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Accounts specialist Sage is likely to beat expectations for the year ended 30 September, although it won't post full results until 1 December.

Sage said profits were now likely to be around £180m against the £177m predicted by analysts, according to Reuters. Group revenues grew by 29 per cent to £688m. Sales grew fastest in the US - up 30 per cent. But removing the impact of acquisitions shows a less cheery picture - organic growth revenue growth was just six per cent.

In the UK revenues grew by nine per cent to £186m and operating margin was steady at 39 per cent. Mainland Europe saw sales increase by 22 per cent to £170m. Excluding acquisitions mainland Europe saw revenue grow by five per cent.

Earlier this year Sage bought ACCPAC, the accounts software arm of CA, for $110m. In 2003 it bought Softline and Timberline.

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