Belfast Telegraph

US poll predictions help YouGov profits rise 27% to £6.3m

Pollster YouGov said its US presidential election predictions had outperformed its rivals as it cheered rising revenues and profits .

The firm said group revenues lifted by 24% to £51.4 million in the six months to the end of January, while adjusted pre-tax profits rose 27% to £6.3 million.

The jump was underpinned by its data products and services division, with revenues climbing 39% to £22 million over the period.

The Aim-listed firm said its national poll for the US presidential election had a 1.4% margin of error , which was within the expected standard and more accurate than other pollsters.

It said awareness of the company across America had "increased significantly" after delivering US election polling for CBS News.

Chief executive Stephan Shakespeare said the firm's growth rate had outperformed the rest of the global research market.

"This performance has been driven by the continued strong growth in our subscription-based data products and our fast turnaround data services," he added.

"This progress has been complemented by steady margin improvements in the more traditional custom research services.

"Trading during the second half of our financial year has started positively and is in line with our expectations.

"We have built a strong base and continue to see significant opportunity to further grow revenues from data products and data services and deliver on our long-term objectives."

YouGov, which has 32 offices in 21 countries, said US revenues climbed by 29% and UK revenues rose by 8% as custom research grew by 13%.

It said custom research revenues jumped 15% to £29.6 million, with operating profits rising 26% to £3.5 million.

Mr Shakespeare added: " We are consistently delivering against our strategy and making good progress towards our ambitious goals.

"We are investing in technology, constantly improving the scope and depth of our data and leveraging our highly sophisticated core data engine, YouGov Cube.

"This focus has helped us continue to outperform the market and it is enabling YouGov to expand in new markets and become a powerful global data and analytics brand."

Opinion pollsters came under fire in the wake of the EU referendum campaign after they failed to predict that Britain would vote for Brexit.