Woking, Surrey-based SaaS construction collaboration vendor Conject UK, a subsidiary of the Munich-based Conject Group, enjoyed a better 2013, reporting turnover up 16% on the previous year, to £5.028m, finally ending the downward drift that began during the global financial crisis in 2009.
The revenue performance is in line with the expectations set in October last year, when Conject UK CEO Steve Cooper told me UK revenues up to the end of September had grown15% (clearly, the improvement continued through to the year end). The firm’s order book position also improved, with “future recognisable revenues” at 31 December 2013 up 8% to £11.69m.
Conject UK still made a small operating loss. At £164k, this was a marked improvement on the previous year’s £596k, and even if the exceptional costs were stripped out, the 2013 results remain better than 2012’s (while still constituting a fourth straight loss).
These results, of course, need to be assessed as part of a bigger picture. The Conject Group employs over 150 people as against the UK business’s 50, and total Group revenues last year passed €20m (£16.6m), having grown 14% during the year, so UK growth was slightly ahead of the rest of the group, perhaps due to the different strengths of the group’s regional operations and product portfolios.
Looking at Conject’s main UK rivals, the revenue growth rate still lags behind that of London-based Asite, whose income grew 25.6% in the year to 30 June 2013 (post). It will be interesting to see what Asite’s latest numbers are, as it could conceivably overtake Conject, though I reckon Asite will still lag behind 4Projects – which talked about double-digit growth in recent trading updates but is seemingly less forthcoming with numbers these days following its acquisition by US-owned Viewpoint.
UK market moves
The Conject directors report:
“During the year the company experienced increased confidence returning to a number of its larger markets. Whilst there was still a degree of nervousness there was an increase in orders received from both the UK and Middle East property markets.”
They say the business opened a new office in Singapore (securing five projects in that market) during 2013. Other successful international markets included Qatar, New Zealand, Malaysia, Denmark, north America, Saudi Arabia and Azerbaijan.
Domestically, Conject flagged several new project and enterprise engagements, and highlighted as “significant” a deal with National Grid in the UK. “In London the company is working on three of the capital’s largest redevelopment programmes, at King’s Cross, Earls Court and Elephant & Castle.”
Looking at the product portfolio, the report says:
“The UK team are playing a lead role in helping the group enhance its range of applications to service the contractor market, a market not serviced by the group outside the UK. Two of the key projects are focused on supporting mobile working and Building Information Modelling….”
Updates (2 and 5 September 2014) – Conject has issued a news release and a 5 September blog post regarding its selection by National Grid (mentioned above) to administer contracts with their delivery partners on [I’m told, a five-year] programme of UK energy infrastructure projects.
The Conject platform has been configured to integrate National Grid and its contractor supply chain, ensuring that all project stakeholders are kept informed about what actions and responses are required to ensure compliance with the specified terms, timescales and options of the various engineering contracts used (NEC, FIDIC). Selection involved a two-day process including real-life test scenarios with National Grid and contractor employees to test capabilities. Conject won the project because its software could be tailored to the needs of all users.