discoverIE reported resilient H121 results considering the expected drop in demand due to COVID-19. Having taken action at the start of the pandemic to reduce costs and conserve cash, the company was able to minimise the impact of the revenue shortfall on operating profit and pay down a substantial amount of debt. With order intake and design win activity now moving in the right direction, the company is well positioned to resume its growth path. While we have reduced our forecasts to reflect the risk from ongoing lockdowns, the reinstated dividend and resumption of M&A underline management’s confidence in the outlook.
Companies: discoverIE Group PLC
discoverIE has announced the acquisition of Limitor, a designer and manufacturer of thermal safety components and sensors, for €14.5m. It is subject to regulatory approvals, which are expected during the final quarter of this financial year, and will operate within the group’s Variohm cluster of specialist sensor businesses. With an operating margin of 21%, it is a high value-add business and is expected to enhance group underlying earnings and margins. We have upgraded FY 2022E EPS by 2.5%, raise our target price from 641p to 657p and reiterate our view that discoverIE is resilient, flexible and well positioned for growth in the structurally growing markets of Renewable Energy, Transportation, Medical and Industrial & Connectivity.
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discoverIE has weathered the pandemic well, with H1 sales down -6% and adj. PBT down -12%. Cash flow was particularly strong, reducing net debt from £61m at March 2020 to £42m at September. The second half has started well, with orders ahead of sales and up on last year, and dividends have resumed with a 3.15p interim (up +6% on last year). We are factoring a touch more caution into our forecasts to allow time for orders to build into sales, but reiterate our view that discoverIE is resilient, flexible and well positioned for growth in the structurally growing markets of Renewable Energy, Transportation, Medical and Industrial & Connectivity.
discoverIE reported resilient trading through H121, with a revenue decline of 6% y-o-y, noting that sales in target markets performed significantly ahead of other sectors. Order intake improved through Q2 and the book-to-bill ratio for September was above 1x. With increased confidence in its outlook and a strong balance sheet, the company intends to reinstate the dividend with interims in November and has resumed its M&A strategy with the acquisition of a high margin US sensors business.
Bango (BGO): Corp Bango scales up Far East operations | discoverIE (DSCV): Corp Resilient H1, improving outlook, dividends returning | LPA Group (LPA): Corp Prestigious Siemens project award | Touchstone Exploration (TXP): Corp Chinook announced as another significant gas discovery
Companies: DSCV LPA TXP
discoverIE’s trading update for the first four months of FY21 confirms that orders are moving in the right direction, with month-on-month increases in June and July. Revenues are down 8% y-o-y on a reported basis, in line with expectations. While COVID-19 is likely to present ongoing challenges in the short term, the company is confident it has the resources to manage the business through this and is well positioned to take advantage of growth opportunities post COVID-19, highlighting its intention to resume acquisitions in H2 as market conditions improve. We maintain our forecasts.
Belvoir Group (BLV): Corp | discoverIE (DSCV): Corp | Intercede (IGP): Corp | Minds + Machines (MMX): Corp | Omega Diagnostics (ODX): Corp | Sopheon (SPE): Corp
Companies: DSCV IGP MMX ODX SPE BLV
discoverIE reported FY20 results ahead of our forecasts for underlying operating profit and EPS. Looking through short-term COVID-19-related disruption, the company has set new strategic targets for the next five years. These are a continuation of the strategy to grow the Design & Manufacturing business organically and via acquisition and include the target to increase the group operating margin from 8.5% (pro forma) to 12.5%. We maintain our normalised operating profit and EPS forecasts.
