CITY TALK: EFT financing its way to growth
Sunday 30 July 1995
EVER since it reported losses of pounds 71m in December and followed that up at the half-way stage in May with another loss of pounds 30m, Huntingdon International has been in a mess. But it also managed to dispose of one of the millstones around its neck, the American HEE business. And with its other problem child, Travers Morgan, out of the way and new management on board, the shares have recently been ticking upwards. At 67p, they are well above the 20p to which they fell in December. All Huntingdon is left with now is its core animal life sciences business, which is healthily cash generative. An acquisition is likely in the near future.
EXPECT news from Card Care, the credit card fraud specialist, of expansion into a new business in the next few weeks. The company is one of those appealing firms with a strong niche product, and the added glamour of a dash of hi-tech ingenuity in the shape of the system it uses to prevent credit card fraud.
The downside is that the company remains in start-up mode, and has only made losses to date. But these should fall substantially this year, and there is every prospect the company can turn a reasonable profit by 1996. So far its system, which transmits details of lost and stolen cards via Teletext, is in use by almost 2,000 petrol stations, and it expects the number to rise substantially in the years ahead. The shares, at 34p, are a gamble, but they could pay off.
IF CARD CASH remains a hi-tech business that may with luck be on its way up, Reuters (528p) is one of those technology stocks that arrived a while ago. Although the roots of its business lie in journalism, its success has come from purveying financial information and prices to markets around the world.
Its figures this week, however, gave the market pause for thought. Did chief executive Peter Job's cautiously worded statement suggest that growth may be about to slip back to only a single-digit figure? Whatever, the market cooled, and there was talk of profits downgrades. But the company has an enormously strong franchise and should show profits growth for years to come. Hang on.
PAUL MORLAND, who follows smaller companies at NatWest Markets, recommends Menvier-Swan as a buy, on the grounds that it is a high-quality company operating in growth markets.
The business is mainly in emergency lighting, and the management intends to make it the lowest cost producer in the industry. To this end, it has invested pounds 11m over the past two years. Even so, year-end gearing at the recent results was a mere 3 per cent. This gives ample scope for acquisitions, which should, says Mr Morland, be enhance earnings. With earnings growth of 23 per cent a share for the latest figures, the shares at 288p remain on track to continue outperforming.
- 2 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 4 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
'Fire at every person you see': Israeli soldiers reveal they were ordered to shoot to kill in Gaza – even if the targets may have been civilians
Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
Who should I vote for? The Independent quiz matches best political party for undecided voters ahead of the general election
First-time buyers in London 'need to earn at least £77,000'
General Election 2015: Photographic history of Bullingdon Club tracked down - including new picture of David Cameron in his finery
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Can you speak German,...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity f...
£215 per day: Ashdown Group: Junior Project Manager (website, web application ...
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software Engineer / Softw...