Misys Plc, a Worcester-based developer and designer of computer systems for insurance brokers, is coming to the Unlisted Securities Market on March 5 via a placing of around 1.275m shares – 15% of its equity. The expected UKP1m plus proceeds from the placing, which is being handled by stockbroker Albert E Sharp, will all go to the company. Some of the money will be used to help develop, or buy, new products. Misys’ current range includes administration, motor insurance, life insurance and pensions management packages, all of which are designed to run under the highly-regarded Tripos operating system developed at Cambridge University on Misys’ own Motorola 68020-based Megamicros. For the half year to November 30, Misys made pre-tax profits of UKP350,000 on turnover of UKP1.3m, and it is forecasting that the full year, to May 30 1987, will see profits over UKP800,000. If the forecast is proved correct, and forecasts of companies going public usually prove to be 10% to 15% on the conservative side, 1986-7 will be the third year out of four that Misys’ profits have more than doubled. They have shot from UKP4,000 in fiscal 1983, to UKP79,000 on sales of UKP800,000 in fiscal 1984, to UKP144,000 on sales of UKP1.1m in 1984-5 and for the last full year, to May 30 1986, were UKP312,000 on turnover of UKP1.7m. This year’s leap forward is attributed, by Albert E Sharp’s Eddie McCutcheon, to long-time non-executive chairman Kevin Lomax, a former managing director of a Hanson Trust subsidiary and of Central Manufacturing and Trading Plc, coming aboard full-time as chief executive. There is little sign in the short to medium term that the profits growth will slow down. The company estimates that only 15% of the 10,000 to 15,000 independent insurance brokers in the UK are computerised but the recently-enacted Financial Services Act, and the general competitive pressures in the insurance industry should increase that percentage dramatically over the next two to three years. On the debit side, as Misys in its own literature points out, it already has over half a dozen rivals, including Hoskyns Group Plc and Kalamazoo Plc, for the attention of the insurers and, with the strong profit potential, others may be waiting to join in.
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