Company News

ShareSoc launches Group for concerned shareholders in the Oxford Technology VCTs

The Oxford Technology VCT (OXT) and Oxford Technology 3 VCT (OTT) have announced that HMRC has withdrawn their VCT status. This has been done because one of the Venture Capital Trust rules is that no more than 15% of a fund can be invested in one company. Both these companies have a holding in Scancell, an AIM listed company, and the share price of Scancell rose rapidly so that the rule was inadvertently breached as a result of a small funding ...

Oxford Technology VCTs lose VCT status

The Oxford Technology VCT (OXT) and  Oxford Technology 3 VCT (OTT) have announced that HMRC has withdrawn their VCT status. This has been done because one of the Venture Capital Trust rules is that no more than 15% of a fund can be invested in one company. Both these companies have a holding in Scancell, an AIM listed company, and the share price of Scancell rose rapidly so that the rule was inadvertently breached in October 2013 which the company reported ...

Remuneration Policies and Baronsmead VCT 3

The new Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act requires public companies to take a vote on Remuneration Policy, i.e. a forwarded looking binding vote for the next three years, as opposed to the non-binding retrospective one on the Remuneration Report with which we are all familiar. The latter will still be present, and investors might worry that the former will be a long-winded and tedious document that they will need to plough through (rather like the multi-page Remuneration Reports from large companies). There have ...

Analysts forecasts and Persimmon

Why are stock market analysts forecasts so varied? Or to put it another way, why are they so useless as a reliable predictor of the future? This question came to mind when looking at their recommendations after Persimmon issued their final results on the 25th February. Persimmon is of course a house building company. So it's operating in a well established sector where business trends are well researched and well known. Indeed house prices are dinner table conversations and the level of ...

Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust reduces fees

The Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust has announced that the management fees paid to Baillie Gifford are to be reduced. They are coming down from  0.32% to 0.30% of net assets per annum. This reduction is surely to be welcomed, and there is no performance fee at this trust. The Chairman of the company, John Scott,  said: "Both the Board and Managers are keenly aware that low charges have a major impact on long term returns especially when compounding is taken into account.  ...

Stop losses and shorting – Techinvest caught out with Blinkx

Stop losses are a way that many investors use to limit the downside risk on stock market investments. They help to counter the "loss aversion" psychological trait that encourages you to continue holding a stock because you have fallen in love with it whereas everyone else is seeing it differently, or may have some information that you do not. But as that well respected publication Techinvest has just found out, there is a significant problem when there is an active shorting campaign ...

Royal Bank of Scotland – more losses and downsizing

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) announced yet another set of disappointing results yesterday (27/2/2014). The share price closed down 8% on the day and is now way below what the Government paid for its majority stake in the business. New chief executive Ross McEwan announced the results after the previous one, Stephen Hester, had departed to sort out another basket case - RSA (formerly Royal and  Sun Alliance). It was certainly an opportune moment to move on. Last year RBS managed to ...

RM Plc and a Questionable Share Consolidation

RM, a provider of educational products and services to schools, has been through some troubled times of late. Revenue has been falling and is forecast to fall further after they made the courageous, if long overdue, decision to stop producing PCs. In addition there have been a number of changes among the directors in the last couple of years. But the company has been generating cash, and now has a healthy cash balance (£63m in the last accounts) so it has decided ...

Pets at Home -one for pet lovers?

Pets at Home Group is one of the few upcoming IPOs that will be open to retail investors. A "pre-announcement" that gives some details of the float has already been issued. Financial information so far supplied is not detailed but revenue was £598 last year from 369 retail stores and 246 small animal veterinary surgeries. The retail stores often include in-store grooming salons (for pets of course, not their owners). The business is currently owned by KKR and they seemed to have ...

ShareSoc Companies Seminar Report 2014-02-20

  This a very brief note on the ShareSoc Companies Seminar last night. The companies presenting were NewRiver Retail, Ilika, DotDigital and IS Solutions. They were all interesting companies in different ways, and there is nothing better than hearing from the horse's mouth what the management have to say about their own businesses. Note that ShareSoc is now running these seminars regularly so as to enable private investors to learn more about individual companies. The format enables you to hear directly from the senior ...