Bradford-based doorstep lender Provident Financial swings to profit as it fights hostile takeover attempt

Provident Financial has swung to a profit as the doorstep lender tries to fend off takeover advances from smaller rival Non-Standard Finance.

Malcolm Le May

The Bradford-based firm made a pre-tax profit of £90.7m in 2018 compared with a £147.9m loss the year earlier.

Revenue, however, slipped to £1.12bn from £1.2bn.

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Provident chief executive Malcolm Le May said: “Today’s results are testament to the immense progress that the group has made over the past 18 months, having delivered adjusted profit before tax growth of 82.3 per cent in 2018.

“We have delivered against each of the objectives we set ourselves for 2018 and have strengthened our relationship with our customers, regulators and other stakeholders.

“We aim to build on the considerable momentum within the group in 2019 and beyond, with a focus on delivering attractive and sustainable returns to our shareholders as we execute on our strategy.

“We continue to believe that the offer made by NSF (Non-Standard Finance) is not in the interests of all shareholders.”