AJ Bell profit £49m as revenue soars to £127m

Shares of Manchester-based investment platform AJ Bell rose about 5% on Thursday after it said its revenue rose 21% to £126.7 million in the year to September 30 and profit before tax rose 29% to £48.6 million.

Final dividend will be 4.66p per share, which takes the total dividend for the year to 6.16p per share, an increase of 28%.

Total customers increased by a record 63,239 in the year, up 27% to 295,305.

Total net inflows were £4.2 billion (FY19: £3.9 billion), driven by platform net inflows of £4.9 billion (FY19: £4.3 billion).

Total assets under administration (AUA) were up 8% during the year to £56.5 billion compared to a 19% fall in the FTSE All-Share Index.

Customer retention rate remained high at 95.5% (FY19: 95.4%).

AJ Bell CEO Andy Bell said: “This has been another year of strong growth, with high levels of new customers and record dealing activity driving a 29% increase in profit before tax to £48.6m.

“Our focus on providing an easy-to-use platform at a competitive price has resulted in growth in customer numbers and assets under administration of 27% and 8% respectively during a year when the FTSE All-Share Index fell by 19%.

“In light of this strong financial performance, the board recommends a final ordinary dividend of 4.66p per share, taking the total ordinary dividend for the year to 6.16p per share.

“This is an increase of 28% on the previous year and extends our record of increasing our ordinary dividend every year since we paid our first dividend in 2004.

“The long-term growth drivers of the platform market remain strong, with customers increasingly looking for good value, online solutions and we are well positioned to benefit from those trends.”