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Kainos reveals big increase in half-year sales to over £67m

Northern Ireland IT consulting and software company Kainos plc has reported a 61% jump in revenues to £67.2m in interim half-year results.

There was also a 28% increase in pre-tax profits to £8.7m in the six months to the end of September 2018, compared to £6.8m for the same period a year earlier.

The Belfast-based company, which is listed on the main London Stock Exchange, said it had been an "exceptionally strong" six-month performance.

One of the company's main customers is the UK government, with Kainos providing systems for the processing of high-volume applications for documents such as passports.

Its workforce had also increased by 30% to reach 1,324.

Chief executive Brendan Mooney said he was happy with the company's strong performance.

But he added: "While we are very pleased we are probably even more excited about the future."

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He said the company was focused in "work digitisation" in the public sector in the UK, while demand for its Workday product was also growing in the UK, US and Canada.

And it is soon to launch a new product for NHS England which will allow patients to access their medical information on their phones or tablets.

"It's going to allow you to renew prescriptions online and it includes a proper symptom checker," said Mr Mooney.

"It will also allow you to express organ donation preference and it's about putting medical treatment into the hands of patients."

He said the roll-out for the service is to begin after Christmas, when it will be available to nine million patients. It will be able to cope with 36 million prescription renewals a year, as well as facilitating 12 million appointments.

He said that while patients will still receive the same level of personal care from GPs in appointments, organisation will be done in a more efficient manner.

Mr Mooney explained that Kainos already handles 24 million MOT appointments a year and 4.5 million passport applications through the other systems they provide for government.

But he said the company did not expect an impact from Brexit. "What we are dealing with are GP appointments, passport applications, collecting tax in Wales and court cases in Scotland.

"I think it's a political question and businesspeople also have an opinion. I'm not in favour of Brexit and we all want a degree of certainty. The longer that uncertainty goes on, the worse it is."

He added that he hadn't read all 585 pages of the draft withdrawal agreement but said "business opinions should be listened to".