U.K.-based Tarsus Group Scores Like-for-like 8 Percent Revenue Uptick in 2016

March 1, 2017

In a year when two of its largest biennial shows – Labelexpo Europe and Dubai Airshow - did not run, U.K.-based Tarsus Group scored like-for-like revenue growth of 8 percent and across the portfolio buyers increased by 7 percent on a like for like basis in 2016, well ahead of the company’s target of 5 percent.

“Our 'Quickening the Pace' growth strategy continued to deliver in 2016. Organic growth was strong at 8 percent, and we grew our buyer attendance, a key metric for us, by a very encouraging 7 percent,” said Douglas Emslie, Tarsus Group’s managing director.

He added, “Strategically, we delivered 10 new replications of our leading brands and further deepened our presence in the world’s largest exhibition markets, the US and China, with three earnings enhancing acquisitions towards the end of the year.”

Some other financial highlights from Tarsus’ 2016 report were 13 percent revenue growth to £68.4 million ($84.2 million), compared with £60.6 million ($74.5 million) in 2014, as well as adjusted profit before tax of £19.2 million ($23.6 million) in 2016, compared with £17 million ($21 million) in 2014.

Last year was a busy one for Tarsus, as the company continued to expand its fast-growing portfolio worldwide.

There were four new acquisitions, including CONNECT in the U.S., Intex and Hometex in China and PEP in Southeast Asia.

The CONNECT acquisition occurred in December, with Tarsus acquiring 80.1 percent of the company.

Connect serves the business travel and meetings sector through a combination of national, regional and vertically focused events which are supplemented by an integrated media offering.

These events bring together meeting professionals and planners with suppliers from the business travel and meetings sector.

In addition to increasing Tarsus’ exposure to the important US market, the potential expansion of Connect both within the US and internationally offers an attractive growth opportunity.

Emslie said of the CONNECT acquisition at the time: “Following the recent acquisition of Intex in China, which brought two world class exhibitions into the Group – Music China and CES Asia, we are delighted to be acquiring Connect Meetings in the US. The US and China are two of the world’s largest exhibition markets and both are a key area of focus for Tarsus.”

He added, “These acquisitions tick all of the boxes of our Quickening the Pace strategy. We are also pleased to have acquired Connect Meetings as companies of this size and quality are increasingly difficult to find.”

In addition to the acquisitions, Tarsus also had 10 new brand replications globally.

Despite some geopolitical uncertainty, 2017 is off to a good start for Tarsus, especially with its two big biennials – Labelexpo Europe and Dubai Airshow – tracking ahead with bookings.

“We are anticipating increasing economic activity in the geographies and sectors served by our exhibitions, with the exception of Turkey, and have budgeted accordingly,” Emslie said.

He added, “Forward bookings for 2017 are 10 percent ahead. Whilst we are mindful of geopolitical uncertainty, 2017 – the larger year in our biennial cycle – is looking exciting for the Group."

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