Johannesburg - Restructured SecureData was looking to emerging markets and the small, medium and micro and enterprise (SMME) sector for future growth, chief executive Miles Crisp said yesterday.
Future revenues are also expected to be bolstered by the provision of security for remote devices such as media tablets and smartphones that are used in the corporate environment as well as security solutions for wi-fi networks and information that is stored remotely via cloud computing.
“We expect strong growth from emerging markets,” Crisp said. “We see a lot of growth from SMMEs.
“It used to be that large organisations would get firewalls to prevent staff from surfing porn,” but these days the challenge was from other organisations stealing access to data.
“So it’s about the stability of networks and performance of the networks,” he said.
Much of the growth would be driven through an improved product mix and a new very senior sales team, which the company appointed in the past 15 months as it has implemented a turnaround strategy.
Focus has turned to generating new business in partnership with channel resellers. During the year to July this approach contributed to the 30 percent jump in revenue to R222.2 million.
Most of this revenue was derived from activities in the SecureData Africa division.
Crisp said the emerging markets business grew by 90 percent and now constituted 20 percent of the entire business. Annual results were published late on Friday afternoon.
“It is up to us to make sure our basket of products is the most relevant,” said Crisp, who stepped in in August last year to help turn the firm around.
JSE-listed SecureData distributes security products to clients including corporates and small businesses as well as governments elsewhere on the continent. It provides specialised information security services in Europe and the US.
The restructuring resulted in the shrinking of headcount to 104 people from 140 in the SecureData Africa division and the sale of SecureData Europe, which recapitalised the listed parent firm, SecureData.
Part of the proceeds were returned to shareholders in a dividend of 25c a share. This was paid out this year and reduced SecureData’s net cash position to R14.3m from R89.6m at the end of July last year.
The group returned to profitability during the year, with earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) of R39 000 from a loss of R47.7m as a result of higher revenues and reorganisation of the product mix. Group net profit for the year was R2.38m, resulting in headline earnings a share of 1c from a headline loss of 15.2c last year.
SecureData Africa, which markets and distributes information risk management products in South Africa and across the continent, reported an improvement in Ebitda loss to R259 000 from R45.8m a year ago. SensePost, which provides niche information security assessment services, grew Ebitda by 5 percent to R8.4m.
Crisp said SecureData Africa was expected to return to profitability in the current financial year.
Shares were untraded at 40c. - Business Report