Fidessa sees market conditions improving but warns on sterling

Oliver Smith
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TRADING technology firm Fidessa Group yesterday reported improving conditions across its markets due to “reduced head­wind” from fewer consolid­ations, restructurings and closures in its customer base and an improving deal pipeline.

“In particular, increased interest has been seen in new functionality within the core markets, as well as strong demand for the derivatives and service-based offerings,” Fidessa said yesterday in its interim management statement covering 1 July to 6 November.

“As previously reported, due to the depth, longevity and severity of the financial crisis, the improve­ment… is expected to be gradual and this combined with the effect of the recurring revenue model means that modest constant currency growth is expected for the year as a whole.”

Fidessa warned that it expected the “exceptional” strength of sterling during the year to more than offset that and affect its reported numbers.

“Looking further ahead, Fidessa believes that as stability and opportunity return to the markets, the headwind reduction, coupled with further openings as its multi-asset initiative gains momentum, will enable it to return to growth levels closer to those seen in the past,” the company said.

Despite Fidessa’s optimism, analysts remained more critical in their appraisal of the group yesterday.

Panmure Gordon analyst George O’Connor said: “Market participants are living in denial regarding Fidessa. We do not believe in the cyclical return to the good old days. Hold for now, with a target price of 1,589p.”

Fidessa’s shares fell 0.75 per cent yesterday to 2,377p in London.