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Advantage of profit is share dip

By Nicholas Bryant

Friday 11th August 2000

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Greg Cross
Listed eftpos company Advantage Group reported sound annual results on Wednesday but its share price got hammered by punters led to expect a major announcement.

Advantage showed it had forged ahead in its traditional market of eftpos equipment while building revenue through acquisition as an e-commerce services provider.

It reported a net profit after tax of $3 million for the year to June 30, down on the previous year's $3.4 million, but reported what it called a "normalised profit" of $6.7 million as its final result to the Stock Exchange. The normalised profit figure included $3.7 million of goodwill related to acquisitions over the past year.

Those new businesses have given Advantage a presence in the web services market, helping other companies get into e-business.

Advantage chief executive Greg Cross said other acquisitions were on the horizon, most likely in Australia.

The company believed to be next in Advantage's sights is Whitewolf, an Australian e-solutions company whose flagship creation, website MAX, is described as an enterprise-wide e-publishing solution.

Advantage also reported strong revenue growth, generating turnover of $63.9 million up from $21.2 million in the previous year. It predicts 72% growth in revenue for the year to 2001.

Although analysts said they had been delivered good news in more detail than Advantage usually provided, many had expected a significant announcement along the lines of an alliance or acquisition, especially given the Telecom-esque lockup Advantage had organised.

When there was no big announcement Advantage's shares dropped 13c to $2.93, close to where they had been a week earlier.

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