Business / Background:
Northgate is a UK based company that specialises in what they call “flexible rental” of smaller delivery vans to small businesses. My main interest in Northgate is not that I am so bullish on the UK and this sector, but that this company is somehow similar at least to the GoGetta part of Silverchef and I was looking for a peer company in order to be able to compare some metrics.
On a stand-alone basis, Northgate looks cheap:
Market cap: 570 mn GBP
Div. Yield 4,1%
A few days ago, Ashmore issued their 2016/2017 annual numbers and annual report. Ashmore was my first Emerging Market investment three and a half years ago and I think it makes sense to check and update the investment case.
Performance so far was not exciting. Including dividends, I earned around 21,6% over those 3,5 years in GBP, in EUR around 12,7%. Compared to my overall portfolio performance of ~+48% in the same time period, Ashmore was clearly a underperformer.
This is how I justified the potential investment case back then:
Some of my readers might have noticed that starting in the last year I have become more interested in Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies. Don’t worry, I will not
invest gamble with them but I do think it is important to understand what is going on in this area as this could change many things especially within financial services. As this blog functions primarily as my own diary, I have decided to do a few posts about my own learnings so far.
Bitcoin explained (maybe wrongly) in 10 Points:
Universal Insurance is an US-based P&C Insurance company which has been on my extended watch list for some time now. Why ? Well, the company always traded cheap (single digit P/E), was very profitable (~31% ROE for the last 9 years on average) and growing strongly year by year (400% over 9 years). So from the outside this looked like a cheap but highly profitable growth stock.
The main reason why I didn’t analyze the stock further is that Universal is a specialized homeowner insurance company which almost exclusively operates in Florida.
The company has a market cap of currently ~620 mn USD.
Not surprisingly Universal now is in a tough spot as “Irma” is creating havoc on Florida as I write this post. The stock price has dropped by around -30% by Friday:
It feels like decades ago but actually it is only 4 years ago when 3D printing was supposed to disrupt each and everyone.
Googling around, it is quite easy to find articles like this one in Forbes from October 2013:
We are a few years away from a printed economy – an economy in which 3D printing will have a major role in manufacturing. Up to now, 3D printing has been most useful in creating prototypes. But from the automotive to the electronics and toy industries, 3D printers will increasingly produce critical parts and finished products. What are some industries 3D printing will disrupt? Here’s our list of seven.
Some readers might have noticed that I sold my Lloyd’s banking position (with a loss of -16% in EUR7 -8,4% in GBP) in order to partially fund the new Record Plc position.
So why did I sell Lloyd’s ? For this it makes sense to go back to the original write up in April 2015. At the core, I liked the business and the bank as such and thought that government selling and election uncertainty provided an attractive entry price:
Anyway, to me Lloyd’s banking Group looks like an interesting special situation at this time. The share overhang and selling should clear at some time, profits will most likely increase. Over 3-4 years I look for an upside of around 50% plus dividends or ~15% p.a. if my assumptions turn out to be correct.
Disclaimer: This is not investment advice. PLEASE DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH !!!
A few months ago, fellow blogger Wexboy had a very interesting post on Record Plc, a UK based “specialty asset manager”. Go and read the whole thing, it is worth it.
I try to summarize the business & background in my own words:
Record Plc provides so-called “Currency overlay” asset management services. Currency overlays are in principle used for two reasons.
- To hedge an international investment portfolio into one single currency, usually the currency of the investor and/or
- To gain some extra yield by hedging currency exposures more “dynamically”
It is important to know that they do not manage the underlying assets, but “just” a derivative portfolio hedging the underlying assets and that they do not use their own balance sheet but act solely as an agent for the ultimate client.