Global hiring boom boosts recruiter SThree

FILE PHOTO: SThree's logo is pictured on a smartphone in this illustration taken, December 4, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

(Reuters) -Recruiter SThree posted record annual profits on Monday and forecast double-digit growth this financial year, driven by a global hiring boom as firms rush to fill vacancies and invest in the recovery from the pandemic.

Shares in the British company, which helps hire staff in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) sectors across 15 countries, were up 9% at 0900 GMT.

"Whether it is engineers building green infrastructure, developers aiding digital transformation or the scientists helping to develop the next life-changing drug, we are proud to have placed more than 22,000 skilled people (in fiscal 2021)," SThree's interim Chief Executive Timo Lehne said.

Recruiters, including peers Hays, PageGroup and Robert Walters, have in the past year benefited from tight labour markets and a raging war for talent as economies recover, employees move jobs and employers seek new ways of flexible working.

SThree said its largest technology sector was driven by rising demand for infrastructure and software development roles from private and public sectors across its major markets, and clients pouring money into technology transformation.

British education group Pearson announced plans on Monday to expand its offering to businesses looking to train and retain workers amid tight labour markets and rapid technological innovation.

Meanwhile, French insurance firm Descartes Underwriting, which raised $120 million from investors in early stage fundraising, said it would use part of the capital to hire new staff, particularly software engineers.

SThree reported a 99% rise in pretax profit to 60 million pounds ($80.5 million) for the 12 months ended Nov. 30. That was also up 7% from 2019 levels.

The company, which also saw a 15% rise in annual net fees, expects net fees and profits to rise by a double-digit percentage this financial year.

($1 = 0.7450 pounds)

(Reporting by Amna Karimi and Yadarisa Shabong in BengaluruEditing by Shailesh Kuber and Mark Potter)

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