Smartpay suffers huge profit slump
By Sophie Boot
Smartpay Holdings, the listed payment terminal supplier, reported a 90 percent slump in first half profit and is in the process of rebuilding its business after losing a major wholesale contract last year.
Net profit fell to $143,000, or 0.08 cents per share, in the six months ended September 30, from $1.5 million, or 0.87 cents per share, a year earlier, the Auckland-based company said.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and other charges sank 23 percent to $3.7 million on a 16 percent drop in revenue to $9.9 million.
"The outcomes of these decisions, while not apparent in this period's results, are now showing clear progress and growth," the company said. "While not yet evident in these half-year results, we expect this growth will be clear when we report our full-year results."
Smartpay anticipated the revenue loss when it decided to sell directly to Australia's taxi industry at the expense of its major wholesale contract, which ended in December last year.
Since then, the company has been focused on developing its Australian TaxiPOS taxi payments business in the first half, and had made "substantial progress in growing this revenue and profit line," it said.
"To date we have deployed and are earning revenue from over 1500 taxi terminals under our new model and have a substantial pipeline of opportunities which we expect will contribute to the ongoing growth of our Australian business."
Smartpay needs about 3000 terminals to replace revenue from its previous contract, with 1500 terminals representing about 7 percent of the Australian taxi market.
The company identified potential mergers and acquisitions among its strategies to reshape the business, saying it has a number of opportunities under consideration.
The board didn't declare a dividend.
The shares fell 6.7 percent to 14 cents, and have dropped 25 percent this year.