Trading Update, Board Changes & Notice of Results
15 July 2019
Aptitude Software Group plc ("Aptitude Software" or the "Group")
Trading Update, Board Changes and Notice of Results
Aptitude Software Group plc, a specialist provider of powerful financial management software to large global businesses, has made good progress in the first half of 2019 and on Wednesday 24 July 2019 expects to report interim results in line with the Board's expectations.
Following the completion of the disposal of Microgen Financial Systems on 28 June 2019 for aggregate cash consideration of £51.4 million, the Group is now totally focused on Aptitude Software's financial management software.
Highlights in the first half include continued new business success with the Aptitude Insurance Calculation Engine ("AICE") and the Aptitude Accounting Hub ("AAH"). AICE is Aptitude Software's latest regulatory-focused application which allows an insurer to perform the calculations and detailed accounting movements required to be compliant with the new insurance accounting standard (IFRS 17) which is effective for periods commencing on 1 January 2022. In addition to the growth provided by the growing suite of regulatory-focused applications, there is an increasing opportunity for AAH to be sold on a standalone basis as finance teams in large global businesses take a leading role in driving their commercial performance and providing the foundation for digital finance transformation.
The above new business progress has led to Aptitude Software's recurring revenue base growing to £27.5 million at 30 June 2019 (31 December 2018: £24.0 million, 30 June 2018: £21.4 million), representing growth since 30 June 2018 of 29%. The growth of Aptitude Software's recurring revenue base is a strategic objective of the Group and is expected to lead to a higher proportion of higher value software revenues in the future as the business continues to scale.
Board and Management Changes
The Board announces that Tom Crawford, Chief Executive Officer of Aptitude Software, will not be seeking re-election at the 2020 Annual General Meeting ("AGM"). Tom has advised the Board that he needs to spend more time with his family whilst his wife continues to recover from a serious health issue. Tom will continue to lead the business for a number of months and, following the 2020 AGM, is expected to continue to contribute to Aptitude Software on a part-time basis. The Board is very grateful to Tom for his pivotal role in the development of the Group, highlighted by the growth in the Aptitude Software business under his leadership from revenue of £14.7 million in 2013 to £52.3 million in 2018.
As part of the Group's succession planning, Jeremy Suddards, currently Aptitude Software's Chief Client Officer for Europe and Asia, was brought into the business in January 2018 having previously held senior roles within Hewlett Packard. Jeremy has made a significant contribution in his time with the Group in all areas of the business including the leadership of the teams responsible for driving the growth with AICE and opening up the Asian market for Aptitude Software. The Board is therefore pleased to announce that Jeremy Suddards will be appointed to the Board on 1 September 2019. Jeremy will transition to the role of Chief Executive Officer in the coming months once the new management structures have been finalised. The experiences acquired in his previous roles and from his time with Aptitude Software support the Board's view that Jeremy has the required talent and skills to lead the business through its next phase of growth. Jeremy will be available to meet key shareholders at the time of Aptitude Software's interim results as part of the Group's results roadshow.
Following the disposal of Microgen Financial Systems, Philip Wood (currently Chief Financial Officer) will be totally focused on the continuing business. As a result of this change Philip is appointed to the position of Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer with immediate effect.
Alex Curran is appointed to lead the North American business as Executive Vice President with responsibility for approximately 50% of Aptitude Software's revenues, including software and professional services. Alex held a number of roles within the Group before she transferred to Aptitude Software's North American operation in 2010. Alex has been instrumental in the growth of Aptitude Software's North American client base with the region's recurring revenue base increasing from £1.6 million in December 2013 to nearly £16 million at 30 June 2019.
As a result of the growth in the North American business, the currently global professional services organisation will be regionalised into International (Asia and Europe) and North America, a structure which is expected to strengthen the focus on the long-term development of clients. This is a natural evolution for Aptitude Software, considered for some time, with the change in Aptitude Software's leadership a natural juncture for the new regional structure to be put into effect.
The above changes build on a series of earlier appointments, including the strategic appointment of Chris Wade as the Chief Product Officer in 2018, and establish a strong management team equipped to continue the excellent growth achieved by the business in recent years.
Notice of Results
Aptitude Software anticipates issuing its Interim Results for the six months ended 30 June 2019 on Wednesday 24 July 2019 at 07.00 hrs. A copy of the Interim Results will be placed on the Group's website: www.aptitudesoftwaregroup.com
Ivan Martin, Chairman 020-3880-7100
Philip Wood, Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer
Caroline Forde / Hilary Buchanan, Alma PR 020-3405-0205
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