Sales leap puts iTouch back in black

Itouch, the mobile phone content company, yesterday announced half-year results showing a positive outcome on cash flow, earnings per share and profit before tax for the first time since its flotation four years ago.

Itouch, the mobile phone content company, yesterday announced half-year results showing a positive outcome on cash flow, earnings per share and profit before tax for the first time since its flotation four years ago.

The company, which is 34.8 per cent owned by Independent News & Media, the publisher of The Independent, said sales were up 31 per cent to £33.8m in the six months to 30 June, while it had turned a £4m operating loss into a £1.2m profit.

The company sells ringtones, games and screen savers to mobile phone users and believes the take-up of 3G mobile services will accelerate its growth.

The company announced it had secured a Shrek 2 content deal with the US studio DreamWorks plus agreements with Channel 4 and Comic Relief. It completed the acquisition of Jippi, the Finnish mobile entertainment group, in August and it also signed a licensing deal with For-Side.com, the Japanese mobile services provider.

Wayne Pitout, iTouch's chief executive, said the company's volumes were comparable with those of iTunes, the music download service owned by Apple. "In the first six months of the year we did 62.5 million text-based transactions. On a 12-month view that means we are not dissimilar to what iTunes have done."

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