Investment Column: Odds stacked against Stanley
Thursday 15 January 1998
However, pre-tax profits rose 37 per cent to pounds 10.1m for the six months to October, causing the share price to perk up 9p to 273.5p.
Casino profits did fall 9 per cent to pounds 4.73m. However, its pounds 1.5m scheme to solve a staffing crisis is working and the business looks to have turned the corner. The bookies chain can also look forward to a big one-off boost from the World Cup. Perversely, the takeover of the Coral betting chain by Ladbroke should help business. Ladbroke is unlikely to compete with Stanley for any new sites on the market and competition authorities may even force it to put more bookies up for sale.
But Stanley's problem is that organic growth in both its divisions will be hard to come by. The Government is unlikely to allow operators new slot machines for at another year at least and probably much longer, a move which had promised to increase Stanley's revenues dramatically. As for betting, most of the growth has come from new numbers games and slot machines but the prospect of further growth here is somewhat limited. It is a worrying trend that the number of betting slips taken has actually fallen in the last six months.
Analysts forecast pre-tax profits of around pounds 24m-pounds 25m for the year to April, putting the shares on a prospective p/e ratio of 18-19.
Given Stanley's strong management team, which is armed with a pounds 40m war chest, the rating is justified but the upside looks relatively limited. Hold.
Peaches Geldof cause of death: 'Heroin addict' socialite had taken fatal dose of drug, inquest concludes
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israel may have committed war crimes, says UN human rights chief
Peaches Geldof inquest: Tragic final moments of socialite's life reveal she lied to husband about failed heroin tests
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
iJobs Money & Business
£350 - £400 per day: Orgtel: PMO Analyst - Banking - London - £350 -£400 per d...
£300 - £350 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Cost Reporting Manager - MI Packs -...
£35000 - £40000 Per Annum plus 23 days holiday and pension scheme: Clearwater ...
£475 - £525 per day: Orgtel: Test Lead, London, Investment Banking, Technical ...