SMALLER COMPANIES: Orbis directors find secure home for spare cash
Sunday 23 February 1997
The message from Mr Brentnall was blunt: "We thought the shares looked undervalued."
The group, currently capitalised at a little over pounds 27m, is still a minnow by stock market standards. But since Mr Brentnall arrived as chief executive in 1994, the shares have made rapid progress, only to hit something of a plateau over the last year. From 18p two years ago, to 38p on Friday, they remain below the 48p high they hit a year ago.
Some of the flatness follows a couple of profit warnings in the sector from the likes of Blick and Norbain.
However, the group produced a decent set of interim figures in December, when pre-tax profits rose 59 per cent to pounds 1.3m. Of this, pounds 397,000 of profit came from Estdale, and Intruder Detector Systems, the two most recent acquisitions by the company. Sales rose 49 per cent to pounds 12.6m.
In August, it paid pounds 2.35m for Estdale Integrated Systems, which designs, installs and maintains access control, closed-circuit television and integrated security systems.
Intruder Detector Systems has some promising attributes, which should see it make further good organic growth. The subsidiary supplies a complete security service for council property and housing associations, guarding empty properties. A temporary radio transmitting battery operated alarm is installed on the property, which is then monitored by the company. A 20-minute response time is guaranteed to the client. The market for this is rising, as councils become more eager to guard their vacant properties.
Bolt-on acquisitions will continue to feature as part of the strategy, while the integration of Galequest, bought for pounds 9m in 1995, continues on target. That process will be completed by 31 March, as promised.
Estdale will be earnings neutral for its first year, and there is no sign that this expectation will not be met.
Given management's vote of confidence, with cash, it would seem churlish to rate the shares as anything other than a buy.
richard phillips Copyright: IOS & Bloomberg
- 1 Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
- 2 Question Time's 'passionate highlander' is the William Wallace of the Better Together campaign
- 3 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
- 4 Tony Abbott embarrasses Australia by praising Japanese WWII military, ‘getting on the sake’ and posing for ‘crotch-shot’ photo opportunity
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
Instagram of US airport security chiefs: Lipstick knives and IED training kits among items seized
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Question Time's 'passionate highlander' is the William Wallace of the Better Together campaign
Israel-Gaza crisis: Eight killed in Gaza Strip cafe while watching World Cup semi-final
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
There’s a nasty smell in the political air – and it’s coming from the Tories
iJobs Money & Business
£50000 - £70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Business Analyst Consultant (Fina...
£300 - £350 per day + competitive: Orgtel: My client, a leading bank, is curre...
£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension, 25 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A highly ...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education are seeking a Fi...