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Business & Economy

Vianet Group “in good shape” as technology demand fuels progress

A data monitoring firm is in “good shape to deliver strong earnings growth and expand its future strategic options” following a strong start to its financial year.

James Dickson, chairman at Vianet Group, says the business is experiencing good demand in the UK, Europe and US as more customers turn to its services to manage data gathering and utilise cloud-based contactless payment solutions.

The company, based in Stockton, is known for helping companies gain greater insight into apparatus, such as vending machines, and their need for maintenance via the Internet of Things, which connects devices in everyday objects by allowing data to be sent and received.

It includes the Smart Machines and Smart Zones divisions, with the latter known for services such as iDraught, which was developed to scrutinise beer volume and flow to reduce waste.

Speaking at the firm’s AGM today (Wednesday, June 26), James will say: “The good momentum experienced last year has continued into the new financial year, with the group’s trading in the first two months being slightly ahead of the board’s expectations.

“Positive results are coming from our focus on strong growth opportunities in the Smart Machines division, while delivering technology upgrades for customers of Smart Zones.

“Smart Machines’ leading end-to-end product suite and established presence continues to create strong growth opportunities across the UK and Europe, with further contracts won in the past months.

“The group is making further sales investment in Smart Machines, with an extra focus on developing our capability and accelerating growth from our leading position in coffee device and contactless payment connectivity where sales progress continues.

“Building on the momentum from several major customer technology upgrade programmes, the Smart Zones division is currently trading marginally ahead of last year, as the group manages performance back towards growth while advancing prospects both in the UK pub market and significant US hospitality market.”