In the year that it celebrated its 50th anniversary, I am delighted to report that Euroclear made remarkable progress in 2018.
The group delivered record levels of financial performance, with net profit rising 36% year on year to €322 million, while also completing several important corporate evolutions.
Having consulted with a number of shareholders and taken into consideration the implications of the corporate restructuring on the shareholder base as a whole, the Board envisages approving the payment of a dividend in the fourth quarter of 2019 under the form of an interim distribution.
As such, the Board is not recommending to shareholders to approve the payment of a dividend at the Annual General Meeting as part of the usual yearly profit allocation process. Instead, the Board will decide on an interim dividend in accordance with the Belgian Companies Code and Euroclear Holding SA/NV’s Articles of Association. The Board expects the timing of future dividend payments to revert back to normal after this exceptional payment has taken place.
As guidance, the Board indicates that a dividend in the order of magnitude of €55 per share (up 41% compared to 2017 full year dividend) would be consistent with the company distribution policy, and represent a slight increase in the pay-out ratio from 52% to 54%.