In the first half of 2023, Fort focused on strengthening its team of industry experts and growing and diversifying its revenue streams to ensure the company’s long-term growth strategy. All of this was reflected in H1 2023 on expenses related to cybersecurity project delivery processes:
- 8,839,637 ron revenue, 11% more than in H1 2022
- an operating profit of 1,263,424 RON
- expenses related to sales increased by 43%, due to the strengthening of the expert team and the increase in the volume of equipment and resold licenses
During the first half of the year, Fort continued its process of growth and diversification of the services offered to customers. A significant new addition to our portfolio is the completion of the steps towards the creation of a Security Operations Centre (SOC). This service enables real-time analysis of security alerts generated by our customers’ infrastructure. Through this center, we ensure fast and efficient management of potential cyber security incidents. The product was developed as a result of our practical experience in identifying security vulnerabilities (pentesting) and managing security incidents. It comes as an additional and objective layer in managing the attack surface of our customers’ infrastructure.
We plan to start by offering it to existing customers, whose needs we know very well. We have already started the first discussions and negotiations in this regard and we are happy to announce that we have successfully completed the POC (Proof of Concept) and demonstrated the feasibility and coherence of our solution.
A very important element to mention is the signing of the first contract for the delivery of cybersecurity services in a “managed security services” regime. Through this type of collaboration, Fort purchases the licenses and security equipment required for the project and offers them as a service to the end customer, “bundled” with its own installation, configuration and maintenance activities – in the form of a monthly subscription. This contract has a duration of 36 months and represents a significant step in increasing the share of recurring revenue in the company’s turnover.
International expansion continues to be a central element of our development strategy. In the first half of the year, we organised more than 20 meetings to present FORT services to companies outside Romania, two of which generated concrete opportunities for collaboration. Our efforts in this direction will continue in the second half of the year, with the assessment of expansion opportunities in both the United States and South East Asia.
In the first six months, we signed collaborations with 5 new customers, who chose to entrust FORT with multiple operational aspects related to cybersecurity.
The partnership with KnowBe4 has evolved naturally as a complement to the services we provide, with a focus on improving the IT governance maturity of our clients. This collaboration allows us to add an extra layer of control to the awareness training process that our partners have implemented. In this context, we have initiated promotional campaigns in collaboration with KnowBe4, to increase awareness of the benefits that can be obtained by using the service. We can confirm that we have a stream of interested potential customers with whom we have already started detailed discussions on the implementation of this solution. The mentioned prospects are mainly medium and large companies in Romania.
At the same time, innovation remains a key focus for the company.
In 2022, we initiated a project co-financed by European Funds, called InsureAI. This project aims to develop and implement an innovative solution based on artificial intelligence in the insurance sector. Even though cybersecurity is only a tangential component in this project, FORT’s involvement was made possible by the long-term collaborations the company has had in the insurance industry. The end result of this project will be our company’s intellectual property and the culmination of over 8 years of experience in the insurance industry. The project is of particular importance in terms of optimizing the analysis and settlement processes for automotive damages. The solution developed as part of the project will provide users with the ability to automatically identify damaged elements of a vehicle and generate forecasts of estimated repair costs.
In H1 a first version of the full prediction algorithms that will be used in the final version of the application was released. The tests performed on the developed functionalities indicated a degree of accuracy that allows the use of the solution, but needs further improvements. In the next period, we will complete the research process and move on to the creation of the final software product.
The financial impact of the project in the first 6 months of this year is – 319,272 RON, and we maintain our target of -850,000 RON until the end of the year. The goal is for this project to generate revenues of 250,000 RON in 2024. The particular specificity of our company’s activity, namely in the field of services and without financial debt, ensures that we convert the overwhelming proportion of operating profit into net profit, which can also be translated into the premise of providing dividends to shareholders.
The availability of human resources continues to be the biggest brake on our accelerated growth ambitions. We have started in April 2023 an extensive recruitment process for the company’s sales activity. The results of these actions are expected to be visible in Q4 2023 and Q1 2024.