The REA Group has released it results for the year ended 30 June 2015. Financial highlights from core operations include revenue growth of 20% on the prior year to $522.9m, an increase in EBITDA of 27% to $285.8m, and Net Profit growth of 24% to $185.4m.
The reported Net Profit of $210.2m (up 40%) includes profit from the sale of marketable securities and the Squarefoot business and the share of losses from associates.
REA Group CEO Tracey Fellows said: “Our Australian business continues to go from strength to strength. We’ve achieved 20% revenue growth despite listing volumes in the Australian market being down 4%.
“We’ve accomplished this by providing our customers more choice and better value and by giving the 3.4 million people who use our sites monthly an exceptional experience.
“Our strategy to take our expertise both internationally and to new markets gathered pace this year. We have expanded into the world’s largest property market, the US with Move; as well as one of the fastest growing regions through our iProperty investment in Asia.
“And we launched our utility connections service that is helping movers compare and connect services to their property, such as gas, electricity and subscription TV.
The Board has declared a final dividend of 40.5 cents per share fully franked, a 16% increase on the 2014 final dividend.
Australian revenues increased by 21% to $472.8 million this year with agent customers increasing by 5% to 9,922 for the year ended 30 June 2015.
A significant increase in the take up of premium listing products and the introduction of market based pricing delivered a 21% increase in revenue in the residential business on the prior year. This was achieved in a market where property listing volumes in the Australian market declined by 4%.
The commercial business recorded 9% revenue growth in the period, due to increased sales of premium listing products. Revenue from our display media and property developer business increased by 25% on the prior year due to the success of our project profiles product and continued growth in media display advertising revenue.
Independent sources demonstrate realestate.com.au’s undeniable market leadership position:
Average monthly visits to realestate.com.au main and mobile sites grew 26% and are 24.3 million higher per month than that of the number two site (36.5 million vs 12.2 million average monthly visits)
realestate.com.au has 5.7 times more time on site which is a key indicator of audience engagement (242 vs 42 million average minutes per month)
The average number of monthly page views on realestate.com.au is 991 million, 6.4 times the number two site.
Innovation during the year included the launch of agent profiles, our first to market Apple Watch app, 3D virtual property inspections for new developments and our Discover tool, helping property seekers explore a wider range of properties. We also launched our utility connections services making it easier for consumers to connect their property to electricity, gas, broadband, phone and subscription TV.
Our European operations include Italian property site casa.it, Luxembourg’s atHome.lu and atOffice.lu, and property sites in regions of France and Germany, immoRegion.fr and atHome.de.
Together, our European operations achieved 6% revenue growth (10% in local currency) to $45.6 million (€31.8 million) and 85% EBITDA growth to $9.7 million (€6.7 million).
Average monthly visits to our combined European sites increased by 7% to 10.6 million.
As the Italian property market continued to improve, casa.it invested in increasing brand awareness and market share. The site grew agent numbers and increased listing volumes by 20% this year. Casa.it launched a new mobile site and app, with enhanced depth products for customers and consumers.
Our Luxembourg business continued to expand into regions of France under the immoRegion.fr brand, demonstrating our ability to grow in new markets. The immoRegion.fr now operates in four regions including Nord-Pas-de-Calais, where it is already leading the competition in listing volumes and agency customers.
In Asia, one of the fastest growing real estate markets in the world, we operate the myfun.com site and have a strategic investment in iProperty Group Limited (IPP).
myfun.com supports the Australian listings business by showcasing Australian residential property listings to Chinese buyers, investors and delivering leads to agents. Launched in 2014, myfun.com attracted average monthly visits of 73 thousand during the year.
We recently announced our increased holding in IPP, operator of Asia’s leading network of property sites, to 21.33% (as at 17 July 2015). We are contributing to its future strategy through our representation on the IPP Board and are confident of its growth potential. Following the acquisition of thinkofliving.com in Thailand, IPP is now the clear market leader in Malaysia, the Hong Kong region, Thailand and Indonesia.
In the United States we have a 20% holding in Move, Inc. operator of realtor.com®, a leading real estate portal. Since we invested in Move in November 2014, new branding and a high-profile marketing campaign has been launched and visits have increased to 34 million unique users (+52% yoy) as at June 2015. This positions realtor.com as the number two property portal in the United States, the world’s largest residential real estate market.