Shares in Winkworth rose 13% yesterday after an upbeat trading statement and the announcement of an increased dividend.
Winkworth said that last year had been uncertain and difficult, but that it had continued to drive the business forward and increase market share.
This was particularly the case in London, where Winkworth ranked second in Sold Subject to Contract market share, up at 4.2% compared with 3.6% the year before.
Winkworth said new franchise openings were held back due to caution over the political backdrop, but nevertheless three new offices were opened and a further three offices were resold.
Total network revenues were slightly up on 2018 figures, while turnover and profits for last year are expected to be “modestly” ahead of market expectations.
Winkworth, which is due to issue its final results for last year on April 2, announced an increased dividend of 2.1p for the fourth quarter of last year, bringing total dividends for the year to 7.8p, up from 7.45p in 2018.
CEO Dominic Agace said: “We are very pleased with the progress made against a difficult market in 2019 and, once again, to be in a position to raise our dividend payment.
“Our professional network and robust model have led to further gains in market share and we look forward to welcoming new operators.
“At the start of 2020, new applications for both sales and lettings have risen sharply, and with borrowing rates remaining low and a more visible political agenda, we anticipate that these will translate into increased activity in coming months.”
Winkworth shares yesterday closed at 147.5p, up from 136p.