UK-based retail banking solutions provider AIT Group is reporting a 31% increase in profits to £2 million for the six months to end-September 2000, with turnover up 46% to £14.2 million in the same period.
Investment in R&D of £2.5 million (1999: £0.8 million) and a 50% increase in sales and marketing cost has decreased operating margins from 15.5% in 1999 to 13.8% in 2000, the Group reports. Licence fee revenue for the period is ahead 98% to £2.8 million (1999: £1.4 million) and, including related maintenance, now represents 26% of turnover (1999: 22%). Basic earnings per share increased 32% to 6.81p (1999: 5.17p).
AIT's change of focus in the past year, from call centre to multi-channel e-CRM is reflected in the results, with the latter representing 45% of revenue for the six months, up from 25% in the comparative period. The revenue uplift comes from projects involving electronic channels including: Marks & Spencer Financial Services, Alliance and Leicester, Bradford & Bingley, GE Capital and The Woolwich.
Carl Rigby, chairman and chief executive, comments: "The market is buoyant throughout the financial services sector, driven by the increasing focus on maximising customer relationships through effective e-CRM systems. Our order book remains strong, our sales pipeline is healthy and we expect to sign contracts with some major household names in the near future."
The Board also announced that the founder of the company, Richard Hicks, will be stepping down as non-executive chairman but will remain on the Board as a non-executive Director. CEO Rigby has taken over the executive chairmanship and Tom Crawford has been appointed chief operating officer while continuing as chief financial officer.