Rigorous cost-cutting helped France-based auto-dealing technology firm GL Trade maintain margins in the first half, as turnover increased by a mere 2.3% compared to the same time last year.
Consolidated turnover for the group was €62.5 million during H1 2003, which includes the impact of negative exchange rate movements. At constant exchange rates growth was 8.2 per cent.
Turnover outside France accounted for 72% of the total in the first half of 2003, up from 66 per cent in H1 2002. The rest of Europe accounted for 53% of consolidated turnover in the half. Asia contributed eight per cent and the Americas 10%.
There was a a sharp slowdown in the View–only and e-brokerage businesses at the vendor's GL Multimedi@ subsidiary, mainly in France. GL Trade says lower turnover for France was offset by growth in the rest of Europe, but sales in Asia remained flat due to the economic climate in the region.
Looking ahead, the firm expects the first-half growth trend to be continue in the second half of the year, but claims the slowdown in growth will have a limited impact on margins due to earlier cost reductions across all business units.
The vendor is expecting net margin before goodwill amortisation of between 12%-13% for the full year 2003.