Pliezhausen, March 22, 2017. The Annual General Meeting of DATAGROUP SE (WKN A0JC8S) today decided to raise the dividend from 25 to 30 cents per share. This way, the shareholders benefit from the record earnings of the past fiscal year 2015/2016. For the current fiscal year, the management expects another strong increase in revenues and earnings, and raises its full-year forecast.
Some 77% of the share capital were represented at today’s Annual General Meeting of DATAGROUP SE. All agenda items were approved unanimously or with a large majority, including the distribution of a dividend of 30 cents per share. Overall, the company will pay out EUR 2,271,737.70 to its shareholders, equalling 38% of the net profit. The remaining amount of EUR 3,721,626.24 will be carried forward to new account. With revenues of EUR 175m and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of EUR 19.1m in FY 2015/2016, DATAGROUP had significantly exceeded the former all-time-highs and in each case reached the upper end of its guidance.
Other important resolutions of the meeting have been an authorisation granted to the management to apply for a switch from the open market segment to the regulated market, and the election of the new supervisory board. Dr. Carola Wittig, Heinz Hilgert and Dr. Helmut Mahler, the acting members, have been confirmed for another five years.
“The fiscal year was highly successful for DATAGROUP”, commented DATAGROUP COO Dirk Peters. “We have generated strong double-digit growth and record earnings and, at the same time, have laid key foundations for the future. This includes in particular the takeover of 306 SAP and application specialists from Hewlett-Packard Enterprise and the successful conversion to a European Company. The German market for IT services is changing very dynamically. We are actively and powerfully involved in this change as part of our long-term growth strategy DATAGROUP 2020.”
The very positive development is continued in FY 2016/2017 (01.10.2016 – 30.09.2017), as the executive board members highlighted in their outlook. DATAGROUP has seen particularly strong growth in the strategic core business with high-margin Cloud and outsourcing services. The integration of the IT specialists taken over from HPE works smoothly as well. This makes DATAGROUP even more profitable. In the first five months of FY 2016/2017, revenues grew significantly by 31% to EUR 88.7m (previous year EUR 67.7m). EBITDA climbed by 68% to EUR 8.9m (previous year EUR 5.3m), earnings per share (EPS) skyrocketed by 122% to 40 cents (previous year 18 cents).
“The successful HPE deal underlines how we can take the company’s revenue, earnings and know-how to the next level with the help of targeted company acquisitions”, commented DATAGROUP CEO Max H.-H. Schaber. “Acquisitions are an integral part of our growth strategy, and we are permanently in discussion with potential takeover candidates. However, to be able to respond quickly to great acquisition opportunities in the future as well we need to improve the equity ratio. This can be gradually achieved through a strong development of operating earnings. To accelerate this process, we are also considering to implement a capital increase of up to 10% of the share capital.” The HPE transaction and the issuance of a promissory note loan with a volume of EUR 30m in the previous year had led to a considerable extension of the balance sheet, as a result of which the equity ratio sank to below 20%.
Based on the very good business development the management has increased its full-year guidance with revenues of between EUR 210m and EUR 220m (so far: over EUR 200m) and EBITDA of between EUR 21.5m and EUR 22.5m (so far: over EUR 20m) being expected for FY 2016/2017.