ICT acquires Esprit Management & IT Services

ICT Group N.V. (ICT) has acquired 100% of the shares of Esprit Management & IT Services B.V. (Esprit). Esprit was founded in 1999 and is active in technical software development and recruitment services in the technical automation domain. It employs over 20 professionals and generates annual turnover of around € 2 million.

After an initial integration period Esprit and Additude Netherlands, the Dutch branch of the Swedish company Additude acquired by ICT in 2019, will be merged. The strong reputation of Additude in recruitment services combines perfectly with the excellent position of Esprit in recruitment and consulting services in technical software development. Their combined offering will broaden ICT’s services to its clients and also open up an additional part of the labor market for ICT. Marc Reijnen, founder of Esprit, will lead the integration and further development of this new combination within ICT.

Jos Blejie, CEO of ICT: “I am pleased with Esprit becoming part of ICT. Esprit has a strong and consistent track record within the industrial automation sector and embedded software development in the Netherlands, offering both synergies as well as complementary services to ICT. We welcome Esprit to the ICT Group and to become part of the ambition to lead the ongoing digitalisation for our clients.”

ICT Group convenes extraordinary meeting of shareholders

ICT Group N.V. (ICT) today published the convocation for its Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders (EGM) that will be held via a live video-webcast on Thursday 20 August 2020. The key agenda item is the proposal to appoint Janneke Niessen
(1977, Dutch nationality) as member of the Supervisory Board.

The EGM will be organized in the same manner as the recent AGM, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and following the Emergency-Act. The EGM will only be electronically accessible for shareholders via a live video-webcast. Shareholders can vote through an electronic proxy and have the opportunity to submit questions to ICT prior to the EGM at bava2020@ict.nl.

ICT Group nominates Janneke Niessen for appointment to Supervisory Board

ICT Group N.V. (ICT) today announces the nomination of Mrs. Janneke Niessen for appointment as member of the Supervisory Board of ICT Group. Her nomination made by the Supervisory Board will be on the agenda of an Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders to be held on 20 August 2020. The convocation for this meeting will be published shortly.

Janneke Niessen (1977, Dutch nationality) is a serial entrepreneur and investor. In the past she has started and exited 2 international tech companies. She is co-initiator of InspiringFifty, an initiative that aims to increase diversity in tech by making female role models more visible. Mrs. Niessen furthermore holds supervisory and advisory board positions at various organisations, including Codam and FutureNL.

Theo van der Raadt, chairman of the Supervisory Board of ICT Group: “We are very pleased with the nomination of Janneke Niessen as member of the Supervisory Board of ICT Group. Her broad and extensive experience as an entrepreneur and investor in sectors related to digitalisation and Industry 4.0 as well as her involvement with many start-ups, both as mentor and investor, will be highly valuable to the company.”

This press release contains information that qualifies as inside information within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the EU Market Abuse Regulation.

ICT provides business update

ICT Group N.V. (“ICT”) will update its shareholders on business developments in its AGM, which will be held via audio webcast today.

As indicated in its Q1 results press release, the impact of COVID-19 was still rather limited in the first quarter of 2020, since the lockdown measures took effect in the 2nd half of March. The impact is therefore more significant in the second quarter. The diversification in revenue portfolio and mix in industry sectors is supporting ICT’s business resilience. The activities in Bulgaria and in sectors including public infrastructure and high-tech are hardly impacted by COVID-19, while the time hire services in the industrial automation industry sector are in particularly impacted. As a result, ICT Group’s productivity levels faced a decline of approximately 5% in Q2 to date compared to Q1 2020.

ICT is taking multiple measures to cut and control costs and to preserve cash, including the decision to propose to retain all 2019 earnings to today’s AGM. ICT did not apply for governmental support (NOW – 1) in the Netherlands.

Management is confident that ICT is well positioned to return to its pre-COVID-19 performance levels as soon as current challenging economic circumstances improve. Long term market perspectives remain attractive as we continue to believe in the ongoing digital transformation in all the markets we operate in.

ICT convenes Annual General Meeting

AGM only electronically accessible for shareholders

ICT Group N.V. (“ICT”) today published the convocation and related documents for its Annual General Meeting of Shareholders (AGM) that will be held on Wednesday 24 June 2020.

In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, ICT is doing everything possible to keep its shareholders, employees and other stakeholders safe. This includes avoiding unnecessary travel and large gatherings. The Supervisory Board has therefore decided, following the Temporary Act COVID-19 Justice and Safety (the “Emergency-Act”), that the AGM will only be electronically accessible for shareholders via a live video-webcast. Shareholders can vote through an electronic proxy and have the opportunity to submit questions to ICT prior to the AGM at ava2020@ict.eu.

