Acquisitive telecoms firm Chess posted impressive growth in fiscal year 2009, with revenue up more a fifth and net profit more than doubling.
In the 12 months to the end of April, turnover grew 22 per cent year on year to £25.7m, while post-tax income stood at £1.6m, up from £739,000 in 2008.
The Cheshire-based firm, which went private in July, claims to have swelled its customer base by 10,000 over the course of the year, with growth coming both organically and through acquisition. Three further acquisitions have since been closed, including that of XTel Communications' database, Chess' 35th buyout, which went through last month.
The firm intends to continue its consolidation quest and, to support this, it has arranged a £3m revolving advance facility, £2.5m bank loan facility and £1m overdraft facility with the Royal Bank of Scotland. Chess claims it "has no significant concentration of credit risk, with exposure spread over 19,000 customers".
In his chief executive's statement, David Pollock displayed confidence that his firm could continue growing, despite the testing economic conditions.
"Organic sales have shown good growth as UK businesses strive to reduce costs in this tough economic climate," he wrote. "Despite the media hype surrounding the recession, we have found negligible increase in customer bad debt.
"However, there has been an upturn in the number of acquisition targets coming to market. Organic cross-sales of our value broadband to existing customers have been very encouraging. As such, the prospects for significant growth in EBITDA in the coming year are very good."
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