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Highams Interim Results

Highams Systems Services Group plc the AIM-quoted IT recruitment consultancy and a leading niche provider of technology talent to the financial services industry announces its interim results for the six months ended 30 September 2008.

Highlights include revenue of 5.66m (2007: 7.06m) and Gross margin improved by 22% from 14.5% to 17.7%. The companys losses before tax continued to narrow to 260,000 (2007: loss 495,000) partly reflecting some of the changes announced in the Group's year end results.
New Chairman Ken Ford, said As announced at the time of our preliminary results, we have received an investment of cash generated through the placing of new shares, raising 650,000 (before associated costs). The Board changes along with other cost savings made, have had a significant impact on the business this financial year and we should begin to see the financial benefits of these savings in the second half of this year. These savings, along with the placing of new shares, have resulted in the balance sheet being stabilised from October.

Financials

With Group turnover of 5.66 million (2007: 7.06 million), and with gross profit slightly down at 1.004 million (2007: 1.025 million), we did see however a pleasing rise in our gross margin, which improved to 17.73% of turnover (2007: 14.51%). The operating loss before interest and tax narrowed to 227,000 (2007: loss 455,000) and this progress reflects some of the changes we have made, as announced in the Group's year end results. The exceptional item of 37,000 related to the cost of the Board restructuring.

The Company will not be declaring an interim dividend.

Outlook and Summary

During the period, we have executed significant cost reductions across the group and we are starting to see some of the measures we have introduced begin to bear fruit. Post period end, we are mindful that there is still much hard work needed as far as our sales performance is concerned and we fully recognise the need to focus on sales and delivery, whilst continuing to rigorously monitor all costs.

Whilst the economic climate continues to be unstable, we do remain cautiously confident in our ability to turnaround our business. We continue to focus our efforts on providing a high quality service and look forward to updating our shareholders on continued progress as we go forward.

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