First Derivatives sales surge 56% as profits hit £3.3m

FIRST Derivatives, which provides software and other services to the international capital markets, has reported a strong first half, with sales up by more than 56%.

In the period to end August 2010 turnover rose to £17.7m (€20.25m), up from £11.4m (€13m) in the corresponding period of the previous year.

Pre-tax profit was £3.3m (€3.78m), against £3.1m, up 5.9%. Earnings per share (EPS) for the period were 15.6p, an increase of 1.3%.

Due to good operating cash flows combined with retained cash of £4.2m the board has declared an interim dividend 2.9p per share (2009: 2.75p).

Dividends will be paid on December 8 to shareholders on the register on November 12.

Over the period software sales rose 158%, resulting in a change in the revenue mix. Software now accounts for 38% of total revenue against 23% previously.

The company, whose chief executive, Brian Conlon, was named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year last week, said growth was driven by a combination of new and existing products.

At this stage the group has more than 40 software customers who will soon benefit from a Delta product suite due to be released.

Continuing developments within the company means it can now offer customers an expanding product range from data centres in Belfast, Dublin, Chicago, New Jersey and Slough.

This model allows easier access to new and existing clients and will facilitate further growth.

In the past two years First Derivatives has been in a period of significant transition involving in investment and R&D to offer software products as well as services to its clients. This has been done without hurting profits or slowing growth.

“We plan to continue investing, not only in building a global sales team and recruiting R&D staff, but also in the physical infrastructure required to deliver a Software as a Service capability,” said David Anderson, group chairman.

“During the period under review the group successfully launched our Delta eFX platform and we now have seven clients trading and billions of dollars of transactions per day are being processed through our data centres.”

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