RM has hailed "good progress" in parts of its business as it reports a small sales slump in H1, against the backdrop of a "subdued" education market.
For the six months to 31 May, sales across the RM business fell 1.4 per cent annually to £76.6m, while operating profit rose 2.9 per cent over the same period to £7.1m.
RM Education, the largest section of the group, saw sales fall 6.4 per cent annually – the biggest drop of all three sections – to £34.2m, while RM Resources, which consists of TTS, a direct marketing business which provides educational resources in the UK and globally, posted a 1.4 per cent sales decline to £29.3m. E-assessments division RM Results was the star performer, seeing sales rocket 23.6 per cent annually to £13.2m.
RM CEO David Brooks said: "Despite a subdued UK education market, our balance sheet remains strong and we are confident of meeting expectations for the full year."
Although RM Education saw sales fall annually, thanks to its continued efforts to move away from legacy business, the firm said the slump marks a "significant slowdown in the revenue decline experienced in this division compared with previous years".
"The decline was experienced on the back of the government's Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme stopping and the change of strategy away from making and selling PC client devices," the firm said.
"Good progress was made in the half-year in relation to pursuing the division's priority areas in software and services. In particular, we extended or renewed all long-term managed service contracts that ended in the period including those previously under the BSF programme."
In its most recent full-year results, released in February, RM noted that buying decisions in schools is increasingly being transferred to academies, and said as a result, certain areas of the firm will focus on winning business in this market segment.
Analyst TechMarketView pointed out that there was no mention of the academies plans in its most recent half-year update.
"It is clear that the education market, particularly in the UK, remains a tough environment for the likes of RM," said TechMarketView analyst Georgina O'Toole.
"And while in the FY results, RM appeared positive that 2016 would see a boost for RM Education, as academies looked to SITS [software and IT services] providers to support their ICT requirements, there is no mention of the academies programme in this set of results."
MSP plans to use new acquisition to expand its security offerings
Reseller also saw its operating profit fall five per cent in its financial 2017
Wendy Bahr to bring 18-year spell at networking giant to an end
AdEPT says latest purchase will push revenue beyond £50m