On the Company’s website you will find further information with regard to registration and instructions about how to submit votes or questions prior to the AGM. In addition all documents, including the agenda, an explanation of the agenda items as well as the accompanying documents and the 2019 Annual Report are available on the website.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation in relation to COVID-19 measures and will inform shareholders through the Company’s website if any changes regarding the AGM occur.

Revenue growth of 6%; COVID-19 impact limited in Q1

Highlights Q1 2020

  • Revenue in Q1 2020 up 6% to € 41.6 million (Q1 2019: € 39.4 million), organically flat
  • EBITDA decreased 7% to € 4.5 million (Q1 2019: € 4.8 million) due to lower productivity levels
  • COVID-19 impact was limited in Q1, effects will be more significant as of April.
    Due to the uncertainty of the extent and duration of the crisis, the full year impact cannot be estimated yet
  • Multiple precautionary measures taken to cut costs and to preserve cash
  • Decision not to distribute 2019 dividend

Key figures

(in € millions) Q1 2020 Q1 2019 Δ
Revenue 41.6 39.4 6%
EBITDA 4.5 4.8 -7%

.

Jos Blejie, CEO of ICT Group N.V.:
“After a weak fourth quarter last year we saw productivity levels slowly but steadily improving over the first quarter of 2020, on balance resulting in organic revenue coming in at the same level as the first quarter last year. Obviously, COVID-19 is having an unprecedented impact on economic activities since mid-February, also in some of the markets ICT is operating in. The impact on the performance of ICT was still rather limited in the first quarter of 2020. Around 95% of our activities for our clients can be done remotely.

Nevertheless we anticipate that the impact will deepen the longer the lockdown measures continue. Although our order portfolio is currently well filled and we benefit from being well-diversified in both activities and exposure to various sectors, we notice a slowdown in order intake. Therefore we expect that it will become more challenging to sustain performance levels at the level of the first quarter. Particularly secondment services will be affected. Our projects in R&D Engineering and vital infrastructures are less sensitive to a sudden economic downturn, but might follow suit if the economic uncertainty persists.

We remain confident that we are well positioned to benefit when economic activity rebounds. Our measures are geared at increasing our business agility, whilst working to retain our professional workforce. This will allow us to weather the current crisis, and remain well positioned to benefit quickly when business activities return to normal levels.”

Financial developments

In the first quarter of 2020 revenue increased by 6% to € 41.6 million from € 39.4 million in the same period last year. This increase is attributable to the acquisitions of Additude (consolidated as of February 2019), BNV Mobility (consolidated as of April 2019) and Proficium (consolidated as of November 2019). Organically, revenue was at the same level as Q1 last year.

EBITDA decreased 7% to € 4.5 million in the first quarter of 2020 compared to € 4.8 million in the same period in 2019. This decrease is fully attributable to the lower productivity levels that, despite an improving trend throughout the quarter, are still lower for the full quarter compared with the same period last year.

The EBITDA margin came in at 10.9% (Q1 2019: 12.3%).

At ICT Netherlands the productivity levels, although improving, were lower than the strong performance in this segment in Q1 last year. The impact from COVID-19 was especially noticeable in the sectors Machines & Systems and Logistics & Transport. In the public domain of Infra & Mobility performance is stable. The productivity in the healthcare activities has slightly improved.

The nearshoring activities in Bulgaria performed well with increased revenues. The productivity levels of the Swedish activities are still lower than anticipated, although representing an improvement compared to the fourth quarter 2019.

In the segment ‘Other’, Improve has been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak as the market for trainings has stalled. OrangeNXT performed in line with expectations, despite the difficulty to gain new sales orders in the current environment.

COVID-19 measures

ICT anticipates that the impact from COVID-19 will deepen the longer the lockdown measures persist. Therefore ICT is taking necessary measures to cut and control costs, and remaining focused on cash management. ICT has proactively reached out to its financing banks to discuss extension of its loans and to postpone redemption schedules. ICT will also consider opting for the various governmental business support measures as and when necessary.

In view of the necessary prudence, ICT has decided to withdraw its intended 2019 dividend proposal and to propose to the AGM to retain all earnings.

ICT offers support for the obstetric care of pregnant women with a medical risk. ICT Healthcare has decided to make its product Sense4Baby, a portable and wireless system for pregnancy monitoring at home, available free of charge during the Corona crisis.

Outlook

Given the uncertainty about the length and depth of the virus outbreak and its impact on the global economy, we refrain from giving an outlook for 2020. We continue to believe in the ongoing digital transformation in all the markets we operate in. We remain fully committed to deliver on our mid-term objective of increasing annual revenue to between € 200 and € 230 million, with a targeted EBITDA margin between 13% and 15%. However, the timelines for achieving these objectives could be impacted by the current crisis.

ICT awarded silver medal for corporate responsibility

ICT Group N.V. (ICT) is proud to announce that they received the silver medal level of achievement for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) from EcoVadis, a leading Sustainability assessor.

