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CountryWide plc CWD : unveils annual mixed bag results, after a tumultuous year + Zoopla strong start trading year report

Countrywide Plc, the UK largest estate agency by revenue, has reported to the City on its 2015 activities , it has been, a tumultuous last 12 months, key staff departures and loss of market capitalisation. Zoopla has also made a AGM trade report. [see below]

CountryWide Plc , Mixed bag of results, received with disappointment from the City 

Estate agent Countrywide PLC on Thursday posted a lower pretax profit for 2015 following a tough year for the company due to a slowdown in transactions in the London market.

Countrywide said its pretax profit for the year was down to GBP47.7 million from GBP79.6 million a year earlier, though revenue increased to GBP733.7 million from GBP702.2 million. The reduced profit was driven by weaker profitability in its estate agency and lettings businesses in the year, which resulted in earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation falling 7.0%.

Financial services and surveying both performed well over the year, however, and the group said it has seen encouraging trading in its commercial property unit.

It said it would pay a flat final dividend of 10.0 pence, leaving its total dividend also flat at 15.0p, but said it would not pay a special dividend, having paid out 9.0p in 2014.

"2015 was a challenging year but we also made strong progress in creating solid foundations for the business to grow as planned in the coming few years," said Alison Platt, Countrywide's chief executive.

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Zoopla Property Group ,good start to trading year AGM statement :

Zoopla Property Group PLC Thursday said it has had a "solid start" to the financial year, attracting record levels of visits to its websites in January, and said it plans to launch a number of new and innovative products later in the year.

Zoopla, which owns consumer brands focused around property including uSwitch and PrimeLocation, said it has performed well in terms of trading since the start of October, attracting an average of 47.0 million monthly visits to its websites and mobile apps.

In January, Zoopla said it attracted a "record audience" of 58.0 million visits to its sites and apps.

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