Stone Computers Limited has described its performance last year as "excellent", as the firm's profits bulge.
For the 12 months to 31 December 2014, EBITDA before exceptional items rose 30.4 per cent to £4.47m on revenue which fell by 3.8 per cent to £74.4m.
The company said in its annual report that 2015 trading to date has been strong.
Stone chief executive Simon Harbridge (pictured) said the company is reaping the rewards of moving towards services.
"Stone Group's drive to offer end-to-end IT services and solutions has meant that our customers can now come to us for the complete package, not just the hardware we have been previously known for," he said. "We are helping schools, colleges, universities and other public sector businesses change the way they think about technology's role in their own transformations.
"Infrastructure, support and managed services contracts now account for over 15 per cent of our overall revenue. Broadening our portfolio with these services has had a big impact on the profitability of the overall business."
In the annual report, Stone said the schools market is growing, which is good news for the company.
"The outlook for the company is currently very positive," the report states. "The economic situation across the UK continues to improve, with the extended replacement cycle for IT hardware in the education sector, initially prompted by the impact of the recession in the public sector in 2010, coming to a natural conclusion.
"According to market surveys, schools are under-resourced in tablets and laptops and there is a growing proportion of computers (approximately 25 per cent) that are considered ineffective for teaching. In addition, it is estimated that the annual number of children entering the school system by 2020 will be over 20 per cent higher than current numbers. Stone is uniquely set up to take advantage of these positive movements in the market."
But the company is susceptible to a number of risks, it admitted. The fast-changing nature of the IT sector in general was first on its list of risks, followed by that posed by changing exchange rates.
Issues surrounding the global supply of components are also on Stone's radar, as well as risks associated with the warranties it offers.
"The company sells the majority of its hardware with up to three years' warranty as standard and up to five years if required," the report said. "This liability is constantly reviewed and mitigated by ensuring the majority of components are supported back to back by the company‘s supply chain. Additionally, the company performs all repairs via its own employed field engineering resource."
Parts of Stone are currently embroiled in a divisive administration process – its former parent company Stone Bidco has been put into administration, but certain shareholders, including former CEO James Bird, are disputing the process in the High Court, claiming they will lose millions of pounds if the company is liquidated.
But Harbridge has told CRN the administration process is panning out according to documents signed by all investors during the 2008 MBO. He has been keen to stress throughout the process that Stone Computers Limited – which deals with customers, suppliers and staff – remains unaffected and is successful.
Chief exec Jens Montanana claims Logicalis performed well despite 'currency headwinds'
All the photos from last night's event, which saw over 600 people congregate at the Hilton London Bankside
Five year deal with Essex NHS Trust will cover 400 sites, including hospitals, clinics and GP practices
18 individuals and three companies walked away as winners at CRN's inaugural Women in Channel Awards last night