- Internet of Things data provider Vianet Group said it expected to post a higher annual profit in line with market expectations.

Trading in the second half had tracked as anticipated, with annual profit expected to come in above the previous year's £3.6m.

Vianet also said it expected to recommend a maintained final dividend of 4p per share. The smart machines division continued to deliver strong growth in connected devices, with increased penetration helped by the transition of capital sales elements to a recurring sales model.

'Whilst reduced capital sales suppresses short term financial performance, these strong contracted recurring revenues provide greater visibility and higher quality of future earnings,' the company said.

The smart zones divisional contribution was slightly down, with the impact of pub closures being partially offset by transactional process cost savings and system upgrades for customers.

'We are pleased to deliver good year-on-year profit growth again and it is notable that this has been achieved whilst shifting the focus within smart machines from capital to recurring annuity based sales,' chairman James Dickson said.

'The successful integration of Vendman has boosted momentum and we have seen good growth in connections for telemetry and contactless payment solutions for both the coffee vending, and snack and can vending markets.'

At 8:38am: [LON:VNET] Vianet PLC share price was +0.5p at 121.5p

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