While wiped out its profits during the first half of its financial year, identity verification specialist GB Group hailed the “excellent strategic progress” it had made.
The Chester-based company employs around 1,200 people and works with Volvo, HSBC, eBay, John Lewis, ASOS, Lego, Santander, and IBM.
It recently hit the headlines after takeover talks with a Chicago-based private equity firm were revealed in September. They came to an end at the start of October, however.
Newly-filed figures with the London Stock Exchange show it made a pre-tax loss of £24,000 for the six months to September 30, 2022, compared to a profit of £14.3m in the same period last year.
The fall was despite the group’s revenue increasing from £109.1m to £133.8m.
Over the past six months, Chief Executive Chris Clark said: “We have made excellent progress across the group as we remain relentless in our pursuit of delivering on our long-term growth strategy, bringing together our leading location, identity, and fraud solutions to serve customers’ ever-growing needs in the digital age.
“Our fantastic people worldwide are vital to this success, and I would like to thank them for their efforts.
“Their continued hard work and dedication have underpinned GBG as it has evolved into one of the world’s leading pure-play identity software providers.
Even though macroeconomic uncertainties still exist, the company’s board is confident that the business will continue to grow with world-class technology and a diverse customer base.
In its outlook, the company noted: “The second half of the financial year has begun in line with our expectations, despite macroeconomic pressures impacting some of our end markets.”.
“Year to date, cryptocurrency, and internet-economy customers have seen the most significant slowdown, with customers in traditional financial services such as banking, pensions, and insurance more stable.
“We note that the second half has seen cryptocurrency customer activity normalize at a similar run-rate to the second quarter. These customers account for around 2% of group revenue for the remainder of the year.
As expected, we expect to deliver mid-single-digit sales growth in constant currency in the second half of the year, despite the challenging comparator period driven by cryptocurrency customers.
“We also expect to continue to benefit from foreign currency translation tailwinds that increased our first-half reported revenue by 7%. We hope this tailwind for the second-half growth rate to be around 6% at prevailing currency rates.
“The group remains focused on prioritizing activities that will drive growth. We have maintained our disciplined investment in the business to maintain our market-leading position and capitalize on the significant potential in our markets.
As revenue growth accelerates and costs reduce, we expect to achieve higher margins in the second half of the year, in line with market expectations. We remain confident in our pipeline. “The board remains highly confident in the long-term opportunity. GBG’s services are crucial for our customers to operate safely and efficiently in a digital world, underpinning the resilience of our business and outlook from an ever-increasing business presence online. Let’s talk about how we can grow together in the long run.”