14 March 2013 | Education | Tribal Group plc

Tribal Group plc Release Year End Results

Tribal, a leading provider of technology products and services to the education, learning and training markets in the UK and internationally, announces its preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2012.

  • ​Strong profit growth: 27% increase in adjusted pre-tax profit to £12.8m (£10.1m in 2011)
  • Revenue increased by 7% to £113.4 million (£105.8m in 2011)
  • Net debt reduced by 38% to £9.9m (£16.0m in 2011)
  • Business simplified and focused through the Systems and Solutions businesses, operating through three sales regions – UK & Ireland, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World
  • Strong UK market positions retained and international revenues have now grown to 22% of total revenue

John Ormerod, Chairman, commented:

 "Tribal is trading well, and we have a number of growth initiatives underway which offer good potential. Our systems and solutions remain strong in their UK markets, and we are seeing increasing momentum for our offerings in international markets, both those in which we currently operate and selected potential new markets. As a result, we continue to make good progress towards our strategic target of doubling earnings per share over the three-year period ending 31 December 2014.

"Our current trading is in line with our expectations for 2013. As a consequence of seasonality in our business, and our continued programme of investment, we anticipate our profits in 2013 will be weighted towards the second half of the year, and Tribal has good potential to make further progress over the medium-term."


"We have made good progress during the first year of our three year strategic plan.  Tribal is a focused and simplified business, concentrated on its core UK and international markets. We are well placed to maintain our strong market positions, and to take advantage of new opportunities that are becoming increasingly visible to us. 

We are seeing the benefits of our focus through enhanced operational and financial performance.  Our adjusted operating profits grew by 16% to £13.9m, and good cash flow supported an increased level of investment in our products and people, while also reducing our net debt to below £10m.

By increasing our investment in software development, we have sustained the market leading positions of our major systems and solutions in the UK and strengthened our international reputation. We are now well established as a leading provider to the education markets in Australia and New Zealand, we are operating successfully in the Middle East, and we are evaluating attractive opportunities in other international markets including North America. Our acquisition of i-graduate, completed in January 2013, brings new skills and a presence in European and Asian markets.

We are continuing to invest in our people and expertise in the UK and internationally. Enhancing our service delivery capabilities, to ensure we can confidently follow through new business wins with high quality execution, is a priority. We now operate a global sales structure, and our main software development and support teams, based in the UK and Australia, are complemented by software development partners based in Brazil and China.

Tribal has become an increasingly international business whilst retaining its clarity of purpose. Our task now is to sustain our momentum as we move forward with our plans during 2013."


Competitive advantage through technology

Tribal's investment in new software development is based on careful analysis of customers' requirements, keeping the software fresh and relevant. Investment has increased substantially, rising from £3.6m in 2011 to £6.2m in 2012.

Acquisition of i-graduate

The Company is focused on organic growth but carefully chosen acquisitions, such as that of i-graduate in January 2013, can accelerate strategy plans.

i-graduate works with over 1,200 education institutions in 24 countries, analysing feedback from more than 1.3 million students of over 190 nationalities. 

The year ended 31 December 2012 was the first of  the Group’s three-year strategic plan. The target is to more than double earnings per share over the three years ending 31 December 2014.

Delivering the three-year strategic plan

Organic growth initiatives are where the Company has placed its focus and at the heart of the strategy are two goals:

1.   Retain current market leading positions in the UK:

•     Creating new modules and services for existing customer base;

•     Developing new systems for the children's services and schools markets

•     Creating scalable software based tools to support education providers.

2.   To internationalise the systems and solutions to English speaking markets:

•     Continue to grow in Australasia;

•     Undertake selected projects in the Middle East

•     Explore North American markets.

Investment in 2012 has been focused on enhancing the Group’s software based systems and tools, and growing their resources in existing and new countries of operation.

Focus for 2013

During 2013 the Company intends to accelerate their development, building on the advances they made during 2012. This progress will be underpinned by continued discipline in Tribal’s core activities: delivering on major systems projects such as SALM and increasing efficiency in their software development functions.

In Tribal’s UK markets, they are focused on sustaining their leading positions through new customer wins and continued enhancement to their systems and solutions.  

These are the actions that form the core of the organic growth strategy, alongside which bolt-on acquisitions will be considered which complement current positions. 

Chief Executive Officer, Keith Evans commented:

"Our current trading is in line with our expectations for 2013. As a consequence of seasonality in our business, and our continued programme of investment, we anticipate our profits in 2013 will be weighted towards the second half of the year, and Tribal has good potential to make further progress over the medium term."

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