INTEGRATED PRESENTATION OF SOPRA STERIA MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN
Message from the Chairman
The effects of the Covid-19 crisis were compounded late in the year by the steps we had to take to defend ourselves against the cyberattack that targeted our Group. While the attack was rapidly detected and our clients’ security maintained, some of our information and production systems remained down for several weeks as a result of the remedial measures we took. Despite the challenges, our results – impressively high level of resilience in 2020. Sopra Steria also generated strong cash flow, helping to cut the Group’s net financial debt by 17.2%. Even though major uncertainties remain at the start of the current year, Sopra Steria intends to build on its strong foundations and accelerate the execution of its strategic plan in 2021. The priorities are to bolster our consulting business and press ahead with digitalising our transformation solutions. In the banking sector, we will step up our drive to harness both in terms of revenue and operating margin – reflect our
synergies between the software, consulting, integration and service businesses. We will also push forward with an aggressive, but targeted acquisitions policy. From the current year, we anticipate renewed organic growth in our business and an improvement in our operating margins. Over the medium term, we confidently expect to be able to execute an ambitious, independent and value- creating corporate plan for all our stakeholders. This plan brings together employees, shareholders and partners, and targets a high level of business performance, while making a sustainable, human, purposeful contribution to society.
At the same time a year ago, Sopra Steria had successfully reached several key milestones in the implementation of its corporate plan. We had met our annual earnings targets, and were resolutely adopting a medium-term perspective as we looked at ways of speeding up our development and confirming the performance trajectory that we had set for ourselves. But this vision was swiftly disrupted as the Covid-19 virus took hold, triggering a serious economic crisis. The pandemic-related restrictions caused a wholesale drop in demand, especially in aerospace and railways, sectors in which Sopra Steria has a very strong presence. Conversely, our Group gained real traction in defence and broadly across the public sector, where we also have strong positions. Amid these challenging conditions, our top priorities were keeping our employees safe and safeguarding service delivery for our clients. We also took steps to protect our skills base and jobs, even in the most severely affected sectors of activity.
“Sopra Steria intends to build on its strong foundations and accelerate the execution of its strategic plan in 2021.”
Pierre Pasquier Chairman and Founder of Sopra Steria Group