H&R Block to Discontinue EXPRESSTAX Brand

Latest Move Signals Another Step to Focus Efforts on Client Growth and Brand Expertise

KANSAS CITY, MO, Sep 29, 2011 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- H&R Block (NYSE: HRB) announced today it will discontinue service under its EXPRESSTAX brand. Currently, there are 269 EXPRESSTAX franchise offices, which collectively prepared nearly 100,000 tax returns and generated $3 million of royalty fees to H&R Block in fiscal 2011. As H&R Block seeks to continue growth in its franchise base and clientele, it will invite many EXPRESSTAX franchisees to join the H&R Block brand.

″This move is consistent with where we want to focus our future investments and resources,″ said Bill Cobb, H&R Block CEO. ″After a thorough review of the EXPRESSTAX business model and its recent performance, we concluded it was no longer a growth driver and therefore not a good fit for our company.″

In connection with this announcement, H&R Block will record a pretax charge of approximately $0.02 to $0.03 per share in the fiscal second quarter ending October 31, 2011.

H&R Block purchased EXPRESSTAX in 2006. The EXPRESSTAX brand attracted mostly early-season filers who also sought quick-paying financial products. H&R Block offered EXPRESSTAX franchises in locations where it had competitive and geographic advantages.

H&R Block is coming off one of its strongest tax seasons in recent years. In Tax Season 2011, H&R Block grew new clients by nearly 19 percent, saw client retention improve by nearly 4 percent, and gained market share in both its retail and digital tax preparation channels.

Forward-Looking Statements

This announcement may contain forward-looking statements, which are any statements that are not historical facts. These forward-looking statements, as well as the Company's guidance, are based upon the Company's current expectations and there can be no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Because forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and speak only as of the date on which they are made, the Company's actual results could differ materially from these statements. These risks and uncertainties relate to, among other things, uncertainties regarding the Company's ability to attract and retain clients; meet its prepared returns targets; uncertainties and potential contingent liabilities arising from our former mortgage loan origination and servicing business; uncertainties in the residential mortgage market and its impact on loan loss provisions; uncertainties pertaining to the commercial debt market; competitive factors; the Company's effective income tax rate; litigation defense expenses and costs of judgments or settlements; uncertainties regarding the level of share repurchases; and changes in market, economic, political or regulatory conditions. Information concerning these risks and uncertainties is contained in Item 1A of the Company's 2011 annual report on Form 10-K and in other filings by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company does not undertake any duty to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

About H&R Block

H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB) has prepared more than 575 million tax returns worldwide since 1955, making it the country's largest tax services provider. In fiscal 2011, H&R Block had annual revenues of $3.8 billion and prepared more than 24.5 million tax returns worldwide, including Canada and Australia. Tax return preparation services are provided in company-owned and franchise retail tax offices by more than 100,000 professional tax preparers, and through H&R Block At Home(TM) digital products. The H&R Block Bank provides affordable banking products and services, and McGladrey is a top provider of tax, accounting and wealth management services to mid-sized businesses. For more information, visit the H&R Block Online Press Center.

For Further Information:

Media:
Gene King
816-854-4287
Email Contact

Investors:
Derek Drysdale
816-854-4513
Email Contact

SOURCE: H & R Block

 

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