Computacenter Shares Sink as Third Quarter Sales Edge Lower

Shares of Computacenter (CCC.L), a British information technology services provider, traded sharply lower early on Wednesday after revenues fell in the third quarter and the company forecast that while sales in the fourth quarter will improve sequentially, they won’t match the lofty levels seen in the first half.

Group turnover, which excludes the two acquisitions that the company made in September in The Netherlands and the US, slipped to 900 million pounds ($1.15 billion) during the three months that ended October 31, from 931.9 million pounds a year ago, the company said in a trading statement.

Explaining the “significantly more challenging comparison” in the period under review, the firm noted that it recorded 9% year-on-year growth in sales in the first half of 2017, and a 20% surge in the third quarter of the same year.

In trading terms, Computacenter said Britain saw a 9% slump in revenues due to a drop in sales at its Technology Sourcing division, which on a group level recorded a 5% decline in turnover. In France too, sales slid, chipping away the 13% growth in sales seen at the International segment, the firm, which drew down 100 million pounds from a debt facility in October to fund the purchase of San Francisco-based Fusionstorm, said.

“While the overall growth rates in the third quarter in isolation are subdued compared to recent quarters, the third quarter presented a more challenging comparison,” the company said in a statement. “Our expectation for the fourth quarter is for improved growth before acquisitions but not to the levels seen in the first half of the year.”

The outlook for the group’s full-year results remains in line with the board’s expectations as upgraded on July 12, it said.

Still, shares of the company slumped by 15.9% at the time of writing in London.