In 2019, we delivered a strong performance and maintained our excellent multi-year momentum.
We continued to progress well strategically, including executing our cloud strategy at pace. And as we grow organically and through acquisition, we continue to out-perform the market.
During the year, we added nearly 400 colleagues, invested 20% of revenues into software development and acquired five great software businesses. Once again, we achieved strong employee and customer satisfaction ratings – and won a record number of contracts.
Growing across markets
Our overall revenues for the year increased 14% to £425.6 million, led by organic revenue and contribution growth across our software activities together with expansion in our capability and addressable market. EBITDA* increased to £89.1 million from £77.7 million in 2018.
We performed strongly across major country markets, with UK and Ireland revenues increasing 24% to £327.3 million; driven by good growth across local government, strengthening our digital operations in Northern Ireland and the acquisition of ERS Group.
Building on the strong foundation we have in Australia and New Zealand, our Asia Pacific activities made up approximately 23% of Group revenues. The launch of four new products in the region delivered additional sales opportunities, with further momentum continuing.
It’s an exciting time for innovation. We’ve developed new platforms such as mobile working and digital engagement, we’re using robotic process automation (RPA) to assist with high-volume service requests and during the year we trialled new capabilities such as distributed ledger technology for verifiable voting. We also launched Civica North Star to drive our position as an innovation leader for public services.
Our people and culture
Our strength lies in our people and our distinctive culture. With our deep sector expertise, we build long-term relationships and focus on recruiting, supporting and rewarding great people and maintaining our culture. In 2019, we renewed our Investors in People (IIP) Gold accreditation, supported by strong Glassdoor ratings and were delighted to be included in the Financial Times’ Diversity Leaders list.
With a leading position in a large, growing market, we remain committed to supporting both the needs of customers to improve public services and to achieve above-market growth for the Group.
The growing demand for cloud software and digital solutions and a period of renewed investment expected in UK public services bodes well. Civica is in a strong position to continue momentum and, with the enhancements to our global platform, we expect to drive sustained performance into 2020 and beyond.
* Earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation