GFT Group continues dynamic growth in first quarter of 2015 – significant increase in revenue and earnings

15 May 2015

  • Consolidated revenue up 42 percent to EUR 110.28 million
  • Earnings (EBITDA) raised by 61 percent to EUR 9.80 million
  • GFT division generates revenue growth of 58 percent

The GFT Group continued its positive development of the financial year 2014 in the first quarter of 2015 and generated further strong growth in revenue and earnings. The implementation of compliance requirements and the trend towards digitising business processes in the banking industry were the main drivers in the field of IT consulting and services.

In the first three months of 2015, the GFT Group’s revenue rose by 42 percent to EUR 110.28 million (prev. year: EUR 77.72 million). This dynamic revenue trend resulted mainly from strong organic growth in the GFT division, as well as from the acquisition of the UK-based company Rule Financial Ltd. in June 2014. Due to this acquisition, revenue in the UK and USA more than doubled to EUR 43.01 million (prev. year: EUR 20.63 million) and EUR 9.01 million (prev. year: EUR 3.94 million), respectively. The main growth driver in both countries was the demand for compliance solutions in the investment banking sector. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) improved by 61 percent to EUR 9.80 million in the first quarter (prev. year: EUR 6.08 million). There was also a sharp rise in pre-tax earnings (EBT) of 47 percent to EUR 7.06 million (prev. year: EUR 4.81 million). Earnings after taxes (EAT) amounted to EUR 4.84 million (prev. year: EUR 3.25 million) and raised earnings per share to EUR 0.18 (prev. year: EUR 0.12).

Dedicated to delivering IT services for the finance sector, the GFT division raised revenue by 58 percent to EUR 88.51 million in the first quarter (prev. year: EUR 55.99 million). Adjusted for the revenue contribution of Rule Financial (integrated into this division) of EUR 19.70 million (prev. year: EUR 0.00 million), GFT generated organic growth of 23 percent. The GFT segment’s contribution to earnings (EBT) improved by 46 percent to EUR 7.43 million (prev. year: EUR 5.09 million), representing an operating margin of 8.4 percent (prev. year: 9.1 percent).

The emagine division specialises in the staffing of technology projects and generated revenue of EUR 21.76 million in the reporting period – slightly up on the prior-year figure of EUR 21.72 million. EBT in this segment more than doubled to EUR 0.17 million (prev. year: EUR 0.07 million). The operating margin rose to 0.8 percent (prev. year: 0.3 percent).
“Our clients have to cope with rising compliance requirements while at the same time fending off new, innovative market players who are increasingly occupying areas of their value chain,” says Ulrich Dietz, CEO of GFT Technologies AG. “In our ‘Digital Banking Lab’ at the CeBIT fair, our solutions for the bank of the future were very warmly received. We were able to clearly demonstrate how banks can make their business models more customer-centred by further digitising their processes.”

Headcount grows to around 3,400

As of 31 March 2015, the GFT Group had 3,395 full-time employees – representing growth of 51 percent year on year (31 March 2014: 2,254). The increase is mainly attributable to the acquisition of Rule Financial (plus 662) as well as to new staff hired to handle the high level of capacity utilisation, especially at the nearshore development centres in Spain (plus 254 to 1,398) and Brazil (plus 111 to 321).

Additional key data

As of 31 March 2015, cash, cash equivalents and securities amounted to EUR 32.60 million and were thus EUR 5.65 million below the year-end figure (31 December 2014: EUR 38.25 million). The cash outflow resulted mainly from an increase in trade receivables. Equity as of 31 March 2015 was up EUR 13.86 million compared to the last balance sheet date (31 December 2014: EUR 100.41 million). Total assets rose by EUR 25.37 million to EUR 327.02 million as of 31 March 2015 (31 December 2014: EUR 301.65 million). As a result of the increase in the balance sheet total and change in equity as of 31 March 2015, the equity ratio rose by 2 percentage points to 35 percent (31 December 2014: 33 percent).

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