Nielsen Holdings NV Earnings Call Nuggets: Free Cash Flow and Constant Currency Revenue Growth

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Nielsen Holdings NV (NYSE:NLSN) recently reported its fourth quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

Free Cash Flow

Andrew Steinerman – JPMorgan: Brian, you mentioned about accelerated free cash flow conversion. Could you go over what’s driving that, and if you could give us a sense of headwinds and tailwinds on free cash flow as we look at 2013?

Brian West – CFO: A big part of it is all the work we’ve done about reducing the interest burden on the Company. You saw it in multiple ways in 2012. Taking out those high coupon notes was a big deal. So, that’s a big driver of it. In terms of our headwinds into 2013 on cash flow, this business model holds up real well, and we’ll have nice conversion and we think that we’ve got a reasonable outlook in terms of what the capital market to look like in the corresponding interest environment. So, we feel real good about no real big things out there that would impact us. And as Dave mentioned, we’ve got a business operating plan that’s set for a planning environment that’s not expecting big acceleration. So, we feel pretty comfortable about where we’re at.

Andrew Steinerman – JPMorgan: How about working capital comment as it refers to free cash flow in 2013?

Brian West – CFO: First, working capital is really in line with volume, if you really look at it over a longer period of time, and that will never change. Our real working capital is all about collections and receivables. We don’t have inventory. There’s not big things that stuck up cash on that front of the balance sheet, which again means that we have the high cash flow conversion due to the business model. So, we feel good that anything would be more along volume impact, which we think is a good thing, because that means revenue is growing.

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