With this result ICT is in the top 12% of companies assessed by EcoVadis in the Computer programming, consultancy and related activities industry. We were able to score a balanced score in all four topics: Environment, labor & human rights, sustainable procurement and ethics.

EcoVadis_score ICT Group

“Sustainability assessments like EcoVadis require that companies continuously improve their achievements, because the bar is constantly raised in terms of societal expectations” states Roy Jansen, COO of ICT. “We will continuously strengthen our sustainability programs in 2020 and beyond.”

ICT Group is awarded a new framework agreement with E.ON Sverige AB

Additude, an ICT Group Company, is proud to announce the strengthening of their cooperation with E.ON Sverige AB through a new framework agreement regarding IT consultants and Work packages. This agreement is valid for two years and applies for operations both in Sweden and abroad.

Additude was founded in 2009 and is a local entrepreneur-driven IT and engineering company, as wells a part of ICT Group, focusing on smarter Industries, Smarter cities and Smarter healthcare. Additude has had an annual average growth that by a wide margin exceeds the industry average. The ICT Group is active in Sweden, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Bulgaria with 1450 colleagues globally. For more information: Sam Aston, CEO Additude Group +46 733-77 61 60 or Jim Roslund, VP Sales Additude Group +46 703-79 17 23.

ICT Group gaat de besturing lokale functies Blankenburgverbinding ontwikkelen

BAAK, het bouwconsortium dat in opdracht van Rijkswaterstaat de nieuwe Blankenburgverbinding gaat aanleggen, heeft voor de implementatie van de besturing van lokale functies binnen de tunnels de hulp van ICT Group (ICT) ingeroepen. Het gaat om de hardware, software en tooling voor de besturing van verschillende functies, zoals de brandblusvoorziening, ventilatoren en het overdruksysteem.

Na aanbesteding koos het bouwconsortium voor ICT. “Ze bleken het meest onder de indruk te zijn van onze aanpak”, vertelt Menno Kamminga, Business Development Manager Infrastructuur bij ICT, trots. “Wij werken volgens de landelijke tunnelstandaard van Rijkswaterstaat, hebben ervaring in de bediening van lokale functies binnen tunnels en ontwikkelen en testen volgens een systeem waarbij de aantoonbaarheid dat de software doet wat het moet doen essentieel is. Dat gaf ons een voorsprong ten opzichte van de andere offertes.”

Acht sprints

Maar dat is niet de enige reden dat de keuze op ICT is gevallen. “We hebben in onze voorstellen goed uitgewerkt hoe we onze software gaan integreren met het 3B-systeem dat op hetzelfde moment wordt ontwikkeld; het systeem voor bediening, bewaking en besturing dat door medewerkers van Rijkswaterstaat wordt gebruikt. Zij kunnen via dit systeem op afstand slagbomen sluiten of de verlichting aanpassen. Voordat ICT een sprint oplevert aan BAAK wordt een eerste integratietest gehouden met de coördinerende besturingslaag en de veldapparatuur. Op deze wijze wordt ervoor gezorgd dat eventuele integratieproblemen vroegtijdig worden onderkend en opgelost. Een goede samenwerking met de andere leveranciers in de keten was voor BAAK essentieel en een belangrijk criterium voor het gunnen van de opdracht. Door Agile samen te werken kunnen wij het systeem in acht sprints opleveren.”

Foutloos programmeren

Als laatste scoorde ICT ook goed op de inzet van een codegenerator, een tool die standaardinformatie vertaalt naar codes. “Als meerdere mensen aan een project werken, kunnen programmeerverschillen ontstaan. Met deze tool genereer je code die foutloos is”, aldus Martijn Schram, Business Unit Manager Water & Infra. “Bijkomend voordeel is dat de bouwstenen die worden opgeleverd voor de Blankenburgtunnel, hiermee ook eenvoudig aan te passen zijn voor gebruik in andere, vergelijkbare projecten.”

Planning

De nieuwe Blankenburgverbinding gaat onder de Nieuwe Waterweg door en verbindt Rozenburg met Vlaardingen. De planning is dat de nieuwe verbinding in 2024 opengaat. “De software en hardware van het lokale bedieningsplatform moet over een jaar gereed zijn. Hiermee is dus de nieuwe software ruim voor de civiel afronding van de tunnels gereed”, aldus Kamminga.

Regie

ICT heeft tijdens de selectie alle vrijheid gekregen. “BAAK heeft ons als experts aangesproken en gevraagd om onze input.” Waar Kamminga vooral content mee is, is dat ICT in dit project de verantwoordelijkheid heeft over zowel de hardware als de software van het lokale besturingsplatform. “Dat maakt een project beter beheersbaar, we hebben het heft zelf in handen.”

Mediabron: www.blankenburgverbinding.nl