Press release

SDL plc Half Year Results for the Six Months Ended 30 June 2019

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SDL plc (“SDL” or the “Group”), the global innovator in language translation technology, services and content management, today announces its half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2019.

Financial Highlights

Unaudited Results




Six months to 30 June




















Operating profit








Adjusted operating profit2








Profit before tax








Basic earnings per share








Diluted earnings per share








Adjusted diluted earnings per share3




1 Proforma is used for illustrative purposes based on unaudited management accounts of the pre-acquisition period of DLS

2 Adjusted operating profit: Operating profit before acquisition related amortisation and exceptional items (as reconciled on the income statement to the half year results)

3 Adjusted earnings: Profit after tax before the impact of exceptional items and acquisition related amortisation (as reconciled in note 5 of the half year results)

4 1H18 results have not been restated for the impact of IFRS 16 – Leases (see note 1 of the half year results)

  • Revenue benefited from Pound Sterling to US Dollar exchange rate
  • Before IFRS 16 adjustments, adjusted operating profit was £15.5m
  • Group gross margin of 51.5% (1H18: 52.9%), reflecting increased contribution to total revenue from Language Services
  • Net cash5 at 30 June 2019 was £1.1m (31 December 2018: £14.4m). At 31 July 2019, the Group’s net cash balance was £11.0m

Operational Highlights

  • The acquisition of Donnelley Language Solutions (“DLS”) (acquired in July 2018) has performed very well, accelerating SDL’s strategy and receiving positive feedback from customers and employees
  • Positive momentum from sales and marketing strategy, delivering growth in premium regulated services, strategic accounts, machine translation and new customer wins
  • Strong growth in premium services6 revenues to £52.0m (1H18: £18.6m), accounting for 40% of Language Services revenues (1H18: 20%)
  • Improved productivity in Language Services resulting in higher gross margin at 42.1% (1H18: 41.8%), including presently lower margin DLS
  • Further progress with the Language Services automation programme, with 80% of addressable clients on Helix in June 2019. Linguistic Utilisation7 increased to 57.6% for the first half (1H18: 54.3%)
  • Actions on corporate overheads and synergies on track to deliver £8m of annualised savings by year end
  • Investment into market-leading innovations, including the industry’s first end-to-end, AI-enabled translation platform, SDL Language Cloud, which will be launched in September

5 Net cash: Net cash comprises cash and cash equivalents and external borrowings

6 Premium Services revenue: Comprises Regulated Language Services (Finance, Legal, Life Sciences) plus Marketing Solutions

7 Linguistic Utilisation: The percentage of time in-house linguists spent on billable work across the financial period

Adolfo Hernandez, CEO of SDL plc, said:

We are pleased to have delivered a good start to the year, which resulted in a 14% increase in adjusted diluted EPS over the prior year, benefiting from the acquisition of DLS and strong growth in key areas such as premium services and machine translation. During the first half, we continued to deliver on our transformation strategy, including the roll out of our automation programme, Helix, and completed the development of our next generation end-to-end translation platform, SDL Language Cloud, ahead of its launch in September. We enter the traditionally stronger second half with good sales momentum and a healthy sales pipeline. This, alongside the actions that we are taking on productivity, gives us confidence of delivering improved profitability for the full year, in line with management expectations.”

To see the full press release, please visit the investor relations section of our website.

About SDL

SDL (LSE: SDL) is the global leader in content creation, translation and delivery. For over 27 years we’ve helped companies communicate with confidence and deliver transformative business results by enabling powerful experiences that engage customers across multiple touchpoints worldwide. Are you in the know? Find out why 90 of the top 100 global companies work with and trust us on Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.