Cushman & Wakefield plc (NYSE:CWK) Q1 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

May 07, 2019 • 05:00 pm ET


Cushman & Wakefield plc (NYSE:CWK) Q1 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Welcome to Cushman & Wakefield's First Quarter 2019 Earnings Conference Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speaker's remarks, there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator instruction)

It is now my pleasure to introduce Bill Knightly, EVP of Investor Relations and Treasurer for Cushman & Wakefield. Mr. Knightly, you may begin the conference.

Bill Knightly

Thank you. And welcome again to Cushman & Wakefield's first quarter 2019 earnings conference call. Earlier today we issued a press release announcing our financial results for the period. This release can be found on our Investor Relations website along with today's presentation pages that you can use to follow along. These materials can be found at

Please turn to the page labeled Forward-Looking Statements. Today's presentation contains forward-looking statements based on our current forecasts and estimates of future events. These statements should be considered estimates only and actual results may differ materially.

During today's call, we may refer to non-GAAP financial measures, as outlined by SEC guidelines. Reconciliations of GAAP to non-GAAP are found within the financial tables of our earnings release and appendix of today's presentation. I'd like to remind you that the Company uses fee revenue, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted earnings per share and local currency to improve comparability of current results and to assist our investors in analyzing the underlying performance of our business. You will find definitions of these non-GAAP financial measures and other more detailed financial information in the tables of today's earnings release and the Form 8-K and our Annual Report on Form 10-K. In addition, I would like to note that throughout the presentation comparisons and growth rates are to the comparable period of 2018 and in local currency. For those of you following along with our presentation, we will begin on page five.

And with that, I'd like to turn the call over to our Executive Chairman and CEO, Brett White.

Brett White

Thank you, Bill, and thank you all for joining us today. I'm pleased to report we continue to see good momentum in our business with strong double-digit growth in fee revenue and adjusted EBITDA in the first quarter. Our sustained strong performance is a result of our continued focus on our top growth priorities and an environment that remains favorable for real estate services.

As a reminder, here our areas of strategic focus. Revenue and share growth through the delivery of differentiated and best-in-class service to our clients. Strategic recruiting and infill M&A to continue to expand our strong global platform. Leveraging our strength in our large and growing recurring revenue businesses and continued margin growth through operational discipline. By these measures, the first quarter was a good continuation of the momentum we experienced throughout 2018.

We saw double-digit growth at the top and bottom lines in the first quarter growing fee revenue by 13% and adjusted EBITDA by 19%. Led by strong performance in our leasing and in our property facilities and project management service lines. We also continued