REA Group Delivers Booming Q3 Performance

REA Group Delivers Booming Q3 Performance

REA Group has announced its results for the nine months ended 31 March 2024 as reported by News Corporation. The News Corp report includes US GAAP financial information for REA Group and its subsidiaries (the Group) for the nine months ended 31 March 2024.

Group financial highlights from core operations for the nine months ended 31 March 2024 include revenue of $1,060 million, up 20 per cent year on year (YoY), and EBITDA excluding associates of $616 million, an increase of 24 per cent.

Q3 revenue grew by 24 per cent to $334 million, driven by strong Australian Residential and Commercial yield and India revenue growth. EBITDA excluding associates increased by 30 per cent to $177 million. A summary table of the key financial information from core operations1 is presented below. The information is presented in Australian dollars and is prepared under AIFRS. All financial growth rates refer to YoY comparisons unless otherwise stated.

REA Group Chief Executive Officer, Owen Wilson commented: “The Australian property market maintained its strong momentum during the quarter with seller confidence and healthy buyer demand driving activity. Australian consumers’ preference for our premium products and our focus on customer value delivered an exceptional result in this strong market.”

Core Australian revenue increased 24 per cent YoY, reflecting double-digit yield growth and continued listings growth across our Residential and Commercial businesses. Excluding the impact of the CampaignAgent acquisition, Australian revenue increased 21 per cent. A summary of the quarterly residential new Buy listings and developer project commencement changes is outlined in the table below, showing changes against the prior corresponding period. National Buy listings increased 6 per cent during the quarter, with Sydney listings rising 20 per cent and Melbourne up 18 per cent.

The Australian Residential business had a strong quarter with revenue up 27 per cent. Buy revenue growth was driven by a 19 per cent increase in Buy yield, 6 per cent growth in national listings and a positive impact of revenue deferral. Buy yield benefited from a 13 per cent average national price rise, increased Premiere+ and total depth penetration, and a positive impact from geographical mix.

Rent revenue increased with an 8 per cent average price rise and growth in depth penetration, partly offset by a 5 per cent decline in listings. Commercial and Developer revenue increased during the quarter. Commercial revenues were driven by an average 11 per cent price rise and increased depth penetration and listings. Developer revenue was flat, with lower project commencements offset by increased project duration.

Media, Data & Other revenues grew during the quarter. Data revenues increased due to higher PropTrack data & insights revenues, while growth in Media revenues was driven by higher developer display partially offset by lower programmatic display. Other revenues increased with strong growth from both Flatmates and CampaignAgent.

Financial Services revenue grew modestly, with increased penetration of higher-margin white label products partially offset by a 2 per cent decline in settlements. The broker network increased 1 per cent YoY to 1,058 at the end of Q3.

Realestate.com.au maintains leadership as Australia’s number one address in property REA Group’s network of brands holds three of the top four rankings across all Australian property websites7 . The flagship site, realestate.com.au remains the number one property site maintaining its strong audience leadership position.

Wilson commented: “Our comprehensive brand strategy covers the full property experience. We have continued to enhance consumer experiences across all platforms and this is delivering strong results with realestate.com.au, realcommercial.com.au and property.com.au each achieving new audience highs in the quarter under Ipsos metrics.

“Our realestate.com.au membership strategy, centred on the delivery of highly personalised experiences, continues to further strengthen the quality of our audience while driving exceptional value for our customers with strong growth both in seller leads and buyer enquiries across the quarter.”

Key audience highlights during the quarter included:

  • 11.2 million people visited realestate.com.au each month on average, with 52 per cent exclusively using realestate.com.au;
  • 130 million average realestate.com.au monthly visits, 4.1 times more visits than the nearest competitor each month on average;
  • 3.5 million unique properties tracked by their owner on realestate.com.au, up 38 per cent YoY;
  • 2.4 million average monthly realestate.com.au buyer enquiries, up 17% YoY;
  • 50 per cent YoY increase in realestate.com.au seller leads;
  • 1.6 million people visited realcommercial.com.au each month on average, 2.7 times more visitors than the nearest competitor each month on average; and
  • Property.com.au is now the clear number three property site, reaching over 2 million visitors in March.

INDIA REA

India continued its momentum during the seasonally strong Q3, with revenue up 31 per cent YoY. Revenue growth was largely driven by Housing.com’s property advertising business, benefiting from another strong Happy New Homes event, increased depth penetration and improving monetisation in Tier 2 cities, and growth in adjacency services on the Housing Edge platform.

CORE OPERATING COSTS

Excluding the impact of the CampaignAgent acquisition, Group operating costs grew 14 per cent. Australian expenses were up 15 per cent, driven by employee costs increasing due to accelerated investment and higher performance related incentives, and increased marketing costs. India operating costs increased by 13 per cent, driven by higher marketing and revenue related costs. Including the impact of the CampaignAgent acquisition, Australian costs were up 20 per cent and Group operating expenses increased 18 per cent.

EQUITY ACCOUNTED INVESTMENTS

The Group’s combined share of associates contributed a $9 million loss to core EBITDA, which compares to a $0.5 million loss in the prior period. This reflects continued tough market conditions in the US and investment for future growth from early-stage investments.

OUTLOOK

Australia’s residential property market remains strong, particularly in the Melbourne and Sydney markets. Supply is benefiting from property prices rising to record levels and increased investor selling in some markets, while demand continues to be supported by strong fundamentals including low unemployment and high levels of immigration. The earlier timing of Easter has impacted growth rates for national residential listings. March declined by 9 per cent YoY, while April increased 32 per cent benefiting from the timing of Easter and a particularly weak comparable in the prior year. Sydney and Melbourne continued to outpace other markets in April, up 45  and 53 per cent respectively YoY. Year-to-date national listings are up 7 per cent. Based on current market conditions, we would anticipate listings growth of 5-7 per cent for FY.




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