Allergy Therapeutics (AGY.L): Corp Profit upgrade | Aukett Swanke (AUK.L): Corp Interim results | Avacta (AVTG.L): Corp SARS-CoV-2 point-of care antigen test – update | discoverIE (DSCV.L): Corp Resilient, flexible and well positioned for growthiomart (IOMG.L): Corp Finals to March 2020 | Open Orphan (ORPH.L): Corp FY 2019 results
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discoverIE has reported a strong performance in FY20 despite Q4 being affected by COVID-19. Sales were up +8% at constant exchange rates and adj. EPS up by +11% (ahead of our +1% forecast) as margins improved by 100bps to 8.0% and tax reduced. Looking forward, Q1 sales are down -10%, evidencing relatively resilient customer demand, and the order book remains strong at £159m (+13% CER). Coupled with strong cash flow reducing net debt/EBITDA to 1.25x, the group is very well placed to trade through the current uncertainties and then resume its proven strategic growth path. We make no changes to our forecasts.
discoverIE saw a stronger finish to FY20 than expected as China resumed trading faster than anticipated. In Q121 so far, slightly weaker customer demand and manufacturing shutdowns elsewhere are affecting sales; to manage cash during this period management has cut discretionary spending, is pausing M&A and has cut the FY20 final dividend. These measures combined with lower than expected gearing at the end of FY20 leave the company well-funded to trade through this period of disruption.
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Boohoo has delivered strong results over the peak trading period for the four months ended 31 December 2020. Group revenue is +40% YOY, with robust growth seen across all brands and regions. The Agenda for Change programme is progressing at pace, demonstrating the Group’s commitment to setting a new standard for ethical supply chains in the fashion industry.
Companies: boohoo group Plc
Today's news & views, plus announcements from JET, PSN, SONG, HWDN, MSLH, PAGE, WMH, ASC, BGO, CUSN, CAY
Companies: Bango plc (BGO:LON)Persimmon Plc (PSN:LON)
Although 2020 will probably go down in history as one of the most challenging years experienced during our lifetime, it will also likely be chronicled as one of the best years for the recognition and appreciation of science. As we entered 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic was in its infancy. However, it rapidly evolved through the exponential rise in infections and mortality globally. Much has been achieved during the past 12 months in the fight against COVID-19, but, as we enter 2021, there are considerable concerns about the emergence of a mutant version of the virus and the second wave that we are now facing.
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Cenkos Securities plc has terminated coverage of RA International Group Plc. Our previous recommendation (BUY) and forecasts can no longer be relied upon.
Please contact Cenkos for further information.
Companies: RA International Group Plc
A positive Y/E trading update from Portmeirion this morning with the full year outcome comfortably ahead of market expectations. There is a c7% revenue beat vs our forecast which flows through to us upgrading our FY20 PBT from £0.2m to £1.2m - a highly pleasing outcome in the context of our deep value/recovery/new management thesis. The outperformance was led by the UK/USA where trading proved robust in H2 despite lockdown due to strong online momentum. We keep our outer year profit forecasts unchanged at this stage given the CV19/macro backdrop, but understand current trading is positive with both factories open and the order-book healthy. Management is fully focused on executing the strategic growth plan outlined at the time of the June’20 fund raise and we expect a fuller update at the March finals. Overall, today’s update is a step in the right direction in building confidence in the growth / online plan and should be well received by investors
Companies: Portmeirion Group PLC
Accrol has delivered strong H1 results, with underlying EBITDA +69% YOY driven by stronger than expected gross margins as mix benefits continue to come through. We maintain earnings forecasts for now, albeit believe these to be well underpinned by margin improvements, synergies and growth. We believe Accrol is well positioned to emerge as a £35-40m EBITDA business over the medium term, in what we see as an exciting period for the Group.
Companies: Accrol Group Holdings plc
Residential for rent developer and manager Watkin Jones today posted FY 2020 results, in which profits, cash and dividend beat our estimates by c. 4 - 5%. We have maintained our FY 2021E forecasts and introduced estimates for FY 2022E. Our growth assumptions are supported by further evidence in the statement of a revival in forward funding by institutional investors for both the Group’s build-to-rent and student accommodation developments. A new strategy is aimed to trial the private residential sales division more to affordable housing, in line with WJ’s low-risk, capital-light model.
