The Asteros Group unveiled its 2014 financial results

Jul 14, 2015

Today, the Asteros Group, the Russian market leader in comprehensive infrastructure and security systems, announced its consolidated results for the 2014 financial year. The group’s long-range strategy, geared towards increasing the efficiency of its diversified business, enabled Asteros to retain volumes and display moderate growth amid high volatility and an unfavorable economic situation. Total revenues of the Asteros Group grew by 2% and amounted to 20.1 billion rubles.

Amid a shortage of growth sources, the key business areas of the Asteros Group slowed down compared to the previous years dynamics, but overall the positive trend continued. As such, revenues from engineering and IT infrastructure increased by 1.7%. The IT services segment grew by 6.2% while the IT consulting business area reached a double-digit growth rate of 17.8%. A similar indicator in the field of systems integration reached 6.3%. In general, the share of IT services typically dominated the revenue structure of Asteros and comprised 52.8%, compared to 50.7% in the previous year. The expected changes happened in part of the delivery business according to the volume of revenues from software because Asteros recorded a drop of 17.4%, yet at the same time equipment deliveries increased by 1.5%.

According to results from 2014, the most dynamically developing lines of business in Asteros' industrial structure were construction and real estate, with a growth rate near 160%, and the oil and gas sector (106.6%). Traditionally for Asteros, the largest business areas were banks and financial groups (25.6%), telecommunications (24%), the transportation sector (14.5%) and the public sector (10.4%).

Based on year-end results, the Asteros Groups flagship business area, engineering and IT infrastructure, added several large-scale projects to its portfolio. As an example, the company took part in a project to expand the terminal at Domodedovo airport. Professionals from Asteros successfully completed a range of engineering systems with fully automated management mechanisms for the second segment of the airports passenger terminal with a total area of 240,000 m². The Chief State Expert Evaluation Department of Russia confirmed that the project complies with all state standards and requirements.

Possessing solid expertise in the telecommunications field, Asteros, together with Avaya and MegaFon, completed one of the largest projects in the industry: the virtualization of eight of the mobile operators call centers. The project, which enabled MegaFon to reduce expenses and provide a quick and easy way to connect customers with new services in all regions of the country, received the Avaya Technology Innovation Award 2015. Another important project involved upgrading the Center for Ambulance and Emergency Medical Services «03» in Moscow. The project made it possible to process 600,000 calls per hour-375 times greater than before. It also reduced the amount of time spent waiting for the operator to just 10 seconds.

It was also an exciting year in the field of digital signage as the company designed and deployed a series of multimedia systems, including acoustic equipment, at the N. A. Dollezhal Research and Development Institute of Power Engineering (NIKIET), at PEPSIs headquarters, and also at Tolmachevo airport, where the main work was completed by the Asteros Groups Novosibirsk branch.

The Asteros Groups broad expertise in integrated security and counterterrorism measures enabled it to complete conceptual projects to ensure perimeter defense at the Russian Disneyland- the Sochi Park Amusement Park, and also at a number of air transportation and oil-producing facilities. Besides this, the Asteros team developed a unique concept to provide integrated security for the 84,000 hectare Mamison all-season resort in the North Caucasus federal district.

In the consulting field, the company successfully completed a number of large-scale projects, which included rollout of a platform for managing IT infrastructure and organizing IT services at Gazprom Neft. The new ITSM system is designed to handle 50,000 tickets per month and it is used by about 1200 IT professionals at Gazprom Neft throughout Russia. The self-service portal is available to all of the oil companys nearly 60,000 employees. This project was named Project of the Year in the Fuel and Energy Sector category by Russian IT portal Global CIO.

Another project of Asteros, to upgrade Novolipetsk Steels (NLMK Group) geographically-distributed IT infrastructure and to centralize its IT departments and services numbering over 60,000 employees, won the Management, Virtualization and Server Platform Partner of the Year at the 2014 Microsoft Partner Awards, an international competition of the best IT solutions among Microsofts Russian partners.

Over the past year, several large-scale projects in information security services have been implemented for government institutions, including security agencies, state corporations, leading telecommunications operators, enterprises in the fuel and energy sector, organizations in the banking sector, and major trading companies. These also include the mobile operator MegaFon, its branches and its subsidiary MegaLabs, the Aviadvigatel design bureau and many others.

Furthermore, 2014 brought results in the area of R&D. A pilot project offering passengers an express check-in service was successfully carried out at terminal E of Sheremetyevo International Airport. The service is being implemented on the basis of the Asteros Contact Avia mobile application and enables airport agents to quickly check in passengers anywhere in the terminal using the mobile device. The first results of a project to implement an innovative solution for personalized telemarketing campaigns based on the Asteros Business Contact platform at MegaFons federal center of telemarketing in Novosibirsk are evident. The working efficiency of operators increased by 10% and transferring between calls takes literally 1–2 seconds.

For Asteros, the past year became a year of strengthening business relationships. Asteros holds the status of highest platinum partnership with leading IT and telecommunications vendors such as Avaya, Oracle, Polycom, and NICE. The company is a gold partner of Cisco, HP, SAP, and Panduit, which awarded Asteros the "Golden Jack 2014" award for the largest sales volume. Asteros also received an award from Samsung in the "Best Partners for the Integration of Professional Displays and Monitors" category as part of the Top Partner Awards 2014. Asteros immediately picked up 2 awards from its projects in Olympic Sochi: Extreme Networks called the VIP terminal at Sochi International Airport the years best project in the transportation and aviation sector and the Russian manufacturer Bolid remarked on the integrators services in equipping the Olympic Village with perimeter security systems. Moreover, according to 2014 results, the Asteros Group swiftly received awards in two categories: "Employer of the Year" and "Business Reputation", something which confirms the companys HR strategy and its impeccable reputation on the Russian IT market.

Summing up the 2014 results, Yury Byakov, Chairman of the Board of the Asteros Group, remarked: "Trade restrictions and the associated currency fluctuations brought about serious consequences for the entire IT market; thus, it was impossible for the IT business to remain untouched by the economic slowdown, which was intensified by geopolitical risks. At the beginning of the year, we set ourselves the task of increasing growth dynamics but just a few months later our key task became preserving last years financial indicators and volumes. And Im glad that we were able to cope with the task and regroup in time, keep our relationships with partners, and fulfil our obligations to our clients. I think that, in many respects, 2015 will be a determinant year for market conditions and the future development of the IT business, and those who are ready to reduce costs, react flexibly to new business requirements, and be ready for changes will be successful".

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