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Staging Connections Goes Back to Basics


By Ian Neubauer

Staging Connections Group (SCG) will sell more assets and refocus on its core business — renting and supplying AV equipment — to weather the economic slowdown in 2009.

The realignment of its operations is part of a three-year, four-pillar plan devised by management to restore value to the company following a problematic year that saw it amount close to $100 million in debt.

The strategy was laid out an investor briefing for SCG’s half-year results, at which the company announced a loss of $14.3 million for the six months ended December 31.

The result was reflected $3.9 million loss on the sale of its UK lighting arm Lighting Essential, goodwill impairment of $6.2 million and another $1.3 million in restructuring costs.

Nevertheless, SCG chief executive, Tony Chamberlain, said there was light at the end of the tunnel.

He said organic growth in Australia would be driven by the relaunch of AVexpress — a lower-cost alternative to the full AV service provided by Staging Connections to venues and corporations for boardroom presentations.

Chamberlain also hinted there could be further job cuts (50 have been cut in recent weeks) as the company endeavours to reduce its debts, which currently stands at $83 million. It will also cut its car fleet from 72 to 51 within the next 12 months.

“In closing we have a plan to drive efficiency and growth in the business,” he said. “You will see from this presentation that we are tracking to plan.”

SCG shares were trading at 1.7 cents at 2:00pm today (Mar 10) compared to 2 cents seven days ago.