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artec technologies

Positioning for growth

Update | Technology | 06 Jun 2018

artec spent the 2016/17 period highly focused on modernising its software platform and, as a consequence, revenues dipped by 41% in FY17. However, in recent months, the company has won three prestigious new contracts with high-profile customers in Germany. These contracts provide a significant endorsement of the new platform, and the artec carried out a 10% capital increase to provide working capital to help deliver these contracts. If management can successfully scale the business, we believe there is significant upside in the shares.

Brady

In-line trading, focused on investing in technology

Update | Technology | 04 Jun 2018

In a brief AGM update, Brady said that trading has been in line. Following a period of significant change, with new people hired and the business having been streamlined, the primary focus has shifted to re-engineering the software. The initial outcome of this was shown with the launch of the group's first FAST START implementation offering in May. We will review our forecasts following tomorrow's capital markets day. If Brady can successfully transition to the cloud, there is a lot to go for as E/CTRM is an attractive growth industry and Brady has a high-quality customer base.

StatPro Group

On target

Update | Technology | 24 May 2018

In a short trading update, StatPro has said that trading is in line with expectations. The group recently signed a major cloud conversion contract with a top 10 global fund administrator. Such deals require significant commitment from the client and, once live, have the potential to be scaled up if the client takes additional licences to extend to its own client base. Given the ongoing busy M&A backdrop in financial software and the significant valuation disparity between StatPro and its US-listed financial software peers, we continue to see strong upside potential in the shares.

DATAGROUP

EBITDA margins lift to 10.6% as acquisitions drive growth

Update | Technology | 23 May 2018

DATAGROUP performed in line with expectations in H1, with revenue growing by 24%, including 1.5% organic growth, or 5–6% when adjusting for discontinued activities from acquisitions. Management conservatively maintained revenue guidance, despite 50% of this already being generated in H1, with ALMATO only contributing for one month in the period. While the rating looks fairly priced at c 10x EBITDA, DATAGROUP offers an excellent track record, high recurring revenues, a clear focus on the large German Mittelstand sector and an increasing number of key differentiators following the acquisitions of ikb Data and ALMATO.

CREALOGIX Group

Forecasts updated for acquisition document

Update | Technology | 17 May 2018

In January, CREALOGIX announced the acquisition of Innofis, a Barcelona-based digital banking business, to expand its core digital banking business into the Middle Eastern markets. No financial information on the transaction was provided at the time and, given the size of the deal, the company was required to produce a prospectus, which has revealed all the relevant information. The value of the deal is c CHF39m, which translates to c 3.6x trailing revenues or 9.3x EBITDA. On our updated forecasts, the deal is 11% earnings enhancing (undiluted basis) in FY19.

SNP Schneider-Neureither & Partner

New $4.5m contract win in North America

Update | Technology | 04 May 2018

While Q1 revenue grew by 46%, the underlying growth was affected by customers deferring projects, particularly around SAP S/4HANA. However, new orders were healthy, and the book-to-bill ratio jumped to 1.3x. This included part of a $4.5m new contract in the US and we expect FY18 to follow a similar path to FY17 with a stronger than normal H2. Meanwhile, SNP remains focused on bedding down acquisitions and the management team has been restructured to reflect the global nature of the business. Also, there has been some streamlining. The outlook remains favourable, particularly on the M&A-driven side of the business, with global M&A at record highs. Given the favourable industry drivers and the potential for margin recovery, the shares look attractive on c 22x our FY19e earnings.

StatPro Group

Anticipating an acceleration in organic growth

Outlook | Technology | 19 Apr 2018

After nearly a decade developing its cloud services platform for the asset management industry, the investment at StatPro is starting to pay off. Fund administrators have begun to extend their use of Revolution and StatPro has beefed up its sales team to drive direct sales. The acquisition of Delta in May 2017 has added depth to StatPro’s front office capabilities, complementing its traditional middle office focus. Organic revenue growth was 2% in FY17 and management is optimistic that growth will accelerate over the next few years. Given the busy M&A backdrop, and the significant valuation disparity between StatPro and its US-listed financial software peers, we continue to see strong upside potential in the shares.

SNP Schneider-Neureither & Partner

Focusing on organic growth

Update | Technology | 18 Apr 2018

SNP has undertaken a series of acquisitions over the last few years that have transformed the scale and the geographical footprint of the business. The goal is to position the group for the anticipated surge in data migrations globally, particularly around SAP S/4HANA, and SNP has already completed more than 30 S/4 projects. In FY18, management is focused on driving organic growth. We have maintained our headline forecasts, although adjusted net debt rises due to higher-than-expected FY17 net debt. Given the favourable industry drivers and the potential for margin recovery, the shares look attractive on c 21x our FY19e earnings.

SCISYS

Space division shines

Update | Technology | 05 Apr 2018

SCISYS posted strong FY17 results, with revenues rising by 25%, including c 9% organic growth and c 5% at constant currencies. The Space division stood out, generating 18% growth in both revenue and contribution. Operating profit (excluding associates) rose by 41% to GBP 4.5m, partly benefiting from hedging arrangements, and the operating margin expanded by 90bp to 7.9%. The outlook is encouraging with the order book 41% ahead at a record GBP 91.3m. We have cautiously maintained our profit forecasts, mainly due to the uncertainties relating to Brexit on the Space division, while our FY19 EPS eases on higher tax rate assumptions. Management’s goal to achieve GBP 60m in revenues and double-digit margins within three to five years looks increasingly conservative, and we believe the stock looks attractive on c 10x our FY19e EPS.

Brady

Restructuring complete, transformation continues

Update | Technology | 27 Mar 2018

Brady has completed the reorganisation that followed the 2016 business review. The focus now is on the re-architecture of its products, and the cash boost from the Recycling disposal will help to that effect. The group spent 33% of sales on R&D in FY17, largely to catch up on client obligations, and continued high investment is anticipated as Brady expands its portfolio of microservices. If Brady can successfully transition to the cloud, there is a lot to go for as E/CTRM is an attractive growth industry and Brady has a high-quality customer base.

CREALOGIX Group

Growth drivers remain in place

Update | Technology | 26 Mar 2018

H1 organic revenue growth was 8% and management expects growth to accelerate in H2. Hence, the group remains on target for 10% organic growth in FY18. In January CREALOGIX announced that it was acquiring Innofis, a Barcelona-based digital banking peer, to expand its core digital banking business into the lucrative Middle Eastern markets. As well as expanding the group’s geographical coverage, the acquisition broadens its product offering and creates an opportunity to grow the employee base in a significantly lower-cost market. We will review our forecasts after a prospectus is published for the Innofis acquisition later this month.

Piteco

Rating is attractive despite 7-8% EPS cuts

Update | Technology | 21 Mar 2018

Piteco traded broadly in line with management objectives, with 30 new contracts signed in FY17, up from 26 in FY16. Nevertheless, revenue and EBITDA came in below our forecasts, as the group lacked any large-size projects during the year, while Juniper Payments suffered on translation from the continued weakness in the dollar. Recurring revenues grew by 5% organically and by 46% including Juniper, which is predominantly recurring revenues, and now represent 65% of the total. We have cut revenues by 5% and EPS by 7-8% in FY18 and FY19 mainly due to the weakness in services and the fall in the dollar. With Juniper trading in line with targets and management expecting the treasury business to return to its growth trend in FY18, we believe the shares are attractively priced on 12x our FY19e earnings.