STRONG FIRST QUARTER OF 2014 FOR GFT GROUP
- Consolidated revenue up 40 percent to EUR 77.72 million
- GFT division increases revenue by 73 percent
- Pre-tax earnings more than tripled to EUR 4.81 million
The GFT Group continued its positive development of the second half of 2013 in the first quarter of 2014. The substantial year-on-year increase in revenue of 40 percent to EUR 77.72 million (prev. year: EUR 55.51 million) resulted from strong organic growth with solutions for the finance sector in the GFT division, as well as from the acquisition in mid 2013 of the Italian consultancy Sempla. Revenue generated outside Germany grew by 56 percent to EUR 58.00 million, resulting in an increase in its share of consolidated revenue to 75 percent (prev. year: 67 percent). As a result of this healthy revenue development and high capacity utilisation in the GFT division, pre-tax earnings (EBT) more than tripled year on year to EUR 4.81 million (prev. year: EUR 1.55 million). Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased to EUR 6.08 million (prev. year: EUR 1.86 million).
Dedicated to delivering IT solutions for the finance sector, the GFT division posted revenue growth of 73 percent to EUR 55.99 million in the first quarter (prev. year: EUR 32.40 million). Adjusted for revenue of EUR 10.78 million generated by Sempla (GFT Italia as of January 2014; consolidated and integrated into this division since the second half of 2013), GFT posted revenue growth of 40 percent. This strong organic growth resulted mainly from the ongoing progress in business with investment banks, as well as from solutions in the field of banking compliance. GFT enjoyed particularly strong revenue growth in the UK and US markets. The GFT division’s share of consolidated revenue rose to 72 percent (prev. year: 58 percent).
In the first three months of 2014, the pre-tax earnings contribution (EBT) of the GFT segment rose by 154 percent to EUR 6.04 million (prev. year: EUR 2.38 million), corresponding to an increase in the operating margin to 10.8 percent (prev. year: 7.4 percent). Compared to revenue, this disproportionately strong rise in earnings resulted mainly from increased capacity utilisation and economies of scale.
With its services for the staffing of technology projects, the emagine division posted a fall in revenue of 6 percent to EUR 21.72 million (prev. year: EUR 23.09 million). The division’s share of total Group revenue fell to 28 percent during the reporting period (prev. year: 42 percent). Despite lower revenues, an improved operating margin of 1.0 percent (prev. year: 0.4 percent) resulted in an increase in earnings of EUR 0.13 million to EUR 0.23 million (prev. year: EUR 0.10 million).
All pre-tax earnings more than tripled
All pre-tax earnings of the GFT Group tripled in the first quarter. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose by 227 percent to EUR 6.08 million (prev. year: EUR 1.86 million). GFT Italia – burdened for the first time by standard corporate expense allocations – contributed EUR 0.35 million to EBITDA. Earnings before taxes (EBT) grew by 211 percent to EUR 4.81 million (prev. year: EUR 1.55 million). At 6.2 percent, the operating margin before taxes was up 3.4 percentage points compared to the previous year (2.8 percent). Earnings after taxes (net income for the period) rose by 184 percent to EUR 3.25 million (prev. year: EUR 1.14 million), corresponding to earnings per share of EUR 0.12 (prev. year: EUR 0.04). The calculated tax ratioamounted to 33 percent, compared to 26 percent in the previous year.
“We are delighted to have continued our course of dynamic growth. Due to the high level of utilisation at our development centres in Spain and Brazil, we also increased headcount further at these facilities. We are confident that we can reach our revenue and earnings targets for the full financial year,” says Ulrich Dietz, CEO of GFT Technologies AG.
Christopher Ortiz, managing director of GFT UK commented: “UK’s significant contribution to GFT’s success is based on our commitment to bringing technical know-how and business knowledge to bear on the challenges faced by the investment banks in the City. Big data, business process automation, business intelligence and regulatory compliance continue to be some of the key drivers that we are addressing for our clients in London.”
Headcount grows by 55 percent to 2,254
As of 31 March 2014, the total number of full-time employees of the GFT Group rose by 55 percent to 2,254 (31 March 2013: 1,457). Due to the improvement in business and high level of capacity utilisation, there was a strong increase in headcount at the Group’s development centres in Spain and Brazil. The number of staff employed in Spain, for example, rose by 23 percent year on year to 1,144 (prev. year: 932) and in Brazil by 63 percent to 210 (prev. year: 129).
Additional key data
As of 31 March 2014, the GFT Group had cash and cash equivalents of EUR 45.82 million (31 December 2013: EUR 48.63 million). Equity capital amounted to EUR 90.48 million on 31 March 2014 and was thus EUR 3.33 million above the corresponding figure on the balance sheet date of 31 December 2013 (EUR 87.15 million).
Detailed financial figures are available in the Investor Relations section of the GFT website at http://www.gft.com/ir.
Key figures (deviations possible due to rounding differences)
IFRS figures in EUR million
|Earnings before taxes (EBT)||4.81||1.55|
|Net income for the period||3.25||1.14|
|Earnings/share acc. to IAS 33 in EUR||0.12||0.04|
|Equity ratio in percent||43||60|
|Employees (full-time) as of 31 March||2,254||1,457|