Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Service Companies' Assets Increase 42%

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Service Companies' Assets Increase 42%

Article excerpt

Fourteen firms represented in this sector provide services that range from floral delivery to satellite commumications. A number of the firms are quite small, six of which have less than $4 million in assets. Five firms "went public" in 1984. Only three firms' market prices were higher at year end.

Assets in this sector increased 42 percent last year with all but two firms participating. First Data Management, which provides data processing services, applications software and electronic fundstransfer capabilities to the financial industry, had an increase in assets of 179 percent. This sizeable increase which reflects, in part, a sizeable captial infusion, accounted for a major portion of the gain recorded by the service sector.

Only one firm did not add to its sales base with the average gain at 23 percent. Sales for National Royalty, which has a savings and loan company and is engaged in real estate investments, rose more than two-fold last year and reflects the mid-1983 acquisition of its savings and loan subsidiary.

Six of the firms increased their profit levels over last year while half were reporting losses. Pre-Paid Legal Services, whose principal business activity is the sale of a pre-paid legal service contract had more than a two-fold profit gain on its way to a record.

A complete turnabout from a deficit level to one of profits was experienced by two firms, USPCI, which derives its revenues primarily from the treatment, disposal and transportion of hazardous wastes, and Educational Development, which distributes books and some educational materials to retail stores and also develops, produces and markets materials, software and systems to educators.

Increased economic activity, a more rigorous enforcement of regulations and the company's more aggressive marketing efforts all contributed to USPCI's significantly higher revenues and, in turn, record profits in 1984. …

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