Continued improvement in six-month bottom-line performance for Datalex

TRAVEL software group Datalex has reported a continued improvement in bottom-line performance for the first six months of the year to the end of June.

This was on the back of better turnover and a reduced cost base.

If goodwill of €400,000 and other charges above the line in the profit and loss account are excluded, the group technically made a profit of $81,000.

That figure compares favourably with a trading loss of $4.4m for the first half of 2003. When goodwill etc is charged to the accounts, the loss on ordinary activities before taxation was cut from $5.6m in the first half of 2003 to $0.4m in the same period in 2004.

This improved performance reduced the adjusted loss per share from 8 cents to 1 cent for the first six months of 2004.

Sales increased by 6% to $15.5m from $14.6m the same time last year.

That reflected incomes from continuing contracts as well as new contracts to companies such as Malaysia Airlines and American Express UK. Datalex said the industry continued to suffer from long lead times between contract negotiations and revenue generation.

This lower consulting income is likely to hold back sales growth in the second half of the year, said the company.

Datalex’s software customers include Aer Lingus, American Express, Amtrak, Best Western International, Delta Airlines, Ebookers, Thomas Cook, Trailfinders and Singapore Airlines.

Analysts said in line with other software pioneers Datalex has had to graft to gain access to vital airline markets, where on line booking is a major factor in the business.

In March, the travel software group signed a new deal with Japan’s leading travel agency group, JTB Corporation.

It was the first of its kind to be awarded by JTB to a foreign technology company, and gives Datalex another foothold in the burgeoning Asia-Pacific market, which it aims to fully explore in the years ahead.

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