Last August, I looked at the latest accounts from Aconex (UK) Ltd, the UK arm of the Melbourne, Australia-based construction collaboration technology vendor, noting the impact of the global financial crisis on its London-based operation, with revenues down 11% and a pre-tax loss. The latest report and accounts filed at Companies House, covering the year ending 30 June 2010, show turnover grew, but so too did pre-tax losses.
The report covers the same period as the parent group’s accounts, which I discussed with Aconex directors in February (see Accounting for Aconex). Then I was told the Middle East was a “weak spot”, Europe/Africa was also “a bit weak”, and the UK “was a bit tough for everybody”. This seems partly borne out by the figures. Aconex (UK) Ltd, which includes regional subsidiaries in Romania and Algeria, increased its turnover to £2.147m (up 27% from £1.688m in the year to 30 June 2009), pushing it above £2m for the first time, but losses increased almost five-fold, from just over £57k to £272,005. Operations in north Africa had been boosting the company’s revenues, but it is possible that recent regional unrest may have had an impact on the current year.
Aconex (UK)’s turnover edges it ahead of UK AEC rival Asite, which in the same period achieved a similar increase in revenues, up to £2.021m, and a pre-tax operating profit of £0.133m (see Asite – steady).
From its latest filing to Companies House, it appears Asite curtailed its activities outside the UK during the year to 30 June 2009. UK-based operations accounted for 95% of its revenues, up from 86% in the previous accounting period, largely due to its almost complete withdrawal from the troubled United Arab Emirates market. Operating costs were trimmed partly by staff reductions, with average head count down from 67 to 60, and by cuts in directors’ remuneration (down from £375k to £250k), among other measures.