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Westwood Holdings Group, Inc. Reports Second Quarter 2017 Results

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DALLAS, July 26, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Westwood Holdings Group, Inc. (NYSE:WHG) today reported second quarter 2017 revenues of $33.8 million compared to $31.0 million in the second quarter of 2016 and $32.6 million in the first quarter of 2017, primarily related to higher average assets under management ("AUM") due to market appreciation and performance-based fees of $1.0 million earned in the second quarter of 2017.

AUM as of June 30, 2017 totaled $22.6 billion, up from $21.0 billion and $22.1 billion at June 30, 2016 and March 31, 2017, respectively. Assets under advisement ("AUA") totaled $1.0 billion compared to $322 million and $1.1 billion at June 30, 2016 and March 31, 2017, respectively.

Compared to the second quarter of 2016, net income increased from $5.7 million to $6.9 million. The increase primarily related to higher revenues as noted above. Diluted earnings per share was $0.83 in the second quarter of 2017 compared to $0.69 in the second quarter of 2016. Non-GAAP Economic Earnings for the quarter increased from $10.4 million, or $1.27 per share, in 2016's second quarter, to $11.7 million, or $1.41 per share, in the second quarter of 2017.

Second quarter net income totaled $6.9 million compared with $6.1 million in the first quarter of 2017. The increase was driven primarily by higher revenues as noted above, coupled with lower employee compensation costs as a result of seasonal incremental payroll tax and benefit plan matching expenses on cash bonuses paid during the first quarter. Diluted earnings per share of $0.83 compared to $0.73 for the first quarter of 2017. Non-GAAP Economic Earnings for the quarter of $11.7 million, or $1.41 per share, compared to $10.6 million, or $1.28 per share, in the immediately preceding quarter.

Highlights from the second quarter 2017 include:

  • AUM in our global and emerging markets strategies reached a record $5.1 Billion.
  • Revenues of $33.8 million increased $2.8 million from the second quarter of 2016 and $1.2 million from the first quarter of 2017.
  • All U.S. value strategies provided strong absolute and relative returns, beating their respective benchmarks for the quarter.

Brian Casey, Westwood's President & CEO, commented, "We are pleased that all our U.S. value strategies beat their benchmarks for the quarter with strong absolute and relative returns, continuing the positive momentum since the end of last year. As announced in early July, we were pleased to be appointed the sole sub-investment manager of Aviva Investors' two convertibles fund offerings, as our relationship with Aviva's Global Convertibles Fund transitioned from advisory to discretionary manager."

Westwood's Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.62 per common share, payable on October 2, 2017 to stockholders of record on September 8, 2017.  At quarter-end, Westwood had $88.8 million in cash and investments, stockholders' equity of $151.3 million, and no debt.

Economic Earnings and Economic Earnings per Share ("Economic EPS") are non-GAAP performance measures and are explained and reconciled with the most comparable GAAP numbers in the attached tables.

Westwood will host a conference call to discuss second quarter 2017 results and other business matters at 4:30 p.m. Eastern time today.  To join the conference call, dial 877-303-6235 (domestic and Canada) or 631-291-4837 (international).  The conference call can also be accessed via our Investor Relations page at westwoodgroup.com and will be available for replay through August 2, 2017 by dialing 855-859-2056 (domestic and Canada) or 404-537-3406 (international) and then entering the passcode 45238707.

About Westwood

Westwood Holdings Group, Inc. provides investment management services to institutional investors, private wealth clients and financial intermediaries. With $22.6 billion in assets under management (as of June 30, 2017), our firm offers a range of investment strategies including U.S. equities, Master Limited Partnerships (MLPs), Multi-Asset, Global and Emerging Markets equities, and Global Convertible securities portfolios. Access to our strategies is available through separate accounts, commingled funds, the Westwood Funds® family of mutual funds, UCITS funds, and other pooled vehicles. Westwood benefits from significant, broad-based employee ownership and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "WHG." Based in Dallas, Texas, Westwood also maintains offices in Toronto, Boston, Omaha, and Houston.

For more information on Westwood, please visit www.westwoodgroup.com.

For more information on the Westwood Funds®, please visit www.westwoodfunds.com.

Forward-looking Statements

Statements in this press release that are not purely historical facts, including, without limitation, statements about our expected future financial position, results of operations or cash flows, as well as other statements including without limitation, words such as "anticipate," "forecast," "believe," "plan," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "should," "could," "goal," "may," "target," "designed," "on track," "comfortable with," "optimistic" and other similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Actual results and the timing of some events could differ materially from those projected in or contemplated by the forward-looking statements due to a number of factors, including, without limitation: the composition and market value of our assets under management; regulations adversely affecting the financial services industry; competition in the investment management industry; our assets under management includes investments in foreign companies; our ability to develop and market new investment strategies successfully; our relationships with current and potential customers; our ability to retain qualified personnel; our ability to maintain effective cyber security; our ability to maintain effective information systems; our ability to pursue and properly integrate acquired businesses; litigation risks; our ability to properly address conflicts of interest; our ability to maintain adequate insurance coverage; our ability to maintain an effective system of internal controls; our ability to maintain our fee structure in light of competitive fee pressures; our relationships with investment consulting firms; the significant concentration of our revenues in a small number of customers; and the other risks detailed from time to time in Westwood's Securities and Exchange Commission filings, including, but not limited to, its annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016 and its quarterly reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2017 and June 30, 2017. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Except as required by law, Westwood is not obligated to publicly release any revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this press release or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

(WHG-G)



WESTWOOD HOLDINGS GROUP, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME
(in thousands, except per share and share amounts)
(unaudited)
 
  Three Months Ended
  June 30,
 2017
  March 31,
 2017
  June 30,
 2016
REVENUES:          
Advisory fees:          
      Asset-based $ 24,496     $ 23,789     $ 22,666  
      Performance-based 1,031     386     409  
Trust fees 7,917     7,795     7,643  
Other, net 312     653     305  
Total revenues 33,756     32,623     31,023  
           
EXPENSES:          
Employee compensation and benefits $ 15,557     $ 17,717     $ 15,108  
Sales and marketing 513     477     687  
Westwood mutual funds 909     863     831  
Information technology 1,883     1,756     2,201  
Professional services 1,318     1,496     1,158  
General and administrative 2,993     2,544     2,526  
Total expenses 23,173     24,853     22,511  
Income before income taxes 10,583     7,770     8,512  
Provision for income taxes(1) 3,687     1,706     2,851  
Net income $ 6,896     $ 6,064     $ 5,661  
Other comprehensive income:          
   Foreign currency translation adjustments           934     207     157  
Total comprehensive income $ 7,830     $ 6,271     $ 5,818  
           
Earnings per share:          
Basic $ 0.84     $ 0.75     $ 0.71  
Diluted $ 0.83     $ 0.73     $ 0.69  
           
Weighted average shares outstanding:          
  Basic      8,167,277          8,065,825          8,000,214  
  Diluted   8,316,508       8,311,382       8,172,923  
           
Economic Earnings $ 11,710     $ 10,607     $ 10,387  
Economic EPS $ 1.41     $ 1.28     $ 1.27  
           
Dividends declared per share $ 0.62     $ 0.62     $ 0.57  

_____________________
(1)   Our as adjusted tax rate for the first quarter of 2017 of 22.0% included a $1.0 million discrete tax benefit associated with the adoption of new accounting guidance related to stock–based compensation awards that vested during the first quarter of 2017.



WESTWOOD HOLDINGS GROUP, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME
(in thousands, except per share and share amounts)
(unaudited)
 
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