Workforce management software firm ClickSoftware Technologies expects annual sales growth to surpass 20 percent in coming years and profit to improve on new mobility and cloud computing products.
As the recovery in the world economy continues I believe ClickSoftware will continue to grow and estimate the growth rate will be even faster in the next few years, Moshe BenBassat, chairman and CEO of the U.S.-Israeli company, told Reuters.
A growth rate of above 20 percent is very realistic. We are already the world leader in our space (and) barriers to entry for competition are high.
ClickSoftware, whose share hit a new high of $9.58 last month before slipping to $8.08, plans to hire about 50 workers, mainly in sales and marketing, to reach 360 by year-end.
BenBassat forecast revenue in 2011 will rise by 15-20 percent to $81.5-$85 million. He expects profitability to improve after earnings fell in 2010, partly due to the bankruptcy of a customer in Europe.
We definitely see profit growing, BenBassat said. We feel comfortable with analysts' estimates that operating profit will reach 15-19 percent of revenue in 2011.
ClickSoftware's products helps service companies manage their field technicians by designing travel routes and prioritizing customers.
Everyone has experienced a situation where they are waiting at home for hours for the cable guy to come, BenBassat said. We introduced the concept of service chain optimization.
Utility customers, which account for 40 percent of revenue, include Thames Water and Scottish Water in the UK, and PG&E, Southern California Edison and Sempra Energy in the United States. Telecom customers, accounting for 35 percent of activity, include Bell Canada, Deutsche Telekom and Telstra.
It also has office equipment and technology clients, such as Xerox, Ricoh and HP, as well as retailers like Best Buy.
It is counting on new products for shift scheduling, mobility and cloud computing -- where clients can access ClickSoftware's products on the Internet -- to drive growth in coming years. It is also entering new markets such as public safety and transportation.
Competitors include ViryaNet of Israel, ABB unit Ventyx of Atlanta and Service Power of the UK.
ClickSoftware is studying acquisition opportunities to accelerate growth and entering emerging markets such as India and Latin America.
(Editing by David Cowell)