Online identity fraudbusters GB Group rises as it beats forecasts

SHARES in online identity checking firm GB Group jumped yesterday as the company said annual profits will be above market expectations.

The Chester-based company, which sells its software to online banking, gambling and shopping operators, said that operating profit for the 12 months to the end of March will be more than £5.1m after a bumper second half of the year.

This compares against an operating profit of £3.7m in the previous year and implies a healthy pickup in recent trading, since the first six months of the financial year saw operating profit of just £1.5m. GB Group has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the rise of online shopping and banking, as internet businesses require its software to prevent fraud. The company’s technology cross references a user’s data with GB Group’s database of other information.

However, the news that the company’s profits are set to be higher than expected also suggests that a series of acquisitions completed last year, such as that of CRB check firm TMG, has paid off better than expected.

The news cheered the City yesterday, sending the company’s shares up by 3.3 per cent.

GB Group said it would reveal full year results in mid-April.