Page last updated at 08:27 GMT, Monday, 18 January 2010

Web genealogy firm profit boost

brightsolid website
Brightsolid will handle the online hosting for the 2011 census in Scotland

The growing market in online family history research has brought healthy profits for one of the industry leaders.

Brightsolid has reported pre-tax profits in the year to March 2009 of more than £2m, on a turnover of £13m.

The Dundee-based company last year bought a London online genealogy business,

The two parts of its business last year made a combined loss of £2.2m loss on turnover of less than £7m.

Its growing dominance of the industry saw the company agree to take over Friends Reunited from ITV plc in August 2009. That brought a referral to the Competition Commission by the Office of Fair Trading, with the outcome of an inquiry due by April.

During the current year we expect growth to continue, and this will enable the company to reduce debt and fund new investment
Chris van der Kuyl

Brightsolid is owned by DC Thomson, the publisher of The Courier, Press and Journal and the Sunday Post.

It runs the official Scottish genealogy website,, under contract with the General Register Office for Scotland, the National Archives and the court of the Lord Lyon. It is to handle online hosting for the 2011 census in Scotland. provides access to English family history records, while the company runs, including emigration records.

The company also provides data centre, or cloud computing, technology to other companies, including Clyde Union.

Chris van der Kuyl, the chief executive, said: "At a time of economic uncertainty, brightsolid is working within two sectors which are experiencing growth - major growth in the cases of cloud computing and family history websites.

"During the current year we expect growth to continue, and this will enable the company to reduce debt and fund new investment needed in the two operating divisions. We expect that investment will have an impact on profits, but it will lead to a stronger and more profitable business in the longer-term."

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