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LPA Group plc LPA reports that he last financial year was exceptionally strong and something of a blockbuster which it finished at a gallop with record output. The new financial year then started with a record order book and a major contract win the award of the contract for the upgrade of the lighting on London’s Central and Waterloo & City lines rolling stock. The contract is worth 4m. to 2023 and also has an ongoing through-life support contract to 2043. The rail market remains very buoyant, with huge commitments by Government attracting massive inward investment which potentially promises a bonanza. Despite 2018’s strong performance the current financial year is expected to see a return to more regular levels of activity.
Hiscox plc HSX has enjoyed strong growth during the 9 months to the 30th September with gross written premiums rising by 14.3%. As markets remain challenging however, this is expected to moderate over the remainder of the year. The results were impacted by catastrophes in the US and the Far East as well as by a number of larger individual claims. Plans for Brexit are well advanced and have always assumed a worst-case scenario ‘hard Brexit’ and for that the company is prepared, irrespective of the outcome of the government’s negotiations. So much for the relevance of politicians.
Totally plc TLY The first half of the current year has been a transformational period for the group with interim results showing turnover rising to over 40,000,000 from 3,530,000 last year. In excess of £10m new business and renewed contracts have been announced since the previous results announcement on the10 July. The Chancellor’s announcement of an increase in NHS funding of £20.5 billion over a 5 year period will no doubt help the transformation continue.
WANdisco WAND has secured a contract with the leading information and communications technology provider in China. The contract is valued at $1 million part of which will be recurring. The company says that the Chinese market represents a significant untapped opportunity.
Versarien VRS Yesterday signed a Framework Agreement with the Qingdao Municipal Bureau of Commerce in Shandong Province, China, covering cooperation between the parties in the fields of graphene research, development and industrialisation. Qingdao, is a major city in Shandong Province, China, with a population of over nine million people and is one of the major areas of graphite production in China.
Barratt Developments BDEV Completions in the year to the 30th June rose by a lowly 0.4% on 2016 but it was still the highest volume for nine years, enabling Barratt to claim another excellent year which produced a strong operational and financial performance. The final dividend is being increased by 39% in addition to a 17.3p per share special dividend. Profit before tax rose by 12.1% and basic earnings per share by 11.3p. No mention is made this time round of what happened to the average house price but the tiny rise in completions produced a 9.4% rise in revenue, so perhaps that speaks for itself. The future still looks rosy with forward sales as at the 3rd September up by 13.8%.
McCarthy & Stone MCS managed to complete only 6 more sales in the year to the 31st August than it did in 2016 despite a strong recovery in the second half which saw a strong upward momentum in the average selling price, which is set to continue into the current year. For the year as a whole the average selling price rose by 3% and revenue by 4%. The forward order book at he year end was 21% head of last year.
Sports Direct SPD provides a trading update ahead of today’s much anticipated AGM. The only statistic provided is that underlying EBITDA for 2018 is expected to grow by between 5% and 15% which appears to indicate a certain amount of uncertainty amongst senior management as to the eventual outcome of the years trading. The company’s obsession with becoming the Selfridges of sport seems to continue and Mike Ashley admits it is their strategic goal and that in fact they are exceeding their expectations in moving towards it.
WANdisco WAND claims an outstanding performance in the six months to the 30th June with total bookings up by 73%, revenue by 71% and its first ever positive EBITDA of $0.3m. compared to last years first half loss of $4.5m. The result of this success is that the statutory operating loss fell from $17.9m to $3.8m. The order book is strong and the second half sales pipeline is gathering pace. Its latest Fusion version is claimed to have a broad appeal across multiple verticals, which presumably it regards as a good thing.
Cluff Natural Resources CLNR Believes that the outlook both for the sector and the company showed marked improvement in 2016 with major progress being made in the southern North Sea. Geological and technical work throughout the year resulted in a tripling of total combined P50 resources from 845 BCG of gas to 2.37 TCF. funding for the coming year was also secured.
Frontier Dev plc. FDEV The growth in revenue for the 6 months to 30th November exceeded the boards expectations with a rise of 66% to £18.1m. interim results are expected early in February.
Innova Derma IDP revenue is expected to have risen by just over 80% to about £3 for the 6 months to 31st December. Growth has been led by the success of Skinny Tan which was launched in February through Superdrug. Revenue and earnings are expected to be enhanced in the second half following the entry to the American market in October.
Goals Soccer Centres GOAL claims that it has at long last turned the corner with robust trading and a significant improvement in business during the second half year to 31st December. Modernisation and updating of facilities are said to be responsible for the volume rise of 3.1% which compares with 1% for the year as a whole.
WANdisco WAND maintained its momentum during its second half to the 31st December with a rise in bookings of 109%. The fourth quarter and the year as a whole, both saw rises of 97%. A number of new contracts were obtained and the year ended with a strong order book and sales pipeline. In the 4th quarter the company operated at nearly cash flow break even point and 2017 is expected to show more progress made towards achieving profitability.