Derek Pain: Olympics security firm jumps ahead after sluggish start
No Pain, No Gain
Saturday 23 April 2011
City analysts have provided welcome – and unexpected – support for two constituents of the no pain, no gain portfolio. One, the security giant G4S, had experienced a rather sluggish time this year; the other, Hargreaves Services, a coal to transport group, had shown distinct signs of coming off the boil.
The sprawling UBS securities group provided the fillip for G4S. The shares were below 240p around the turn of the year and, in spite of satisfactory profits and a 10 per cent increase in the dividend, they had displayed at best hesitant progress; that is until the securities giant pronounced. Its decision to lift its target price to 330p inspired a jump to 275p, not far below the12-month high. G4S is never still for long. The stock market's biggest employer, with 625,000 workers on its books, has won the accolade of guarding next year's Olympic Games and has continued its seemingly endless pursuit of add-on acquisitions with the up to £10.2m take over of a surveillance and investigation business, Cotswold.
Hargreaves, after interim figures in February, raced ahead to a 985p peak. But profit taking and, I suspect, a feeling that the group had entered an uneventful period prompted the shares to drift to around 900p. Then the Arbuthnot securities house intervened. Its analysts lifted their target price by 50p to 1,200p, a level I still regard as undemanding. The price has not yet attained its former glory but the upgrade pushed it above 950p.
Arbuthnot has not included the proposed Tower Colliery development in South Wales in its calculations. Hargreaves, hoping it could produce up to seven million tonnes of coal over six years, had expected a planning decision to be forthcoming by last month. But it has had to curb its enthusiasm. The result of its application is now expected in the summer. Delay ndicating dismay? Arbuthnot doesn't appear to think so.
After the portfolio's misfortunes with Clarity Commerce Solutions (a profit warning) and Mears (bear raiders), which I discussed last week, the revival at G4S and Hargreaves comes as a relief.
The share performance of two other constituents making waves is also a welcome Easter bonus. Rivington Street Holdings, taken on board at 27.5p in November, is now 45.5p on the Plus fringe market. The deal-hungry group, with interests from fund management to quarrying, has unveiled heady interim profits.I have written about Rivington frequently in the past year and make no apologies for descending on it again. It is certainly a company on the move.
Underlying profits come out at £1.07m against £386,000. The "true" pre-tax figure, after stripping out amortisation and non- recurring charges, emerges at £398,000 up from £87,000. Chairman Jim Mellon and chief executive Tom Winnifrith are not indulging in forecasts but they point out that the group – paying a maiden interim dividend of 0.25p a share – normally enjoys more strength in its second six months than in its first.
One area where Rivington has performed particularly well is fund management. It has several funds and, I suspect, some additions lurking up its corporate sleeve. Although the group is outside the City's inner circle and therefore does not get the appreciation it deserves, its investment display has been outstanding. Funds under management reached £56.6m against £18.7m a year ago. Mr Mellon observes that "objective data" proves Rivington has "the best track record in the UK".
Capital Pub Co, recruited in January, is the other constituent spreading cheer around. In an upbeat trading bulletin it says revenue in the year ended March jumped 24 per cent compared with the previous year. It continues to expand its estate, in and around London, and with two pubs due to resume trading in the next few months after improvements and an acquisition on the verge of completion, Capital should be set for another rousing round this year. Recruited at 120p, the shares, as I write, approach 150p.
The pub chain intends to resume dividend payments. It forecasts a 2.1p a share payment, the level of its last dividend, paid in 2008. Chief executive Clive Watson says: "The time is right to resume paying ividends." Shareholders will agree.
Scottish Power hit with sales ban by regulator
There are 'dark corners' of the investment and pensions industry, says Pensions Minister
Simon Read: You're guilty until proven innocent when HMRC sends in the tax credit detectives
Midweek Money: The end (of the tax year) is nigh: act now
Weekly Money: round-up of the personal finance stories you may have missed 2 to 6 March
- 1 Tourist films plane's descent just metres above packed Caribbean beach
- 2 Kate Moss: Previously unpublished nude photo revealed by Mert and Marcus
- 3 Indian woman creates 'Marriage CV' after parents put her on dating site: 'Definitely not marriage material. Won’t grow long hair, ever'
- 4 World Book Day: Boy 'excluded' from school after dressing up as Fifty Shades' Christian Grey
- 5 Bad Jews poster 'censored' on London Tube
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Elif Shafak: Turkish author warns against rise of British nationalism
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
Nigel Farage promises Ukip will not 'stigmatise' would-be migrants – and says he wants 'everyone to speak the same language'
iJobs Money & Business
£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join ...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A global leader operating...
£12 - £15 Hourly Rate: Jemma Gent: In this role you will report to the Head of...
£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established early...
Day In a Page
This school conversion, near Stockwell Tube, oozes New York loft style. The one-bedroom flat features double height ceilings and exposed brick work
This six-bedroom Georgian home is on three floors with open fireplaces, a two-oven Aga, an annexe, and cottage gardens with outbuildings and a car barn
High Crest House covers an impressive 9384sq ft, with almost three acres of grounds including a tennis court and summer house enclosed by electric gates
A six-bedroom farmhouse with separate accommodation in converted stables. Situated in the village of Church Aston, within walking distance to the market town
A two-bedroom flat with under-heated walnut floors and bespoke built-in storage. The Tube and Clapham Common are a short stroll away
A refurbished seven-bedroom townhouse with staff quarters, cinema room, superb gym, steam room and plunge pool
A minimnalist four-bedroom home designed to the highest spec, featuring glass walls and a kitchen space lit by a glass roof
Hibernate during winter and make your living during the summer at this busy guesthouse with panoramic sea views, in the village of Lynton
A four-bedroom penthouse next to the Tate with direct views of St Paul's from two floors of luxurious living space
A four-bedroom detached home surrounded by spacious gardens and woodland, close to New Pudsey
An 18th-century, three-bedroom home near Langstone Harbour built from ships beams with vaulted ceilings and wood burning stoves
A five-bedroom semi-detached home with a mix of period and modern features in a popular and convenient location
This five-bedroom red-brick beauty overlooks the village green and sits in just under two acres of land
A three-bedroom villa with self-contained flat, minutes from Lake Windermere
A deceptively spacious, beautifully presented Georgian home with 3000sq ft of living space and five reception rooms
A five-bedroom Victorian home with four receptions, superb gardens and paddock in Pembury
An eight-bedroom house on the south side of the The Green with cinema, wine cellars and summer house
This 17th century beauty is full of rustic cosiness, while the detached home office means you can also run a business
Four exclusive apartments in a Grade II-listed former medical school with 2,275 sq ft of living space and 18ft ceilings
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
A three-bedroom, 15th-century cottage with original features in the picturesque village of Sissinghurst
A six-bedroom terraced house with large south-facing roof terrace, cinema room and wine cellar
A new seven-bedroom home built in Queen Anne-style with swimming pool and parkland views in Mortimer
A listed, four-bedroom farmhouse in the rural hamlet of Rushall with detached barn, four acres of gardens and paddocks
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads