Message from the board
Very good financial results
Q-Park closed 2016 with very good results. We have continued the upward trend that commenced in 2015. The revenue increased by 2 percent compared to 2015 and came out at EUR 825.0 million. The EBITDA is EUR 194.9 million (2015: EUR 185.0 million) which represents a growth of 5.4 percent. The net result grew from EUR 90.9 million in 2015 to EUR 128.9 million in 2016 which is an excellent performance.
(x EUR million)
We are right on schedule with the four-year plan that our shareholders approved in 2015. In the past year, we have reinforced the foundations in all areas of our business, which will enable us to grow and flourish in the coming years.
Our focus on the quality of our investments, higher utilisation rates by optimising commercial opportunities, and continuing attention to operational efficiency have also contributed to the positive developments. It is precisely in times like we are currently experiencing, where social and technological developments emerge in rapid succession and when little is certain, that Q-Park will and can be a qualitative and functional anchor that society can count on.
Attractive investment proposition
More important for the longer term is that we underpin our position as a parking services provider, which adds value for all its stakeholders, with stable cash flows, robust funding and a cost-effective investment property portfolio. With this, Q-Park will become less dependent on fluctuations in the economy and our results will be more predictable.
The Q-Park investment property portfolio includes long-term positions that generate predictable cash flows and forms an attractive proposition for new shareholders seeking a long-term stable business with good cash flow visibility. We are well-positioned and our financial situation is stable and strong.
In September, our shareholders initiated a market orientation, in order to sell their shares. We consider this shareholder market orientation to be an exciting and unique opportunity for growth.
ICT plays a crucial role in standardisation as well as enabling a flexible response to local requirements. We bring in knowledge and offer technical solutions, such as automatic number plate recognition and paying by smartphone or payment card. We have also developed and implemented a solution which enables motorists to enter and exit our car parks using their own debit or credit card. In 2016 we invested considerably in the development of our innovative Contact-to-Contract (C2C) proprietary system. Development is ongoing and we are continually improving and expanding the functionality. This is a true enabler for our future development and implementation of new and innovative services for commercial partners and customers.
We are already reaping the benefits of our ICT developments. Our new proprietary system and landlord portal enable us to facilitate the customer’s journey, in both the virtual and physical sense, from the comfort of their home to their final destination. Our back-office operations run on a profound digital infrastructure which seamlessly integrates with our front-office – our websites and car parks – where commercial partners and customers can interact, for example to find parking solutions online, order a season ticket, or pre-book a parking space.
This year we have asked our internal and external stakeholders to understand the issues that they consider most relevant. We are grateful to them for their efforts to familiarise themselves with our sector. The outcome (see materiality analysis) gives us good insight into whether and where we can make improvements. It also tells us that our efforts to display certain material topics within this report was the right choice. For us, this goes without saying. We report to our stakeholders about the themes that are relevant to them, in this report and on our website.
We create value through our portfolio of parking facilities at key locations, we offer landlords and municipalities a range of contract types and value propositions which are supported by our unique digital and pricing optimisation capabilities. We strive for operational excellence in all our activities and with the regional structure we introduced in 2015, we learn from each other and share our best practices. Our continually developing ICT platform enables us to provide these services effectively and efficiently.
We contribute to societal value with our parking products: they improve the quality of life in urban areas and help reduce air pollution generated by traffic cruising for a place to park. We enhance our employees' job satisfaction and their competences by providing relevant training.
And for the parking customer, we add value by providing functional products and services and by involving them in our activities.
Contribution to quality of life
Q-Park wants to grow in cities with attractive market dynamics and sees good opportunities for this strategy. Urbanisation continues: population is declining faster than expected in rural areas. This affects the number of passenger cars and the demand for parking spaces, which will continue to grow in large cities. This drift coincides with the trend towards increasingly autonomous and more environmentally friendly cars. One of the accompanying challenges for municipalities is to maintain a liveable city.
Our strategy to achieve leading market positions fits in with this seamlessly. In Amsterdam, for example, our leading position has enabled us to implement relevant solutions to improve the quality of life in the city. One feature allows residential parking permit holders to park their cars in our parking facilities at night, reducing search traffic. The city, the residents and Q-Park benefit from this synergetic collaboration.
We want to make better use of the strength of our organisation, not only for our customers but also for our employees. That is why we held an international employee satisfaction survey this year which will serve as a baseline assessment for employee motivation and satisfaction. The outcome has already been used to initiate dialogue with our employees about possible adjustments and an action plan with concrete goals were set to make improvements where appropriate.
On 1 January 2017 Theo Thuis stepped down from the Executive Board to fulfil a new role within Q-Park as head of our new innovation team. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Theo for his contribution to the Board as COO for the past 16 years. We wish him the very best in his new role.
We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our employees in the country organisations and at head office. Without their commitment and dedication, we would not be able to deliver a quality parking experience to our customers.
Marcello Iacono - CFO
Maastricht, 8 March 2017