Curtis Banks hails robust performance despite Covid disruption
Pensions specialist Curtis Banks Group said it enjoyed strong trading during 2020, despite the impact of Covid-19.
The AIM-listed firm, which specialises in self-invested personal pensions, said that "despite the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the group delivered a robust trading performance throughout 2020, both operationally and financially".
It pointed to the acquisitions of Sipp-provider Talbot and Muir and fintech Dunstan Thomas during the year, as well as the introduction of a new fee charging structure for clients.
Looking ahead, the firm said: "These initiatives will reduce the proportional contribution of interest income to total revenue and improve the overall quality and diversity of earnings across the group."
Will Self, chief executive, added: "Despite the challenging environment, we refused to be downbeat and remained focused on our growth strategy. As a result, we managed to execute key strategic initiatives and deliver a strong and robust performance in 2020.
"We will continue to build a business that looks set to benefit from macro-trends, namely greater numbers of UK savers and an aging population."
As at 1415 GMT, shares in Curtis - which is scheduled to announced full-year results on 18 March - were off 2% at 224.0p.
Stuart Duncan, analyst at broker Peel Hunt, said: "Proving the resilience of the business, we assume that profits for the year are in line our expectations. We are forecasting pre-tax profits/earnings per share of £12.6m/16.8p, while consensus stands at £13.5m. Based on December 2021 estimates, the stock is now trading on around 11 x. To us, this looks a very attractive valuation."
Peel Hunt has a ‘buy’ recommendation on the stock and a target price of 310p.