At constant scope and exchange rates, turnover grew by 2.4% in 2003.
Including this currency effect, and despite the impact of various contract renegotiations at the start of the year caused by the weak operating environment, turnover was stable throughout the year, and there was a slight resumption of sequential growth in the fourth quarter.
The full-year turnover figure includes â¬2.8m resulting from the purchase of three MSTS units (part of the Misys group) on 3 November 2003, in London, Tokyo and Hong Kong.
- â¬1.5m of this turnover relates to trading/display solutions, which forms part of GL TRADEâs core business
- â¬1.3m relates to back office solutions (settlement and delivery of securities), which represents a diversification complementary to GL TRADEâs existing activities. GL MARKET SETTLEMENT has now been added to GL TRADEâs STP chain, linking front, middle and back office solutions.
Turnover by geographical zone
In 2003, 73% of turnover came from outside France, as opposed to 69% in 2002.
French turnover came in down 13% at â¬35m, due in particular to brokerage closures and a downturn in the distribution business.
Europe excluding France accounted for 53% of turnover in 2003. The acquisition of MSTS gave a major boost to GL TRADEâs position in London, and UK turnover came in up 1.1% at â¬30m despite sterling falling by more than 9% against the euro. GL TRADE now has 190 staff in London, and the UK is its largest market. Turnover in Europe excl-France and excl-UK rose by 17%.
The Americas generated 10% of GL TRADEâs turnover in 2003, the same as in 2002. Despite this apparent stability, the US subsidiaryâs turnover rose by 22% in dollar terms, although this growth was cancelled out in GL TRADEâs consolidated accounts by the 16% slide in the dollar over the same period.
GL TRADE plans to take advantage of the weak dollar by actively seeking acquisitions in the USA.
Asia accounted for around 9% of turnover. Organic turnover growth (10%) was held back by weak operating conditions, and growth was offset in GL TRADEâs consolidated accounts by the fall in the Hong Kong dollar and Japanese yen against the euro (-16% and -10% respectively).
The economic background remained gloomy in 2003. As a result, GL TRADE paid particularly close attention to costs, and continued to enhance productivity in all its operating units. As previously announced, the company is forecasting net margin before goodwill amortisation of 12-13%.
GL TRADE will publish and comment on its 2003 financial statements after its 4 March 2004 board meeting. A (SFAF) analystsâ meeting is scheduled for 5 March 2004.