Having emerged as Australia’s fastest growing allied health portfolio over the past 12 months, healthcare operator Healthia (ASX: HLA) has reported record revenue and earnings while supporting their staff with minimal roster changes despite COVID lockdowns and the absence of JobKeeper assistance.
Amid ongoing lockdowns over the past six months and the Omicron outbreak, Healthia was impacted by reduced clinic operating hours while their retail footwear stores were closed all together. As a result of these Government-imposed restrictions, a total of 6,869 trading days were impacted across Healthia’s 292 allied health clinics in the six months to 31 December 2021. This was more than the 2,152 impacted in the previous half year.
Despite these challenges, Healthia reported $93 million in revenue for the half year which represented a 51.3% increase on the previous year. This translated to $12.2m in underlying EBITDA, an 11.1% increase. Shareholders will be issued a 2 cents per share interim dividend, the same payout as last year which is again backed by a fully underwritten dividend reinvestment plan.
“On behalf of the Healthia Board, it is most important to thank our clinicians and support staff for the incredible strength and commitment they have demonstrated during what has been a tough time,” said Healthia CEO and Managing Director, Wesley Coote.
“The support they have shown to their patients and each other is to be commended and Healthia is stronger for it. As we head into 2022 and our “new normal” we will continue our focus on providing excellence in patient care and supporting our team members which are key factors in the ongoing success of the Company.”
Earnings were ultimately impacted by Healthia’s initiative to support their staff while on reduced hours which resulted in EBITDA margins decreasing to 13.1%, down from 17.9%.
With the national vaccination rates now having met Government targets however, it is unlikely the same restrictions will impact Healthia going forward with the Company expecting their portfolio to start FY23 with annualised EBITDA of more than $40 million pencilled in. This increase accounts for the $88.4 million acquisition of 63 Back In Motion clinics which only settled in December 2021.
To accommodate their expected growth in the years to come, Healthia is continuing to invest in their talent pipeline which has included 154 healthcare graduates in their 2024 intake. This is a substantial increase on the 64 they recruited last year as Healthia has become an employer of choice after independent analysts categorised the Company as a ‘Culture of Success’ in their 2021 audit.
Going forward, Healthia is on track to further expand their national network of allied health businesses by deploying at least another $6.2 million toward acquisitions as part of their annual target. In response to their growing profile as an ASX-listed company, Healthia has a strong pipeline of prospective clinics keen to join the network that has previously demonstrated strong organic growth.
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