Derek Pain: It's goodbye to Animalcare - with a watching brief on Findel


The No Pain, No Gain portfolio remains in the black, but the number of losers has increased in recent months. For a long time three of the 15 constituents were stuck in the red, but nowadays I have to contend with at least four culprits in deficit and another hovering uncomfortably on the fringe.

My recalcitrant shares, which were all in profit at one time, are power provider Alkane Energy; veterinary products group Animalcare; vending machine business SnackTime; and environmental specialist TEG.

Lloyds Banking is flitting below and above the portfolio's buying level. It would be wise, I believe, to unload one of my five and use the resultant cash for reinvestment.

I have explained the reasons the portfolio intends to stick with Alkane for the time being and TEG is, as I have indicated, in the last chance saloon. SnackTime should have been sold a long time ago but I failed to take action and with the shares around 13p it is now too late.

That leaves Lloyds and Animalcare. The bank was only acquired a year ago and the portfolio likes to take a longer view. In addition it seems the shares are suffering from short-term hiccups and could eventually go higher, despite Scotland's breakaway threat.

On the other hand, the veterinary business has endured a portfolio presence for nearly three years and although the company is making progress and pays dividends, it could be some years before planned changes significantly influence profits. So the shares are unlikely to progress for some time.

I have on a number of occasions said I intended to dump Animalcare and I am now executing my threat. The shares were acquired at 171p; the price is, as I write, 144p.

I have some regrets at giving up on the shares. The group is in a lucrative business and is busy recharging its portfolio. Operating profits for the year to the end of June are likely to come out at £2.6m with revenue up 6.3 per cent.

Still, the group seems unlikely to achieve the pre-tax profits that it hit in 2010. The last figure was £2.33m. The removal of Animalcare, together with the departure of Brightside, means the portfolio's strength is down to "unlucky" 13. As I am a superstitious old soul, I will endeavour to quickly recruit at least one newcomer.

The takeover of Brightside by private equity group AnaCap has been completed and the cash received. The portfolio acquired the shares in the summer of 2012 at 18.5p; the offer was 25p. Last year the insurance broker was nearly captured with, it is said, at least 27p initially on the table. But the bid was reduced to a rejected 20p/22p when Brightside encountered trading difficulties. There is also the chance I could sack one of the existing constituents. Findel, the home shopping group, is causing some concern. The shares, having topped 320p, are now 242.75p.

The portfolio is still making money but it is disconcerting when a share sacrifices so much ground.

Booker, the cash and carry chain, is another stock that has lost much of its momentum.

However, it is now making hesitant progress and I am in no hurry to oust Findel. It is not unusual for high-flying shares to suffer an unjustified retreat, often the result of profit taking by those who acquired the stock at much lower prices.

Still, I will have to keep a close eye on Findel, as there is a faint hint that it could be running out of steam.

Independent Partners; Do you need financial advice on your investments, pension or insurance? Book a free consultation with an independent Financial Adviser at

A boy holds a chick during the Russian National Agricultural Exhibition Golden Autumn 2014 in Moscow on October 9, 2014.
Arts and Entertainment
Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele in Fifty Shades of Grey
Bafetibis Gomis of Swansea City is stretchered off at White Hart Lane
Jerry Seinfeld Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee
peopleSitcom star urges men to be more supportive of women than ever
Life and Style
Living for the moment: Julianne Moore playing Alzheimer’s sufferer Alice
Jay Z
businessJay-Z's bid for Spotify rival could be blocked
footballLouis van Gaal is watching a different Manchester United and Wenger can still spring a surprise
The spider makes its break for freedom
A propaganda video shows Isis forces near Tikrit
voicesAdam Walker: The Koran has violent passages, but it also has others that explicitly tells us how to interpret them
Arts and Entertainment
World Book Day
Ashley Young celebrates the winner for Manchester United against Newcastle
footballNewcastle v United player ratings
Life and Style
love + sex
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Ashdown Group: Graduate Application Support Analyst

    £25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A global leader operating...

    Reach Volunteering: External Finance Trustee Needed!

    Voluntary post, reasonable expenses reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Would you ...

    Christine McCleave: FP&A Analyst

    £36,000 - £40,000: Christine McCleave: Are you looking for a new opportunity a...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

    £15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

    Day In a Page

    War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

    Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

    Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
    Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

    What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

    Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
    The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

    Setting in motion the Internet of Things

    British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
    Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

    Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

    Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
    Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

    Cult competition The Moth goes global

    The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
    Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

    Pakistani women come out fighting

    Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
    Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

    Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

    The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
    LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

    Education: LGBT History Month

    Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
    11 best gel eyeliners

    Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

    Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

    Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

    The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

    After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot