The directors or Coms are have today released the audited results for the year ended 31 January 2011.
The full annual report and accounts for the year ended 31 January 2011 together with the notice of annual general meeting to be held on 31st of August 2011 has today been sent to shareholders and are available at the Company's website at www.coms.com
- Revenue growth of 8% to £3.52m (2010: £3.25m)
- Gross profit increased by 4% to £0.881m (2010: £0.842m)
- Gross margin remains consistent and in excess of 25%
- Restructuring benefits beginning to impact
- Repositioning as a Provider of Cloud Telephony
- Launch of Apple iPhone and iPad voice apps
The Chairman released a statement as follows, "The Board of Coms initiated significant restructuring of the team at VCOMM during the financial year in order to focus our core businesses around the exciting opportunities created by the launch of Microsoft's Lync, a business telephony application for Microsoft Exchange, and the increasing importance of Cloud services.
The benefits from this repositioning are already clearly visible in the opening months of the current year although, inevitably, such a significant restructuring resulted in some short term disruption and cost in the second half. Nevertheless, I am pleased to report that revenues increased by 8% to £3.52m and gross profit was up by 4% to £0.88m in the year to 31 January 2011. I am also encouraged that gross margin remained in excess of 25% which is consistent with the margins achieved in previous years.
A significant achievement during the year was the signing of a reseller and distribution agreement with Obsidian Telecoms which provides a mobile phone call savings package for the Group's customers; savings of up to 50 per cent can be achieved. Essentially Coms will receive a revenue share on all mobile call minutes. Significantly, given the Group's strategic focus, Obsidian's mobile solution also operates with the Lync communications application and will be part of the Group's pbx service offering to the corporate market.
Since the year end the Group achieved another significant step in partnering with E-MetroTel to market UCx under an exclusive distributorship agreement. UCx is a new innovative Unified Communications system that is designed to enable users of BT-supplied Nortel systems to keep their hardware while gaining all the benefits of using VoIP from service providers such as Coms.
The repositioning of Coms as a Cloud Telephony company will be completed in the autumn. This will result in a re-launch of the Company's websites and increased marketing programmes to attract new customers.
The Board believes that just as technical advances in mobile telephones and networks in the 80's took business from the traditional fixed telephone networks, the opportunity to provide "voice apps" to user of iPads and other mobile devices over Wi-Fi will take business away from the mobile networks and provide significant opportunities for growth. The Board is committed to ensuring that Coms is a leading European player in providing voice apps on mobile devices. During the financial year we have launched our first Apple iPhone apps and recently announced the launch of our iPad Cloud voice app. Developments of the service will include the Google Android platform plus innovative new features including Facebook presence and integrated video.
Our industry continues to evolve, and we are seeing particularly strong growth in the US market. Much of this is driven by the launch of Microsoft's Lync and its acquisition of the consumer VoIP service, Skype, for US$8b.
I strongly believe that the UK and European markets will follow the US market. Traditional fixed line and mobile telephone services will be upgraded to Cloud based telephony services, like those provided by Coms, as the economics and increased functionality is compelling for both consumers and businesses. This is the main reason many forecasters continue to predict strong growth in the Internet telephony sector. Our recent launch of the Apple iPhone and iPad app brings the same functionality to individual users. More than 25 million iPads have now been sold and Coms can bring telephony functionality to these products using our Cloud-based service app available from Apple's itunes App store.
We believe the Group is in good shape. Both Coms and VCOMM continue to win new customers giving a progressively increasing level of recurring income from monthly subscriptions and call usage. Just before the year end Coms raised in excess of £640,000, gross, of new money which, since the year end has been used to further develop the business. However, we are aware that generally, investor sentiment does not currently favour early stage loss making technology companies. Our corporate strategy therefore remains focused on sustainable growth that will lead to profitability in the short term. Once we have reached a critical mass of customers, the monthly subscriptions will ensure healthy, sustainable profitability.
I remain very optimistic about the future of Coms plc."