Hyve Group plc today announces a trading update for the period from 1 October 2020 to the date of this announcement. This coincides with the Group's Annual General Meeting which is being held at 9am today.



Trading

In the first quarter of FY21 the Group ran eight events, including WorldFood Istanbul, the Group’s first event held in Turkey since the onset of the pandemic, as well as further events in Russia, Ukraine and China. These events saw a high quality of domestic attendance albeit at a significantly reduced scale given ongoing international travel restrictions due to COVID-19. This takes the total number of events run by the Group since the onset of the pandemic to 20. Q1 is typically the Group’s smallest quarter by revenue, with fewer events taking place.

Retail Meetup, acquired in December 2020, has encouraging forward bookings for the upcoming events in March and May 2021 and further enhances our omnichannel approach.

For in-person events, while the near term continues to remain highly fluid, the Group is encouraged that vaccinations have started in earnest across the major markets in which Hyve operates.
 

Insurance claims

In FY20 the Group successfully secured £22.0m of income from insurance claims. As announced at Hyve’s final results, during Q1 £13.1m of claims related to FY20 events had been received and a further £11.5m of claims had been approved, but not yet paid. The Group can now confirm that the £11.5m of claim proceeds have now been received, taking the total insurance payments received to date to £46.7m. These amounts are in respect of the policies insuring FY20 event cancellations, capped at £62m. The Group has received confirmation of a further interim payment of £8.4m (£4.5m in respect of certain FY20 events and £3.9m in respect of one FY21 event, with payment awaited).

Insurance cover is in place for the cancellation of FY21 events, with potential claims capped at £50.0m. The Group expects to be able to provide further updates on FY21 insurance claims at its FY21 Interim Results.
 

Acquisition of Retail Meetup - Accelerating the omnichannel strategy

COVID-19 has demonstrated that whilst in-person events remain a critical forum to learn, network and trade, customers now want more touchpoints across the year in a more diverse range of formats. The events industry has not been able to solve how to deliver effective networking and trading opportunities in a virtual environment at scale, which is what many customers need and will increasingly look for in the future.

On 21 December 2020, the Group acquired Retail Meetup for an initial consideration of £18.8m to help solve this issue, enabling at-scale networking and lead generation with custom-built software by bringing the entire ecommerce ecosystem together online.

This ground-breaking remote collaboration proposition is setting a new standard for facilitated networking to conduct business online for the retail and grocery ecommerce industry with proven monetisation. Retail Meetup adds four high quality fully digital events that are expected to be earnings enhancing with clear potential to scale, highly encouraging initial customer response and strong sales performance.

Our upcoming Retail Meetup events include: Groceryshop Spring Meetup (9-11 March 2021) and Shoptalk Meetup for Women (11-13 May 2021) to take place in FY21, while Shoptalk Europe Meetup (dates tbc) and Shoptalk Fall Meetup (19-21 October 2021) are scheduled for FY22.
 

Outlook

The Group is encouraged that vaccinations have started in earnest across the major markets in which Hyve operates however, the near-term outlook remains fluid. We expect continued disruption to our event schedule and a gradual return of customer participation, particularly in western countries.

As announced at the Group’s FY20 Final Results, Hyve has modelled two trading scenarios for FY21. The first, the 'Recovery' scenario, assumes that only events in China, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey are able to go ahead in the first half of FY21 but that all events currently scheduled will take place during the second half. The second scenario, the 'East-West' scenario, assumes that no western events will take place throughout the entire year. Both scenarios remain possible and assume events will be smaller than in previous years, with a largely domestic customer base. In either scenario we have visibility of cash headroom throughout FY21.

The Group maintains its strong liquidity position and continues to focus on cash generation and preservation. Strong demand for in-person events to return continues and with market-leading events leading the way for the recovery into FY22 our strategy and focus on building an omnichannel business positions Hyve well for a post COVID-19 environment as markets re-open.
 

Mark Shashoua, CEO of Hyve Group plc said:

“Hyve enters 2021 with a strong platform to weather the COVID-19 crisis due to the decisive action taken in 2020 to strengthen our financial position, conserve cash, secure substantial insurance payments and, most recently, by accelerating our omnichannel strategy having completed the acquisition of Retail Meetup.

“In Q1 we have been able to run eight events, including our first event held in Turkey since the onset of the pandemic and while it’s encouraging to see the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines have started in earnest across the major markets in which Hyve operates, the near term remains highly fluid.

“We have done everything in our control to position Hyve at the forefront of the recovery. As in-person events continue to return, Hyve’s market-leading events are optimally placed to service the pent-up demand for learning, networking and trading whilst stimulating the global economy. The evolution of our strategy into an omnichannel business has been accelerated through the recent acquisition of Retail Meetup, enabling our customers to learn, network and trade online, presenting an exciting new avenue of growth for Hyve. Retail Meetup combined with our strong financial platform and market-leading in-person events provides us with a springboard to emerge successfully from the pandemic.”

 

For further information please contact:

Hyve Group plc Mark Shashoua / John Gulliver                                                          +44 (0)20 3545 9400

FTI Consulting Charles Palmer / Emma Hall / Chris Birt / Jamille Smith                    +44 (0)20 3727 1000
 

About Hyve Group plc

Hyve Group plc is a next-generation global events business whose purpose is to bring together and connect entire sector ecosystems from all corners of the globe. We meet our customer needs to learn, network and trade via both market-leading in person and online events. Hyve Group plc is all about globally consistent best practice and unrivalled quality. Our vision is to create the world's leading portfolio of content-driven, must-attend events delivering an outstanding experience and ROI for our customers. Hyve’s market-leading portfolio of global brands include: Shoptalk, Spring Fair, MosBuild, Bett, Mining Indaba and recently acquired Retail Meetup, a ground-breaking digital platform enabling online networking and trade to take place at scale.

Where business is personal, where meetings move markets and where today's leaders inspire tomorrow's.

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