LONDON (SHARECAST) - “Three…two… one… letdown” was probably how some investors in the British satellite group, Avanti Communications, felt yesterday after the company unveiled a far from explosive set of full-year numbers.
Avanti’s pre-tax losses widened from £12.7m to £16m in the year ending June 30th, with revenues of £15m missing City expectations by about £3m. The numbers spooked investors, with the shares tumbling more than 18%, having touched 281.25p at one stage. However, in what should be seen as a vote of confidence in its future, directors at the company also spent thousands of pounds buying shares in the group yesterday. Co-founders David Williams and David Bestwick were among the big spenders, paying 24,705 pounds and 49,410 pounds to increase their holdings in the company. Brackenbury spent £14,625.
The Telegraph´s Questor team believes investors should look beyond yesterday’s falling share price and instead focus on the company’s potential to exploit demand for its services across high-growth regions such as Asia and Africa. Shareholders should hold on to their Avanti shares for now and put their trust in a company that appears to have sky-high ambitions.
Tempus in the Times writes that Diageo will hold its annual meeting next Wednesday and faces questions over two huge takeovers in growing economies. It is in talks to take a 25% stake in Indian company United Spirits as well as purchase the family-owned Jose Cuervo tequila brand from Mexico. Diageo’s share price has risen 24% since the start of the year and sells on a 17 times earnings multiple. Still, ”any further positive news, in not next week, could spark fresh impetus.”
Tempus discusses Providence Resources and its update yesterday from its Barryroe Field in the North Celtic Sea. Detailed analysis suggests that there are at least a billion barrels there and on a reasonable assumption a third or so can be recovered, suggesting 280m barrels. Providence is likely to farm out half its 80% stake to a bigger company that has the cash to develop the field. Its shares have risen from 205p at the start of the year to 700p yesterday, mainly on hopes for Barryroe. Any sensible metric for assets at such an early stage is hard to come by, but the company is at the sensible end of the oil exploration spectrum