Neovia Financial ("NEOVIA" or the "Company"), (NEO.L), the independent online payments business, today provides the following update regarding trading during the first half of 2009.
- Group expects to report operating result in line with market forecasts for first half of 2009;
- Quarter-on-quarter increase in active customers with 3% growth in second quarter 2009;
- Quarter-on-quarter improvement in gross margins; and
- Announcement of appointment of new CEO expected shortly.
Overall, the Group continued its promising start to 2009 with the second quarter on track despite the ongoing challenging economic conditions and the Board expects to report an operating result for the first six months of 2009 in line with market expectations. Nevertheless, the challenging market conditions experienced by the Group and other related companies in the first quarter of 2009 have continued into the second quarter, leading to a decrease, as anticipated, in revenues in the first half of 2009 compared to the same period in 2008.
Against this, the Group has seen a quarter-on-quarter increase in active customers, growing by 3% compared to Q1 2009. This is an encouraging trend considering both macro-economic conditions and the fact that the second quarter has traditionally exhibited slower growth than the first quarter. While gross margin in the first half of 2009 will be lower than the same period of 2008, the second quarter of 2009 will be ahead of the first quarter's gross margin as the Group's focus on cost control continues to show results. The Group's results for the first six months of 2009 will reflect a number of non-recurring items which in total are expected to amount to approximately US$7 million.
The Board has identified a new Group Chief Executive Officer and expects to announce his appointment shortly. It is anticipated that he will join the Group in early September 2009.
Dale Johnson, Chairman of NEOVIA, commented: "The Board and management team remain focused on maximising revenues, maintaining control over costs, delivering a capital programme to support the strategy for the future, and preserving cash to deliver value for all shareholders. The Board continues to be optimistic about the outlook for NEOVIA for the full year, but is mindful of the ongoing external market conditions."
The Company expects to publish its half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2009 in mid-September 2009.