Yesterday afternoon RS2 Software plc announced its 2010 financial results revealing a significant improvement in profitability and a higher dividend to shareholders. RS2 registered a 27.4% rise in revenue to €7.5 million mainly due to the growth in the number of licences for the use of the Bankworks software. Moreover, service requests by clients increased by 18%. The rise in revenue and the tax credit of just under €1 million were the main drivers behind the significant improvement in profitability to €2.86 million (2009: €1.025 million). Given the rise in profitability and the strong cash generation by the Group, the Directors recommended a net dividend of €0.032 per share, representing a 45.5% increase over last year’s dividend. Shareholders as at the close of trading on Wednesday 27 April will be entitled to this dividend and will also be invited to attend the Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on 14 June. This announcement was well received by the market with an immediate positive reaction to the share price. Fresh demand for RS2 shares helped the equity rally 42.9% to a new 4-month high of €0.50 across thirteen trades totalling over 58,000 shares.
Meanwhile, although minor movements were registered in the share prices of the two large banks, volumes across both equities increased. Bank of Valletta plc closed minimally lower at the €2.90 level on volumes of over 30,000 shares after dropping to a low of €2.89. On the other hand, HSBC Bank Malta plc inched 0.2% higher to regain the €2.96 level on total volumes of 20,100 shares.
Also in the financial sector, Lombard Bank Malta plc closed in negative territory for the second consecutive session with its share price down another 1% to the €2.95 level after trading up to €2.999. On the other hand, Middlesea Insurance plc stabilised at €0.80 as a further 2,433 shares changed hands at this level.
Selling pressure in GO plc persisted today with the share price closing at a 25-month low of €1.45. Two trades amounting to 3,000 shares were executed today. The shares of GO will continue to trade with the entitlement to the final net dividend of €0.05 per share until 4 May.
The other active equity was Malta International Airport plc. MIA’s equity eased by 0.2% this morning to close at the €1.755 level despite yesterday’s announcement of record passenger movements during March. The statistics revealed an increase of 16.4% in passenger movements to an all-time high of 240,360 during March due to record seat capacity. The airport operator registered a rise of 16.5% in passengers during the first quarter of 2011.