Candover hopes upturn will spark buyout revival

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The Independent Online
CANDOVER Investments, the trust that specialises in management buyouts, hopes to see the realisation of a number of its holdings this year and a revival of investment opportunities, writes Paul Durman.

Roger Brooke, Candover's chairman, said these developments required steady economic improvement. As yet, Candover remains cautious about this year. Although some of its companies are seeing encouraging signs, 'others are still bumping along the bottom,' Mr Brooke said.

Last year's flotations of Kenwood Appliances and Anglian Group helped to raise Candover's net assets per share by 9 per cent to 267p. The group realised pounds 2.7m from Kenwood and pounds 2.5m from Anglian, a total profit of pounds 3.3m against the investment cost.

Candover also received a pounds 1m benefit from the pound's devaluation. The group made pounds 2.5m of write-downs, only one of which was of any size.

Pre-tax profits edged higher to pounds 4.1m but Mr Brooke warned it would be difficult for Candover to maintain its income levels this year because of lower interest rates.

A final dividend of 6.5p increases the total by 8 per cent to 10.25p a share.