SMS on staff and skills recruitment drive

SMS on staff and skills recruitment drive

ASX-listed services player announces 9 per cent rise in half-year net profits to $13.3m

ASX-listed services player, SMS Management and Technology (ASX: SMX), is looking to bolster its employee headcount to take advantage of a stronger market.

In an ASX statement, the company announced pre-tax profits in the six months to December 31, 2009 had lifted 8 per cent to $17.7 million. Net profits rose 9 per cent to $13.3m. The results were off half-year revenue of $117.1m, a drop of just over 3 per cent.

CEO, Tom Stianos, said returning optimism and opportunity would see SMS switch its focus from defence to growth this year. He also cited a rise in demand for its services offerings.

A key prong to SMS’s forward-looking strategy is to increase headcount. The company has restarted its 457 Visa program in a bid to attract skilled employees from the UK to fulfil jobs from this month.

“We have accelerated our recruitment effort and will be increasing the size of our recruitment team,” Stianos said. “We are also strengthening our sales function across all practices. While demand is excellent, we expect a skills shortage to emerge and therefore the next 12 months’ performance will be influenced by the effectiveness of our recruitment, retention and talent development abilities.”

Stianos also flagged plans to acquire companies to broaden its practice areas. Over the past year, SMS increased its cash reserves from $20.1m to $28.6m.

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