CI Financial reports first quarter results: Earnings per share increase 6%; dividend raised 6%

TSX Symbol: CIX

TORONTO, May 7, 2013 /CNW/ - CI Financial Corp. ("CI") today released unaudited financial results for the quarter ended March 31, 2013.

HIGHLIGHTS

Quarter ended
March 31, 2013
($millions except
per share amounts)
Quarter ended
December 31, 2012
($millions except
per share amounts)
%
change
Quarter ended
March 31, 2012
($millions except
per share amounts)
%
change
Assets Under Management 80,471 75,723 6 73,361 10
Average Assets Under Management 78,810 74,323 6 72,262 9
Pre-Tax Operating Earnings Per Share1 0.59 0.58 2 0.56 5
EBITDA Per Share 1 0.64 0.63 2 0.62 3
Net Income 98.5 95.0 4 94.6 4
Earnings Per Share 0.35 0.34 3 0.33 6
SG&A Expenses 39 bps 39 bps 0 40 bps (3)
Dividends Recorded Per Share 0.250 0.240 4 0.235 6
Net Debt2 503.6 526.5 (4) 646.7 (22)
Gross Sales 3,804 3,513 8 2,641 44
Net Sales 1,147 724 58 160 615

      1 Pre-Tax Operating Earnings and EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) are not standardized earnings
measures prescribed by IFRS; however, management believes that most of its shareholders, creditors, other stakeholders and
investment analysts prefer to include the use of these performance measures in analyzing CI's results. CI defines pre-tax operating
earnings as income before income taxes less redemption fee revenue, non-recurring items, performance fees and investment gains,
plus amortization of deferred sales commissions (DSC) and fund contracts. CI's method of calculating these measures may not be
comparable to similar measures presented by other companies.
      2 Net of cash and marketable securities not required for regulatory working capital.

For the quarter ended March 31, 2013, average assets under management reached a record high of $78.8 billion, an increase of 9% from the same quarter of the previous year and an increase of 6% from the prior quarter. CI also had its highest level of first quarter gross sales since 2000 and the highest level of first quarter net sales since 2006. Gross sales of funds were $3.8 billion during the quarter, an increase of 44% year over year, while net sales increased 615% to $1.1 billion.

At March 31, 2013, CI also reached a record level of assets under management for a quarter-end at $80.5 billion, up 10% from $73.4 billion at March 31, 2012. In comparison, the S&P/TSX Composite and the DEX Universe Bond indexes increased 6% and 5%, respectively, over the same period.

For the first quarter of 2013, CI reported earnings per share of $0.35, up 6% from $0.33 per share in the first quarter of 2012 and up 3% from $0.34 per share in the last quarter of 2012. In addition, CI reported EBITDA per share for the first quarter of 2013 of $0.64, a 3% increase from the first quarter of 2012 and a 2% increase from the prior quarter. Pre-tax operating earnings per share, which include adjustments for non-recurring items, were up 5% from the first quarter of 2012 and up 2% from the prior quarter.

CI successfully controlled discretionary spending, keeping expenses in line with the growth in assets under management. Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses as a percentage of average assets under management were 0.39% in the first quarter of 2013, down slightly from 0.40% in the first quarter of the prior year.

CI generated $98.6 million in free cash flow during the quarter ended March 31, 2013 compared to $98.5 million in the first quarter of 2012. CI's cash flow facilitated a reduction in net debt by $22.9 million and the payment of $69.3 million in dividends. As at April 30, 2013, CI had 283,323,896 shares outstanding.

"It has been a great start to 2013 for CI Financial," said Stephen A. MacPhail, CI President and Chief Executive Officer. "Our sales have been the best since 2000, with retail net sales so far this year totalling $1.6 billion, and our assets under management have reached $82 billion, a record for CI. The performance of our fund managers has been exemplary and while we have invested heavily in the staff and service elements of our business as well as advertising the CI Financial and Assante brands, we were able to reduce our SG&A spending in basis points from the prior year."

CI's assets under management at May 6, 2013 of $82 billion were up 4% from the average of $78.8 billion for the first quarter of 2013. The robust performance led the Board of Directors to increase CI's monthly dividend by $0.005 per share to $0.09 per share payable on each of June 14, July 15 and August 15, 2013 to shareholders of record on May 31, June 30 and July 31, 2013, respectively. The monthly dividend represents a yield of 3.7% on CI's closing share price of $29.23 on May 6, 2013.

For detailed financial statements for the quarter ended March 31, 2013, including Management's Discussion and Analysis, please refer to CI's website at www.cifinancial.com under Reports, or contact investorrelations@ci.com.

Analysts' Conference Call
CI will hold a conference call with analysts today at 4 p.m. Eastern time. Speaking on the call will be Mr. MacPhail and Douglas Jamieson, Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer. The conference call and a slide presentation will be accessible through a webcast at www.ci.com/q1. Alternatively, investors may listen to the discussion by dialling 1-866-696-5910 or (416) 340-2217 (passcode: 1047993).

The call will be available for playback later in the day until May 21, 2013 at (905) 694-9451 or 1-800-408-3053 (passcode: 9604919). The webcast will be archived at www.ci.com/q1.

CI Financial Corp. (TSX: CIX) is an independent, Canadian-owned wealth management company. CI offers a broad range of investment products and services, including an industry-leading selection of investment funds, and is on the Web at www.cifinancial.com.

This press release contains forward-looking statements with respect to CI and its products and services, including its business operations and strategy and financial performance and condition. Although management believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, such statements involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations include, among other things, general economic and market factors, including interest rates, business competition, changes in government regulations or in tax laws, and other factors discussed in materials filed with applicable securities regulatory authorities from time to time.

SOURCE: CI Financial Corp.

For further information:

Stephen A. MacPhail
President and Chief Executive Officer
CI Financial Corp.
(416) 364-1145


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