DWS celebrates best result since 2013

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DWS celebrates best result since 2013

Melbourne-headquartered IT service provider DWS has boosted its revenue by 53 percent - as well as lifting profit, earnings and staff numbers - in a turnaround 2016 financial year.

The company hit $144.5 million of revenue for the twelve months ending 30 June 2016, raking in $49.9 million more than the previous year.

DWS also boasted $16.8 million of net profit for the 2016 financial year, up 62 percent from the previous year's $6.4 million.

Underlying EBITDA for the 2016 financial year also increased similarly, reaching $25.8 million after 63 percent growth.

The results saw DWS shares hit $1.40 as of 10:55am Monday morning - the highest price since November 2013.

DWS chief financial officer Stuart Whipp and chairperson Martin Ralston noted in a presentation to shareholders on Monday morning that $45.5 million of the revenue growth was from the acquisitions of Symplicit and Phoenix IT. The remaining $4.4 million was attributed to organic growth.

In June 2015, DWS paid $8.5 million for UX design company Symplicit, and just two months later another $19.5 million was found to buy a majority stake in consulting firm Phoenix IT.

Whipp and Ralston noted that while the increased work and the new acquisitions had lead to a boost in consultant headcount from 517 to 715 over the twelve months, the average utilisation per person went from 75 to 84 percent.

Over the 2014 and 2015 financial years, DWS was forced to slash its consultant workforce in response to shrinking profits. The headcount sunk from 535 to 473 over that two-year period.

That turbulent period saw net profit drop 23 percent in 2014 and 19 percent in 2015, with chief executive Lachlan Armstrong falling on his sword after just one year in the job. Chief financial officer James Hatherley, the brains behind last year's acquisitions, also resigned in December after two years with the company, replaced by Whipp.

Banking and finance dominated DWS' focus in 2016, accounting for 39 percent of revenue, while the IT & communications vertical brought in 26 percent. This was a stark contrast to the mix four years ago, when transport (15 percent in 2013, now just 2 percent) and resources (8 percent in 2013, now just 1 percent) were much more significant contributors.

ASX-listed DWS was established in 1991 and currently has offices in every mainland state capital in Australia plus Canberra.

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