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Micro Focus hikes dividend after profits surge 30pct

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Business software group Micro Focus (LON:MCRO) decided to significantly increase its dividend after its full year performance met expectations.

Pre-tax profits for the year to end April climbed 30.4 percent to US$149.3 million and earnings per share improved 39.8 percent to 65.77 cents despite a small decline in revenues, which fell to US$434.8 million from US$436.1 million in the previous year.

Macro said it got a boost from strong performance in Japan and the Asia Pacific region, while the North American business performed in line with expectations, offsetting falling revenues in the international region, which includes the euro zone.

The surge in profits prompted the company to hike its final dividend by 44.4 percent to 23.4 cents.

“The year...was a period of stabilization of Micro Focus' business after the disappointments of the previous year and the opportunistic approaches from private equity,” said executive chairman of Micro Focus Kevin Loosemore.

The group expects the uncertainty in Europe to continue, and, as a result, revenues for the current financial year will be in the range of one percent to minus-three percent on the prior year.

“Our strategy of driving strong cash generation and using this to reinvest in our products and to generate enhanced returns for shareholders remains unchanged,” Loosemore added.

Investors welcomed the update, sending shares in Micro Focus up 4.5 percent to 471.5 pence by 10:30am, valuing the group at £772 million.

Quick facts: Micro Focus International plc

Price: 1087.6 GBX

LSE:MCRO
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £3.63 billion
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