Acebusiness company Staffware has increased its pre-tax profits by 133% – to £1.7m – for the first six months of 2000.

Sales of Staffware's software, including its eProcess product launched last February, leapt 52% to £17m during the same half-year period. The eProcess product accounted for £1.1m of business and has been adopted by ACE Insurance, Transco and

However, one of the largest contracts for eProcess, – £1.6m – was placed by Abbey National.

Growth for the eProcess product has also been strong in Germany, Australia and Italy.

Staffware chairman and chief executive John O'Connell said its record results were achieved despite being only seven months into its eProcess initiative.

He added: “We are in a pivotal position with many companies as they settle on their strategy for ebusiness. Recent independent market research forecasts are very encouraging and underpin our plan to grow the business substantially.”

O'Connell added that the board will keep a close eye on opportunities to accelerate its £20m investment programme in eProcess.

The group now employs 331 staff, an increase of more than 43% or, 106 people since December 1999.

Staffware achieved a full listing on the London Stock Exchange in April.