Key Financial Metrics
Diluted EPS Growth
ASV Client Retention
Annual subscription value growth
CEO’S LETTER TO SHAREHOLDERS
Dear Shareholders, Fiscal 2021 was a tremendous year of growth for FactSet. We continued to evolve—working in different ways and creating more products—to meet the changing needs of our clients. We also found new approaches to adapt, succeed, and grow our business, driven by our investment plan and strong execution across the business. Through it all, our team remained focused on doing what we do best: driving the investment community to see more, think bigger, and do their best work.
For fiscal 2021, I’m proud to report that we delivered record revenues, marking our 41st consecutive year of top-line growth and ending the year with the highest quarter and year of incremental Annual Subscription Value (ASV) in our history. Our outperformance was broad based, as we achieved strong year-overyear growth across all our regions and businesses. We capitalized on client demand for increasingly differentiated data and analytics, delivering innovative solutions and mission-critical data that will power tomorrow’s investment professionals.
Driving sustainable long-term growth requires continued investment back into the business, and we are already seeing returns two years into our multiyear investment plan. Our results were driven by stellar execution from our sales teams throughout the year as we capitalized on the strength of our end markets, particularly in banking, and landed several large deals in our Wealth and Content & Technology Solutions (CTS) businesses. Our targeted investments in content expansion and digital workflow tools are driving increased client retention and expansion and are helping us secure new business. This year we improved our client retention to 91% and further broadened our client base, growing our clients by 10% to over 6,400. We also saw 14% growth in our users, who now number above 160,000, with new users represented across wealth management, banking, and corporate firms.
Transforming Our Digital Platform
As our clients look for new ideas and higher growth, they want the most innovative technology and flexible solutions to achieve their goals. We know through our relentless focus that our clients want smarter, connected data; open, next-generation workflow solutions; and a hyper-personalized experience. These three areas form the core of our investment and growth strategy as we look beyond 2021.
Data connectivity and flexible technology were key to designing products that directly answered our clients’ efficiency needs. For example, this year we launched our Advisor Dashboard, which combines wealth advisors’ books of business with FactSet’s unique content and portfolio analytics to surface personalized and actionable insights that help advisors prioritize and drive client engagement.
We also expanded our content and delivery capabilities across the front, middle, and back office as we continued to grow our cloud and API solutions. These included delivering more data through the cloud and unlocking opportunities in new workflows by unbundling our components to “plug & play” into other third-party systems. Our aim is to shape data and design technology around our clients’ workflows, enabling them to execute their own digital transformations.
We expanded our deep sector data, as well as private markets, alternative markets, and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data. Our progress this year included the value-enhancing acquisitions of Truvalue Labs to expand our ESG offering, BTU Analytics to advance our deep sector content for the energy markets, and Cabot Technologies to better support the portfolio analytical workflows of asset managers and asset owners. We also recently announced the acquisition of Cobalt Software, which will grow our private markets offering, a key area of investment for us.
A Winning Team
Everything we do depends on our people. We have learned a lot this past year, including how we can be more efficient in our go-to-market strategy and maintain the high level of customer service our clients have become accustomed to and expect, while supporting a global employee base through challenging circumstances. Our strong culture of collaboration and inclusiveness and the emphasis we place on the well-being of our people make us a company people want to work for, helping us attract and empower a talented team that creates value for all our stakeholders.
Our business is only as successful as our team and communities, and we continued to invest in initiatives that align with FactSet’s values. On the ESG front, we finalized our sustainability plan; posted GRI, GHG, and SASB metrics to our website; and became a signatory to the UN PRI and UN Global Compact. We also refreshed our diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) strategy and expanded its scope. Our new DE&I strategy consists of three impact areas—Workforce, Marketplace, and Society—and we significantly increased our investment in DE&I, both in staffing and budget. Additionally, we published our workforce demographics in our annual Corporate Responsibility Report. By reporting our workforce demographics, we made a visible step in our DE&I commitment as we aspire to change the composition of our employee demographics by 2023 to better include underrepresented groups. We are proud of this work, but we know that we have more to do. In the coming years, we plan to pursue further our climate and workforce equity efforts, work with our suppliers to promote increased diversity and environmental sustainability across our supply chain, and enhance our strong governance framework.
We continued to invest in our local communities through our Corporate Responsibility Program, united around FactSet’s four Pillars of Service: inspire tomorrow’s engineers, elevate to educate, alleviate food insecurity, and protect our environment. Our employees participated in 263 volunteer events in 20 countries and 32 FactSet locations, with nearly 11,000 FactSet volunteers contributing over 14,000 hours of service. We also launched Pledge for the Planet, a new sustainability initiative that challenges employees to change habits and reduce their environmental impact. More than 1,200 FactSet employees participated in the campaign, resulting in over 12,000 trees planted, and 6.4 million liters of water and 12.7 kilograms of carbon dioxide saved.
High Returns in 2021 and Beyond
Fiscal 2021 marked 25 years of FactSet being a public company and 25 years of strong returns to our shareholders. I’m proud to reflect on our teams’ exceptional performance, the culture of continuous innovation we have fostered, and the significant value to shareholders we have created over the years.
As we look ahead to fiscal 2022, we remain focused on three strategic priorities: delivering next-generation workflow solutions, scaling up our content refinery, and enhancing the client experience. I am confident that our combination of cutting-edge technology, workflow expertise, and comprehensive content, backed by industry-leading service, creates an unrivalled offering for the investment community.
If these last few years have taught us anything, it’s that our people can tackle any challenge and deliver more adaptive and more personalized solutions, positioning us as the partner of choice for all existing and prospective clients. We are entering the new fiscal year with great confidence in our products, our team, our strategy, and our future—and we thank you for your continued commitment to our business.
Chief Executive Officer