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Final Results

Dillistone Group Plc
("Dillistone", the "Company" or the "Group")
Final Results

 

Dillistone Group Plc, the AIM quoted supplier of recruitment software for the international recruitment industry through its Dillistone Systems, Voyager Software and GatedTalent divisions, is pleased to announce its audited final results for the 12 months ended 31 December 2018.

Highlights for the year:
• Recurring revenues1 represent 82% (restated 2017: 82%) of Group revenue
• Adjusted operating profit2 of £0.055m (restated 2017: £0.459m) before acquisition intangible writes offs, reflecting the loss of the major contract announced in 2017 which reduced revenues by £0.625m compared to 2017 in a ten-month period
• Loss for the year of £0.260m (restated 2017: profit £0.057m)
• Adjusted basic EPS3 of 0.61p (2017: 3.73p)
• The Group continued to generate cash from operating activities resulting in cash at 31 December 2018 of £0.725m (2017: £1.390m) with borrowings of £0.404m (2017: £0.391m).

[2017 numbers have been restated for the introduction of IFRS 15, the new revenue recognition standard.]


READ THE FULL REPORT HERE​

Commenting on the results and prospects, Mike Love, Non-Executive Chairman, said:
“2018 was clearly a challenging year for the Group. The executive team has nevertheless worked tirelessly and, despite the challenges faced during the year of GDPR, the loss of a major client, the continued investment in new products and, during 2018, the implications of re-structuring to reduce our cost base, we are now well on our way to restoring Dillistone to healthy operating profits on a sustainable footing.”

Definitions:

1The component elements of recurring revenues are detailed in note 5.

2 Adjusted operating profit is statutory operating profit before acquisition costs, related intangible amortisation, movements in contingent consideration and other one-off costs. See note 4.

3. Adjusted basic EPS is computed from statutory profits after tax adjusted to exclude the post-tax effect of acquisition costs, related intangible amortisation, movements in contingent consideration and other one-off costs. See note 10

Results Webinar - Jason Starr, Chief Executive, and Julie Pomeroy, Finance Director, will be hosting a webinar to review the results at 3.00pm on Wednesday 8 May 2019.  To register please visit https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8156505307777159948 or contact Tom Cooper on tom.cooper@walbrookpr.com or 0797 122 1972.

Annual Report and Accounts - The final results announcement can be downloaded from the Company's website (www.dillistonegroup.com). Copies of the Annual Report and Accounts (in addition to the notice of the Annual General Meeting) will be sent to shareholders by 31 May 2019 for approval at the Annual General Meeting to be held on 26 June 2019.

This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of EU Regulation 596/2014.

Enquiries:

Mike Love (Chairman) Dillistone Group Plc 020 7749 6100
Jason Starr (Chief Executive) Dillistone Group Plc 020 7749 6100
Julie Pomeroy (Finance Director) Dillistone Group Plc 020 7749 6100
Chris Fielding (Nominated Adviser) WH Ireland Limited 020 7220 1650

Tom Cooper/Paul Vann

Walbrook PR

020 3176 4722
0797 122 1972

tom.cooper@walbrookpr.com

Notes to Editors:

Dillistone Group Plc (www.dillistonegroup.com) is a leader in the supply and support of software and services to the recruitment industry. It has five brands operating through three divisions: Dillistone Systems, which targets the executive search industry (www.dillistone.com); Voyager Software, which targets other recruitment markets (www.voyagersoftware.com); and GatedTalent, the next generation executive recruitment database (www.GatedTalent.com).

Dillistone has made three acquisitions: Voyager Software in September 2011, FCP Internet in July 2013 and ISV Software in September 2014.  The Group operates under the FileFinder, Infinity, Evolve, ISV and GatedTalent brands. 

Dillistone was admitted to AIM, a market operated by the London Stock Exchange plc, in June 2006.  The Group employs over 100 people globally with offices in London (head office) Basingstoke and Southampton, Frankfurt, New Jersey and Sydney.

CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT

2018 was a challenging year for the business. The loss of a major client, announced in Summer 2017 but materialising in February 2018, had a year on year revenue impact of around £0.625m.  Meanwhile, the new General Data Protection Regulations meant that the Group, like all technology businesses, had to invest heavily in compliance.  This investment covered everything from product development and infrastructure through to staff training and reviews of our various legal documents.

2018 was also the start of a period of change.  In February of 2019, we announced the closure of our London office as part of a broader restructuring.  However, some of the groundwork for this project was undertaken in 2018, with the implementation of various company wide systems and procedures.  The restructuring programme is expected to return the Group to a healthy level of operating profit on a sustainable basis.
 
While much work was undertaken behind the scenes in 2018, we also continued to develop our products.  Enhancements and new functionality were delivered for each of our leading products, while the year also saw the first revenue materialise for our GatedTalent platform.
 
GatedTalent experienced various highs and lows during the year. In the early stages of the year, we significantly surpassed our initial expectations for recruiter take up but were disappointed by the number of executive registrations. In the second half of the year, we saw registrations begin to accelerate, and in Q4 we launched “Member Services” which is a new premium B2C revenue stream. We are pleased to report that this has proven successful and, less than 6 months since launch, we now realise more recurring revenue every month from Member Services than we do from any single executive search firm contract.
 
Overall, Group revenue fell 11% to £8.692m, of which recurring revenue fell 10% to £7.154m – a significant part of this loss was the previously referenced client departure.   IFRS 15 Revenue from contracts with customers was introduced with effect from 1 January 2018 and has resulted in the restatement of the 2017 numbers.

Adjusted operating profit dropped significantly to £0.055m (2017: £0.459m), in part due to the continued investment in GatedTalent and in part due to the loss of the major client.  The operating loss generated by GatedTalent was £0.612m.

The Board remains committed to investing in and supporting the Group’s core products and remains excited by the potential of GatedTalent.  

 
Dividends
The Group is not recommending a final dividend in respect of the year to 31 December 2018 (2017: 0.5p per share).

Staff
Our staff are fundamental to our success. It is through their efforts, commitment and determination that we continue to be a leading technology provider in the sectors we serve. On behalf of the Board I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our staff for their individual and collective contributions during 2018 and the support we have seen for the changes we are making to the Group.

Outlook
The current year has begun well in each of the three divisions. However, the Board is cognisant of the economic challenges that the year may bring.

 
As announced in February 2019, the Directors are taking the opportunity to reduce the number of UK offices from three to two by exercising an option to break the lease of the London office later in the year and to increase the size of our Basingstoke and Eastleigh offices.
 
The majority of our London based staff have been given the opportunity to relocate to Basingstoke, Eastleigh or to work from home and we are pleased to report that the vast majority of our client facing staff are likely to accept this offer. The Board anticipates that the efficiencies gained from merging the various teams across the Group into fewer locations will allow the Group to maintain current levels of client service and product development investment while delivering a significant reduction in costs from 2020 onwards. This exercise will inevitably lead to the Group incurring restructuring costs this year, which are currently estimated to be in the region of £500,000 to £900,000 and which are expected to be met without recourse to shareholders.  An update on the cost of the restructuring and the anticipated savings will be provided later in the year.

 
The Board currently expects that the Group will deliver a profit before tax in 2019 which will be comparable with 2018 (£0.018m) before restructuring and acquisition related costs. Profit is expected to grow strongly in future years as the benefits of the restructuring and the investment in GatedTalent start to materialise.
 
Dr Mike Love
Non-Executive Chairman


READ THE FULL REPORT HERE​