Huge Group on Monday reported a 63% rise in revenue for the year ended 28 February 2018, to R401 million, having more than tripled its customer base.
Operating profit climbed to R113 million, from R42 million, while headline earnings per share improved to 46.34 cents, from 26.30 cents previously.
Over the last five years Huge said it has focused on growing its core mobility and connectivity business and has scaled-up its operations significantly.
It now offers a three-pronged service offering to a substantial SME market. Route-to-market includes both direct, through Huge Connect and Huge Networks and indirect, through a substantial and unique value-added reseller channel that resides in Huge Telecom.
Huge said it started the financial year with 15 000 customers and ended with a real estate customer base of circa 45,000. “By way of reference, we estimate that the South African four large domestic banks are each servicing 50,000 to 75,000 SME customers,” it said.
The group said its telecom grouping achieved a 7% increase in revenue after the inclusion of 11 months of revenue from Huge Networks. “While trading conditions during FY2018 were tough for the telecom grouping, it was still able to increase its base of installed telephone lines by 4%, its base of installed data services by 15% and its base of monthly annuity customers by 6%.”
The revenue of the fintech grouping includes 11 months of revenue from Huge Connect, which was acquired with effect from 30 March 2017.
“The group’s introduction into payment connectivity via Huge Connect will inevitably lead Huge into related services and ultimately Fintech, where we anticipate delivering disruptive and innovative solutions to our customers, in partnership with financial institutions,” Huge said.
Currently, Huge has connected over 120,000 devices for our customers.
“Platforms for mobile payments, mobility, connectivity and the ‘fintech evolution’ provide an exciting and innovative space for the Group to explore. Its expanding customer real estate means that the creation of bespoke financial offerings in partnership with financial institutions becomes viable and potentially a highly attractive investment space,” it said.
Huge said that looking forward, acquisitive activity will continue to be essential to its strategy, with bolt-on acquisitions and service-diversification investments being actively pursued.