- IT products and services provider Softcat reported a 10% rise in annual profit and declared a special dividend as it grew its customer base.

Pre-tax profit for the year through July increased to £93.6 million, up from £84.8 million year-on-year. Revenue rose 8.6% to £1.08 billion.

Softcat declared a full-year dividend of 16.6p per share, up 11% year-on-year, plus a special dividend of 7.6p share, though the special payout was 53% smaller year-on-year.

The company said its previously cancelled interim dividend would be paid as part of its proposed final dividend.

The special dividend, meanwhile, had been calculated to increase minimum cash holdings to £45 million, up from £30 million. "This change partly reflects the increase in the size and scale of the business since IPO and is considered prudent in light of the uncertainty created by Covid-19,' Softcat said.

Revenue was supported by increases in both the company's customer base and average gross profit per customer.

Turning to its outlook, Softcat said that while the new financial year had started well, it expected corporate customers 'to continue to be circumspect with their spending over the coming months'.

'This may mean that market conditions remain challenging for a time, but we remain confident in our ability to gain market share and our view of the long-term opportunity is undiminished,' the company said.

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