Outlook clears for hospital software firm Craneware

LONDON Tue Sep 4, 2012 5:32am EDT

LONDON (Reuters) - London-listed Craneware (CRW.L) said increased budget scrutiny was boosting demand for its software products that help manage spending at U.S. hospitals, improving the company's sales visibility.

Chief Executive Keith Neilson said the group had delivered solid growth against the backdrop of the introduction of electronic health records, which caused some disruption in the first half.

But he said revenue visibility had now returned to historical high levels, helped by a stable political and regulatory outlook.

"Despite it being an election year, there has been bipartisan support for moving for greater transparency and visibility in the healthcare system," he said.

"The underlying theme of transparency is definitely the driver; people want to understand what's being spent and where on healthcare."

Edinburgh-based Craneware supplies software that helps hospitals manage finances surrounding patient care services and supplies. A quarter of U.S. hospitals use its software, the company said.

The company posted a 16 percent rise in adjusted pretax profit to $10.8 million on revenue up 8 percent to $41.1 million for the year to end-June.

The group's shares rose 6.8 percent to 352 pence, as Peel Hunt analyst Paul Morland said the results were in line to ahead on most metrics.

"Crucially, visibility on the new year was back at a more normal 80 percent, from 60 percent at this time last year," he said.

"This can now kick-start a rating recovery, as underlying demand in U.S. healthcare remains firm and Craneware has the right products to address market needs."

(Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)

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