Family success for Yule Catto: The Investment Column
The pre-tax figure to December, up a tenth at pounds 36.5m, had a fair wind from external factors last year, while underlying growth was perhaps a mite disappointing. The soaring price of raw materials which was such a feature of 1995 started to subside by the end of that year and by early 1996 costs were back to previous levels.
But in a difficult and cyclical sector, Yule has done well with targeted expansion in genuine niche areas and growing markets. It can claim to be number one or number two in the UK in a number of unromantic but important businesses, ranging from PVA emulsions for the paint and adhesives industry to single dome rooflights for buildings. It also has a useful 20 per cent of its business in the Far East, where it has been notching up growth rates in double figures, well over double typical levels in its northern European heartland.
So even with margins of 11.5 per cent in the chemicals operation and 7.5 per cent in building products, there should still be scope to improve.
The real challenge for Yule is what to do with its financial strength. With gearing of just 17.5 per cent and a pounds 25m to pounds 30m capital expenditure programme behind it, the group is looking for acquisitions, but not finding much of value.
Profits of pounds 40.5m this year would put the shares on a forward multiple of 14. One to tuck away, but with the Cattos and Kuala Lumpur Kepong of Malaysia sitting on half the shares, the market is tight.
- 1 Kylie Jenner challenge: Bizarre lip suction device inspired by Kardashian sister goes viral
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 5 Giorgio Armani criticises the way some gay men dress saying 'a man has to be a man'
Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
Katie Hopkins and The Sun editor are reported to police for incitement to racial hatred following migrant boat column
Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
Giorgio Armani criticises the way some gay men dress saying 'a man has to be a man'
Electronic waste worth £34bn piling up in 'toxic mine', warns UN report
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
iJobs Money & Business
£30 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst with experienc...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£21000 - £24000 per annum: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group has been engaged b...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, int...