Investment: Shy Anglo sidles into the market light

No Pain, No Gain: Our Man's Portfolio

SOME COMPANIES enjoy obscurity. Little-known Anglo Pacific is one which seems to have determinedly kept a low profile. Yet the mining group has recovered from a run of losses and seems to have settled down with profits holding above pounds 2m; it has, for good measure, just paid its first dividend since 1988.

The last profits of what really is an Anglo-Australian group were pounds 2.3m, with Australia and the UK, or to be more precise Scotland, making similar contributions.

North of the border, Anglo runs a sand quarry in Fife and a marble quarry in Sutherland. It also embraces a talc deposit in Shetland. The Australian spread involves two Queensland coal mines where it collects royalties on sales. There is also a 3.9 per cent interest in quoted Brancote Holdings which has a promising gold prospect in Argentina.

The company's activities are not perhaps particularly exciting in these high tech days when a loss-making venture plugged in to the right connections can enjoy a dizzy stock market following.

Yet Anglo offers encouraging signs of improving prospects. The Fife quarry sells sand to bottle-makers and overall sales are "robust", with higher value sales growing. The marble operation supplies materials for road making as well as higher margin decorative stone to garden centres and the building industry.

At the talc site there is talk of joint developments or even a sale. There have been rumours that the RTZ mining giant is interested.

And in Australia the income from coalmining should be growing. One of the two mines was out of commission for most of 1998 - Anglo's last reported financial year - due to an industrial dispute. It has since been sold by Atlantic Richfield to RTZ and should now be working at full production.

Anglo's recently published accounts cover 1998; the delay in producing them is largely due to the Australian connection. Chairman Peter Boycott expects the group to produce higher profits and, like many company heads with quoted shares for takeover ammunition, is on the lookout for acquisitions.

But he would not have to rely on offering shares. Anglo's Australian royalty income provides a steady cash flow and its return to the dividend list, with a token 0.1p a share payment, cost only pounds 84,000.

Besides trading prospects, there are other signs of developments at so- shy Anglo. The company, which arrived on the old Unlisted Securities Market in 1984, has changed financial advisers and stockbrokers and its biggest shareholder, the South African Standard Bank, has picked up just more than one million shares, lifting its interest to 15.9 per cent. Directors have also added to their shareholdings.

Anglo came under new management three years ago. Since then overheads have been cut and the group operations tidied up.

The shares topped 100p in Anglo's early stock market days. The intervening years have been unkind and the price started this year at 12.25p, despite share buybacks.

The results and dividend payment have pushed the shares to 17.5p highest for a couple of years but still a shade below the signalled price of directors' options.

On some yardsticks they look expensive, selling at more than 30 times last reported earnings but a more realistic calculation puts them on historic earnings of around eight; the shares should be a solid addition to the no pain, no gain portfolio.

the portfolio so far

Share Date tipped Price Price now

Allied Domecq 3/3/99 482.5p 551.5p Galliford 5/5/99 20p 21.5p Global 19/5/99 20p 20.25p Gowrings 7/4/99 103.5p 127.5p Montana 17/3/99 182.5p 219.5p Paramount 21/4/99 15p 21.5p Regal Hotel 24/2/99 29.5p 26p Safeway 14/4/99 248.5p 255p

Sport
German supporters (left) and Argentina fans
world cup 2014Final gives England fans a choice between to old enemies
Arts and Entertainment
Armando Iannucci, the creator of 'The Thick of It' says he has
tvArmando Iannucci to concentrate on US show Veep
Life and Style
Pepper, the 3ft 11in shiny box of circuits who can tell jokes and respond to human emotions
techDavid McNeill tests the mettle of one of the new generation of androids being developed in Tokyo
Arts and Entertainment
A still from the worldwide Dawn of the Planet of the Apes trailer debut
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
Four ski officials in Slovenia have been suspended following allegations of results rigging
sportFour Slovenian officials suspended after allegations they helped violinist get slalom place
News
14 March 2011: George Clooney testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during a hearing titled 'Sudan and South Sudan: Independence and Insecurity.' Clooney is co-founder of the Satellite Sentinel Project which uses private satellites to collect evidence of crimes against civilian populations in Sudan
people
Arts and Entertainment
Balaban is indirectly responsible for the existence of Downton Abbey, having first discovered Julian Fellowes' talents as a screenwriter
tvCast members told to lose weight after snacking on set
Life and Style
More than half of young adults have engaged in 'unwanted but consensual sexting with a committed partner,' according to research
tech
Life and Style
A binge is classed as four or more alcoholic drinks for women and five or more for men, consumed over a roughly two-hour period
tech
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Programme Support, Coms, Bristol, £300-350p/d

£300 - £350 per day + competitive: Orgtel: My client, a leading bank, is curre...

(Junior) IT Systems Administrator / Infrastructure Analyst

£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension, 25 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A highly ...

Finance Officer

Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education are seeking a Fi...

Accounts Payable

£12 - £15 per hour: Cameron Kennedy Recruitment: Excellent opportunity to join...

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice