Halogen in growth mode, posts Q1 revenue gains

Growth is still the No. 1 priority for Halogen Software, the Ottawa-based firm said late Thursday after posting first-quarter revenue gains.

By Jacob Serebrin

Halogen, which sells talent management software to mid-market customers, said revenue reached a new high during its first quarter of 2014 as the company continued to build up its staff count.

“During the quarter, we continued to demonstrate progress,” CEO Paul Loucks told investors on a conference call on Thursday evening.

Halogen reported revenue of US$13.5 million during the three-month period that ended March 31. That’s up from $11.6 million during the same period last year.

Of that, 89 per cent, or $12.1 million, is recurring – a major focus of the company, whose primary offering is based on a software-as-a-service sales model.

Halogen has a “huge greenfield opportunity” because much of its target market doesn’t use any form of talent management software, Mr. Loucks said, adding the company is “looking to add new customers” and upsell to the ones it already has. To help achieve that goal, the company boosted its sales and marketing headcount by 25 per cent, he said.

“It’s really about building out the infrastructure,” Mr. Loucks said.

The company’s net loss for the quarter dropped from $7.3 million in 2013 to $3 million this year. That was credited to the “elimination of the fair value adjustment to the company's redeemable preferred shares.”

However, Halogen’s first-quarter operating loss increased from $1.2 million last year to $3 million, which the company attributed to higher staff and research and development costs, along with the lower Canadian dollar.

Halogen CFO Pete Low described the loss as “investments we are making now to grow our business both domestically and internationally.”

The company expects to continue to operate at a loss as it remains “focused on building recurring revenue and market share,” he said.

Currently, 79 per cent of Halogen’s revenue comes from the United States, while 11 per cent comes from Canada. Another 10 per cent comes from Australia and the United Kingdom, markets the company is particularly interested in growing.