Companies: Watkin Jones Plc
Recent news has been positive. Notably, the Group announced a ground-breaking £27.5m contract award with a new OEM customer in mid-September. Trading has been more resilient than we expected at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, demonstrated by the positive full year pre-close update issued today. Revenue for the year to 31 December (£2m) is in-line with our forecast but gross cash is better, by c.£250k. Operational developments continue apace, and reflecting a healthy pipeline and expanding workforce, a dedicated HR executive has been hired. Confidence in the medium-term demand for the Group’s products has improved with recent contract wins; management now believes its Knowsley factory, when fully built-out, will be able to generate £75m of revenue each year against £50m, previously. Our estimates are unchanged pending the full May statement but with a stronger medium-term outlook, we lift our valuation to 65p from 57p.
Companies: Surface Transforms plc
Victoria has issued a trading update highlighting that the strong performance it announced in H1 has continued, with the Group achieving record revenue and operating profit for Q3 to end December. Group revenue was ahead by more than 10% in Q3, in part due the acquisition of the business and assets of Ascot in February 2020. We see the statement as reenforcing the positive messages made at the time of the interim results at the end of November that demonstrated the resilience of the Group. Performance is benefiting from strategic investment in logistics and service in 2019, operational efficiencies, consumers focusing on refurbishing their homes and maintained production and deliveries to satisfy demand. As in November, there will be a UK lockdown impact in Q4, albeit the Board believes Victoria is well placed to meet this headwind. We have no formal forecasts and will initiate In due course.
Companies: Victoria PLC
Boohoo has announced meaningful progress in its Agenda for Change Programme, to deliver long lasting change to its supply chain and business practices. Sir Brian Leveson PC has been appointed to provide independent oversight of the programme, with KPMG engaged to provide additional resource, expertise and independence, working alongside the Group’s internal responsible sourcing and compliance team, as well as with external supply chain audit specialists Bureau Veritas and Verisio. We believe the calibre of the appointments reflects the Group’s unwavering commitment to implementing in full, and with complete transparency, all recommendations of the Independent Review.
Tern plc* (TERN.L, 7.1p/£23.5m) Portfolio update: Strong business momentum (12.01.21) | Audioboom plc* (BOOM.L, 276p/£43.3m) Expanded content network (15.01.21)
Companies: Tern Plc (TERN:LON)Audioboom Group PLC (BOOM:LON)
Games Workshop Group’s (GAW’s) H121 trading update highlights that it has enjoyed a stronger end to the period than expected by management: H121 PBT will be not less £90m (y-o-y growth of c 54%), £10m higher than indicated in the 7 November trading statement (see our recent update note). Therefore, GAW’s PBT in H121 is greater than that for the whole of FY20. The strong performance leads to a 40% increase in the year-to-date dividend, as the company continues to distribute truly surplus cash. We upgrade our PBT forecasts for FY21 by a further 6%. Following the relative weakness in the share price in recent weeks, and the upgrade to our forecasts, the P/E multiple of 28.9x for FY21e is back below recent highs.
Companies: Games Workshop Group PLC
Real progress towards significant value generation
Companies: Tern Plc
Tern plc* (TERN.L, 8.0p/£24.1m) | Corero Network Security (CNS.L, 8.25p/£40.8m) | Eagle Eye Solutions Group plc (EYE.L, 288p/£86.9m)
Companies: TERN CNS EYE
We initiate on Portmeirion and argue that it is in a better position than the current market valuation suggests. It has delivered a resilient first half and, following a strategy reset under the new CEO, it has much more enhanced capabilities with an improving model and profit outlook. Furthermore, Portmeirion is well funded with no balance sheet concerns. The shares trade on low spot multiples of 10x FY21 P/E with and 5x EV/EBITDA with a 9% FCF yield. A SOTP analysis based on peer/corporate deal metrics shows fair value towards 650p. Patient deep value investors should take a much closer look.