Purple Group announces great results

Purple Group has posted excellent results for the year ended 31 August 2018. Through a lot of hard work, clever thinking and pencil sharpening, the group and its brands – GT247.com, EasyEquities, RISE and Emperor Asset Management – managed to cut its attributable losses for the year by an impressive 54%.

The group also won tons of awards all around the world during the financial year in question.

One of the biggest highlights has been the turnaround in one year of GT247.com, which reported a 141% gross profit. This was achieved thanks to the team’s passion and relationships, smart ideas, taking calculated risks, and believing in themselves.
EasyEquities is a relatively new businesses. As we all know, fintech start-ups take time and a lot of investment before turning a profit. This is especially tough in listed environments, where investors are looking for short term gains.

“We are extremely proud to be a partner of Purple Group,” says CN&CO’s Carel Nolte. “We are such an integral part of the team that their success feels like our success! Congratulations to everyone who played a role in these fantastic financial results.”

Since Purple Group is a listed company, anyone can buy in and become a shareholder. And using the group’s EasyEquities platform makes an investment in this stock (JSE:PPE) really, really easy (as the name suggests).

Here’s the media release that was issued along with the group’s annual report. You can download an executive summary of the report here.

Purple Group, Ltd. (JSE: PPE) announced the financial results on Friday, 30 November 2018 for its year end 31 August 2018.

Purple Group significantly reduced attributable losses for the year ending 31st August 2018 from R57.9M (2017) down to R26.7M (-54%); this is an encouraging set of results. Purple is proving to be a highly focused fintech group; disrupting the investment industry by leveraging its success, lessons learnt and world-class platform capability in EasyEquities.  

These results were underpinned by strong cost containment across the group with operating expenses up just 2.7%. High levels of investment into EasyEquities have continued, delivering another year of exponential growth across all key performance metrics with revenue increasing by 68%; platform assets up 144%; and a 77% increase in funded accounts. A returning focus on GT247.com saw it report a healthy turnaround, posting moderate trading revenue growth (+13.9%) and a significantly improved profit before tax of R10.2M (+141%).

“The Purple Group is rapidly achieving the scale required to deliver healthy returns to patient stakeholders in the years ahead,” says Charles Savage, CEO of the Purple Group. “Our ambitious target, set four years ago, of 100 000 invested accounts across the group is now well within our sights. It’s also encouraging to see that the growth we are experiencing in EasyEquities is lifting client numbers across group companies. Powerful partnerships like those we have forged with Satrix, Sanlam, and more recently NBC Fund Administrators and Bidvest Bank, are augmenting our results; opening new market opportunities and extending our reach to every corner of South Africa. This ensures that the exponential outcomes achieved can be confidently delivered into the future.

“And we’re just getting started. An ever-growing library of global awards and increasing partnership opportunities, both locally and abroad, continue to give credence to our success – having won everything from Best Fintech, Best Startup, Most Innovative Business and Top Online Stockbroker. We continue to rapidly grow our retail customer base and can now also include large institutions as our valued clients. Our clients are choosing us because of the difference we are making in changing their financial lives; enabling them through our innovative, fractional, low cost, transparent, frictionless, #Easy approach to all things investing. In many instances this means joining us as shareholders and sharing our deep desire and purpose to democratise all things investing.”

 Highlights

  • A black empowerment consortium led by Bonang Mohale, CEO of Business Leadership South Africa, invested R25 million. This allowed the group to settle historic borrowing relating to the investment in Real People. The group is privileged to have an enthusiastic investor and participant in the business that in time we hope will be a sizeable broad-based BEE shareholder.
  • EasyEquities recently secured a partnership with the Ecsponent Group with the aim of creating a platform that offers low cost, easy investments to new markets. Says Christine Marincowitz, group head of marketing and communications at Ecsponent, “EasyEquities partnered with the Ecsponent group to deliver a platform capable of enhancing Ecsponent’s service offering to current and future clients – a partnership, which we believe holds many synergies.”

GT247.com

  • Launched the MT5 trading platform, significantly driving down technology costs and delivering a world-class platform experience to clients.
  • Placed fourth in the overall rankings of the annual Intellidex/Investor’s Monthly/Financial Mail Top Stockbroker of the year awards and ranked first in the value for money category alongside EasyEquities.

EasyEquities

  • Raised R100M for growth from Sanlam Investments, an engaged and supportive shareholder who shares our passion and vision to make investing easy for everyone, for a 30% share in the business.
  • Partnered and delivered our full platform capability into the newly launched Bidvest Bank Grow Account ™ – an exciting partnership delivering South Africa’s first digital bank where clients can transact, save and invest from the same account on a single banking platform experience.
  • Launched Thrive, our groundbreaking loyalty program, to drive and shape long-term investor behaviour. Thrive rewards investors with zero brokerage benefits and other lifestyle experiences; entices them to level up their education through our EasyAcademy; build community through our referral and vouchering tools; and stay financially fit by putting their education into practice on the platform.
  • Developed a goal-based investment guide, MrPHY, which is scheduled to launch in December 2018. Built in recognition of the fact that for many, investing is still too daunting. MrPHY matches clients desires, needs and wants with their risk tolerance, time horizon and capital constraints. In the outcome ensuring that their hard-earned money gets invested in the right managed portfolios while keeping them informed and on track every step of the way.
  • Launched a mobile app in January 2018, with total users now at 43 400; subscribed users 31 200; and monthly active users of 15 900. Store rankings as at 27 November 2018:
    • Apple Store ranked 18th in Finance
    • Google Play Store ranked 43rd in Finance
  • Awards and industry recognition received in the past 12 months:
    • 2017
      • Intellidex/Investor’s Monthly/Financial Mail:
        • Top Tax-Free Savings Account Provider – 2017
      • Finance Indaba Africa:
        • Best InvestTech – 2017;
        • Best African FinTech – 2017
      • 2018
        • Intellidex/Investor’s Monthly/Financial Mail:
          • Top Tax-Free Savings Account Provider – 2018;
          • Top Online Broker – 2018
        • Southern Africa Startup Awards:
          • South African Startup of the year – 2018
          • South African FinTech of the year – 2018
          • Southern Africa Startup of the year – 2018
          • Southern Africa FinTech of the year – 2018
        • Singapore Fintech Festival 2018
          • Global FinTech Hackcelerator Finalists – 2018

RISE

  • Launched RISE, a 50/50 joint-venture partnership between EasyEquities and NBC Fund Administration Services, which was developed to disrupt the traditional retirement investment industry with a low cost, transparent, simple, and affordable savings solution. RISE offers a diverse range of passive and active portfolios with unrivalled opportunities for members to save and invest within a single platform experience.
  • RISE has already secured mandates totalling R3Bn in assets; R1Bn of which is included on the platform in these results; the remaining R2Bn will be delivered on the platform in April 2019. Industry feedback on our solution is very encouraging and we have every confidence that RISE will replicate EasyEquities’ success and disruption in this sector of the market too.

Emperor Asset Management

  • Created and launched a broader and enhanced set of investment portfolios designed in-line with, and competitive to, available unit trust offerings. The portfolios offer risk-profiled solutions for income, low risk, moderate risk, balanced risk and more aggressive equity investors. These are all made easily available on the EasyEquities platform as bundles.
  • Partnered EasyEquities in developing the soon to be launched goal-based investment guide, MrPHY, which is powered by our portfolio solutions.

Mandated to provide investment consulting services and asset management to RISE to manage a portion of mandates secured.