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February 25, 1999


By CBR Staff Writer

London Bridge Software Holdings Plc (LBSH), a London-based software and services provider for the credit risk management market, has had another superb year. Revenues and profits have doubled and the recent acquisition of customer relationship management (CRM) outfit Hatton Blue Ltd (CI No 3, 585) has added depth to LBSH’s debt recovery software offerings, bringing another aspect of the credit management process under its control. Net profits for the year to December 31 1998 jumped 111% to 5.8m pounds on revenue that rose 98% to 22.3m pounds. There are various reasons for LBSH’s advances. It has reaped the benefits of two additional divisions purchased in the last eighteen months, recovery management service (RMS), and a mortgage systems division. The latter has allowed LBSH to make an inroads into the lucrative American mortgage market. London Bridge can now sell the rest of its financial package to customers already exposed to its mortgage products. The growing presence in the US in the past year is evidenced by high-profile contracts signed with Chase Manhattan Bank and the US Department of Justice. Chairman Gordon Crawford has suggested that the company is seeking acquisitions for loan processing software, but has not disclosed any specific plans. Vectus, Hatton Blue’s CRM software package, gives LBSH a boost in terms of seeking out customers for its credit software tools. However, the company will also be looking to update existing processing packages, such as LSAMS. The Hatton Blue product has never been marketed outside the UK, which gives London Bridge a source of tremendous potential revenues. London Bridge will also be bringing outsourced contracts in-house and intends to relocate its offices in Atlanta and Orlando to provide more space and take on 25-30 new staff. So far, competitors have not given the London firm too rough a ride but the company’s market lead cannot last forever, especially in such a hot area as CRM.

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