CommSoft Looking To Better Days:
Chairman’s And Managing Director’s Comments At AGM
Sydney, 2 November 2001 - At today’s Annual General Meeting in Sydney, CommSoft Group’s Chairman Mr Greg Gardiner
expressed hopes for better days to come and confirmed that the Group was aiming to achieve a break even result for the
He commented, “We believe there are grounds for cautious optimism. As in any business, and particularly in today’s
business climate, there is an element of risk but I can assure all shareholders that the business has never been more
efficient, the management team has never been stronger, the products have never been better, and our sales channels are
quality channels, well chosen and well managed. We have a long way to go but if it’s an issue within our control, we’re
dealing with it.”
In a further announcement Mr Gardiner stated that he was delighted to inform shareholders of the appointment of Mr
Anthony Howard to the Board. “Anthony Howard is an extremely capable operator with extensive experience in the
management of public and private companies, including spells as CEO of Wang New Zealand, which he successfully
restructured and took to an NZSE listing, and CEO of Blue Star, a $300m per annum technology and office products
supplier. He has great experience and credibility and his appointment further strengthens our Board. His desire to work
with us is a further indication that our business is making real progress.” As well as his work at CommSoft, Mr Howard
is currently involved with a number of leading privately held IT companies in New Zealand.
Managing Director Mark Lunt gave a short presentation to shareholders on the Group’s products and structure after recent
changes in the business.
He commented, “Since April we have dramatically reduced our cost base. While we need to focus very hard on keeping costs
under control, the principal emphasis now has to be on boosting sales.”
Mr Lunt outlined the following specific achievements:
- In June CommSoft announced that staffing levels had reduced from around 150 to 80 and the company has continued
carefully to reduce this through natural attrition and staff redeployment. It now employs around 60 people.
- The last three months have seen a significant increase in UK sales activity and collections.
- CommSoft’s revenues are broadly in line with the levels achieved in the past 12 months, but it has less than half the
number of staff.
- Cost saving measures include a move to significantly less expensive premises in Sydney.
- CommSoft has successfully completed a new version of its NetMaster product which has been very well received by
channels and end users.
- CommSoft has made great progress in establishing strong channels in New Zealand and Australia.
- CommSoft’s products save customers time and money, making them ideally suited for the current business climate.
- The company’s prospect list is extremely good, especially in the UK - its largest market.
“Despite last year’s problems, I believe we made the correct decision to focus significant energy on the UK market,
which has tremendous potential for CommSoft’s product family,” said Mr Lunt. “The management changes in the UK have
transformed the attitude and morale of our staff and channels and we expect to get payback on our significant investment
in that market over the next few months. Other territories - South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia - have also
undergone very significant restructuring and are capable of sustained improvement in performance.
“We now have a very strong product set, better management, processes and controls, and some excellent sales
opportunities. We need to focus on closing the many exciting sales opportunities open to us. I am confident our team
will rise to the challenge.”
About CommSoft Group Limited
CommSoft Group Limited is an international leader in the development of niche software products for the
telecommunications industry. CommSoft develops and markets leading edge telecommunications and Customer Relationship
Management software to help all kinds of enterprises make better use of their telecommunications equipment through
better cost management, increased staff productivity and improved customer service.
Its products are bundled with products and services by some of the world's largest telecommunications suppliers.
More information on CommSoft is available at www.commsoftgroup.com