ICT and resources group RM posted a rise in half year profit despite revenues suffering an anticipated decline as the group transforms its Education Technology business.
Revenue for the period totalled £92.1m (2013: £118.8m), reflecting growth of 3% in Assessment and Data Services, an increase of 11.3% in Education Resources, and a 36.2% decline in Education Technology.
The reshaping of the division has so far progressed well, while the other two divisions continue to grow organically and maintain good margins, RM said.
Profit totalled £6.7m, up from £4.6m a year earlier, while diluted earnings per share increased from 3.6p to 5.9p.
Chief Executive David Brooks said: "We are pleased to report a solid set of results for the first half. We are particularly encouraged by the double digit top-line growth in Education Resources for both UK and exports, while maintaining good margins in this business.
"The reshaping of the largest division, Education Technology, continues with the discontinuing of hardware device manufacturing and the end of the stand-alone sale of personal computer devices progressing well.
"As headlined previously, refocusing this business on software and services will take time with the trend towards devolved procurement at a school level and the expiry of BSF contracts. Assessment and Data Services continues to grow organically and maintain strong margins."
The group's trading performance in the second half is expected to be similar to that in the first.
The interim dividend was increased by 14.3% from 0.84p to 0.96p per share.
Full year profit took a hit at Security Research Group after revenue came in at around a third of the level seen during the previous year due largely to the completion of a major contract.
Group pre-tax profit in the 12 months ended March 31st 2014 totalled £1.74m (2013: £4.98m) on revenue of £9.1m (2013: £29.36m), which it said reflected the completion of the £50m Ministry of Defence (MoD) contract and the sea change in global markets for IED detection equipment, which was responsible for a large proportion of the profits in the previous year.
In the Specialist Electronics division, which dealt with the MoD contract, the firm is now improving its existing range of products while at the same time working on a whole new assortment of completely new products aimed at the commercial market. Profit for the 12 months dropped from £6.77m to £0.03m on revenue of £2.76m (2013: £32.57m).
Turnover from the Property Information Services division rose from £4.23m to £4.69m, with operating profit jumping from £0.15m to £0.84m, which it said was driven by its technology platform.
"The recovering housing market, coupled with recent improvements to systems and contracts, means that the business is now set for a sustained period of growth," the group predicted.
"Housing transactions are still 31% below their long-term average, and 38% off peak. With low central costs and rapidly growing revenues, profits will grow exponentially as house sales return to normal levels."
Revenue and operating profit from the Packaging Solutions business were more or less flat, as it maintained the level of performance seen the prior year.