 March 2014).
  • Net debt to adjusted EBITDA is at 2.8x cover at 31 March 2015 with fixed charge cover ratio at 3.5x cover at the same date.

Commenting on the results, Colin Storrar, CFO, said:

“We’ve achieved another quarter of strong financials. Compared to Q2 2014, our Q2 2015 collections were up 14% to £55.9 million and EBITDA was up 10% to £34.8 million. At the same time our balance sheet continues to grow – our 84 month estimated remaining collections (ERC) now stands at £742.4m, an increase of 19% or £117m from March 2014. In addition, we continue to see value beyond our 84 month accounting period with our 120 month ERC increasing by 18% (£128m) to £829m.

“This cash flow visibility means we are well placed to invest in further purchases to satisfy our investment appetite, while the number and volume of our forward flow agreements and the fact we purchase across financial services, home retail credit and telecommunications clearly helps us achieve our purchasing goals.

“Our business also continues to focus upon maintaining discipline in pricing new investments, harnessing the significant data asset and analytic capabilities that the business benefits from.

“Our application to the FCA for a full licence continues to gather pace, with formal submission on track by the end of August. Customer centricity will be central to our application, something recognised by Investors In Customers who recently awarded us with a 3 star assessment; the highest that is available.

“In summary, we continue to report strong financial performance, strong medium term growth prospects and the ongoing support and backing of two major investment houses in TDR Capital and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.”

Lowell Group will announce its interim financial results for Q2 2015 (1 Jan 2015 – 31 March 2015) on Thursday 21 May 2015.

The results will be available for download via Lowell’s investor website:

http://www.lowellgroup.co.uk/index.php/investors

 

Investor call – 15.00hrs BST.

Lowell Group’s CFO, Colin Storrar, is scheduled to hold an audio conference presentation on the company’s performance at 15.00hrs BST on Thursday 21 May 2015.

To access this audio conference, you will need to register in advance at:

http://emea.directeventreg.com/registration/46515075

You will then be allocated the conference call number, a participant user pin, conference pin and instructions on how to join the conference call. For security purposes please do not give out these details for others to use, all participants must register individually if they wish to join the call.

Lowell Group will announce its interim financial results for Q1 2015 (1 Oct 2014 – 31 December 2014) on Tuesday 24 February 2015.

The results will be available for download via Lowell’s investor website:

http://www.lowellgroup.co.uk/index.php/investors

 

Investor call – 14.00hrs GMT.

Lowell Group’s CFO, Colin Storrar, is scheduled to hold an audio conference presentation on the company’s performance at 14.00hrs GMT on Tuesday 24 February 2015.

To access this audio conference, you will need to register in advance at:

http://emea.directeventreg.com/registration/83332606

You will then be allocated the conference call number, a participant user pin, conference pin and instructions on how to join the conference call. For security purposes please do not give out these details for others to use, all participants must register individually if they wish to join the call.