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MISYS TO COMPETE WITH ITS INSURANCE CUSTOMERS AS NET BROKER

Misys Plc, one of the UK’s most successful software companies, has boosted its growth with 70m pounds of acquisitions this year and now it has plans for a revolutionary new sales channel as an internet-based insurance broker. For the year to May 31, Misys has reported net profits of 45.9m pounds, up 25% on revenue that rose 16% to 325.5m pounds. Misys is a well known face in the insurance market where it sells systems and software to 40% of the UK’s insurance brokers. But the company is planning to go head to head with its own customers later this year as it opens an online insurance policy service called Screen Trade. Initially, Screen Trade will support only eight insurance companies providing around 30 different car policies, and rivals are skeptical about how competitive such a small service can be. But Misys insist that the quotes offered will be representative of the industry and the company has high hopes for the new web site which it sees as having huge potential in a vastly under exploited market. The insurance division of Misys grew revenues by just 3% this year to 41.2m pounds while profits fell back 5% to 12.0m pounds. The banking division, which makes up over half the company, took three new acquisitions under its wing in the period, and sales of its software applications for treasury and client account management grew by 29%, with profits up by 43%. Banking is a truly international business for Misys, bringing in the majority of the group’s 163m pounds of overseas revenues. The overall picture is one of record sales, profits and an order book up 20% as the financial services industry continues to diversify and expand. Any worries about the stock being overvalued at an earnings multiple of 20 have been cast aside in the stampede and the shares are up 57.5 pence at 1,522.5 pence. Misys increased the total dividend for the year by 15% to 12.26 pence.

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