Information  X 
Enter a valid email address

PUMA VCT plc (PUA)

  Print      Mail a friend

Friday 28 April, 2006

PUMA VCT plc

Final Results

PUMA VCT plc
28 April 2006


For immediate release                                              28 April 2006

                                  Puma VCT plc


Preliminary Final Results for the Year Ended 31 December 2005


Highlights
     
•    £20.4 million subscribed in Puma VCT plc and Puma VCT II plc on flotation, 
     which jointly invest pro rata to their respective sizes - approximately 
     60:40.

•    NAV per share of 104.9p for Puma VCT plc at year end (up 7.0% since
     inception).  NAV 109.1p at 31 March 2006.

•    Three qualifying investments made in 2005, totalling £2.425 million
     between the 2 VCTs.

•    Three further qualifying investments of £1.63 million by the 2 VCTS
     following the period end, with further transactions in negotiation.

•    Strong performance of alternative asset investments during and since
     the year end.


Sir Aubrey Brocklebank Bt of Puma VCT plc said:

'The first period of trading has been a successful one.  The non-qualifying
investments have performed strongly, delivering good risk adjusted returns,
whilst the qualifying investments have also shown gains.  Opportunities, both
for additional investments in qualifying companies and for appreciation of our
existing portfolio, appear encouraging and we therefore view the future with
confidence.'


Enquiries

Shore Capital                         020 7408 4090
Chris Ring
Graham Shore


Citigate Dewe Rogerson                020 7638 9571
Sarah Gestetner
Fiona Mulcahy


Notes to Editors

Puma VCT plc is managed by Shore Capital's successful fund management team. The
Company's investment objective is to achieve high distributions to shareholders.
It will invest in a diversified portfolio of smaller companies, including both
AIM/OFEX-traded and unquoted companies, selecting companies which Shore Capital
believes will have a relatively lower risk profile than is typical for their
size whilst having the opportunity for value appreciation. Initially, whilst
suitable VCT Qualifying Companies are being identified, the Investment Manager
invests the Company's funds in a range of investments intended to generate a
positive return, including funds of hedge funds and other products which aim to
achieve an absolute return. The VCT will continue to hold a proportion of such
products after building up the desired holdings of VCT Qualifying Companies.

Chairman's Statement

The first period of trading for Puma VCT plc (the Company) has been a successful
one.  Although this period has largely been concerned with fund raising I am
pleased to report that at the year-end the Company's net asset value per share
('NAV') stood at 104.85p. This is a rise of 6.85p (7.0%) since inception before
the inclusion of performance fees.

Puma VCT plc and Puma VCT II plc jointly invest in proportion to their
respective fundraisings.


Venture capital investments

Three qualifying investments (Cadbury House, Patsystems and @UK) were
successfully completed by the Company's year-end.

The Company jointly invested £1.2 million with Puma VCT II plc in Cadbury House
Hotel & Country Club.  Cadbury House is a major venue for weddings, conferences
and banqueting in the Bristol area with a well-established fitness centre on 14
acres of freehold grounds.  Situated 10 minutes from Bristol International
Airport, it is undergoing a major refurbishment to construct a new deluxe
leisure and fitness centre, a 65 room hotel wing and to upgrade the existing
banqueting facilities.  It has planning permission to increase the number of
rooms in the hotel to 65, from its original 50, which has had a significant
impact on the value of the Company's investment in Cadbury House.

We have jointly invested £525,000 with Puma VCT II plc in a qualifying AiM
company, Patsystems plc, involved in the development, distribution and support
of software enabling the electronic trading of financial products on global
trading exchanges.

With Puma VCT II plc, we have jointly invested £700,000 in pre-IPO financing
into @UK plc.  @UK provides an e-nablement service to suppliers of a number of
Local Authorities throughout the UK, including suppliers to schools and central
council departments.  Just before year-end, @UK was listed on AiM which has
resulted in the Company showing a large unrealised gain in its investment.

At 31 December 2005, the Company's qualifying portfolio had a total cost of
£1,438,000. Despite being its first year, the qualifying portfolio was valued at
£1,917,000 resulting in an unrealised gain of £479,000.  Further details are set
out in the Investment Manager's Report.


Non-qualifying investments

The Investment Manager's aim is to generate an absolute return on non-qualifying
investments on funds not invested in qualifying companies.  We are extremely
pleased with the appreciation of its non-qualifying portfolio, its value of
£7,565,000 increasing from a cost of £6,902,000 resulting in unrealised gains of
£663,000.


Results and dividend

Gross revenue for the period was £259,000 and net revenue gain after taxation
was £65,000.  The Board does not propose a dividend for the period.


Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Company will be held at Bond Street House, 14
Clifford Street, London, W1S 4JU on 26 May 2006 at 3:00pm.


Outlook

Opportunities, both for additional investments in qualifying companies and for
appreciation of our existing portfolio, appear encouraging and we view the
future with confidence.


Sir Aubrey Brocklebank Bt
Chairman



Investment Manager's Report


Overall Performance

Following one of the most successful new VCT launches in the last tax year, the
Company has delivered very strong returns with the net asset value per share of
your Company having increased by 7.0 per cent. (6.0 per cent. net of performance
fees) in the 8-9 months since launch. This compares very favourably to the FTSE
AiM index which fell by 4 per cent. between 6 April 2005, the start of the tax
year, and the end of December 2005.  This performance puts the Company well on
track to deliver the net 120 pence to investors targeted at launch, which would
be a post-tax return of 14.9 per cent. p.a. on the 60 pence net cost to
investors.

This strong performance has been achieved by a combination of gains in the
qualifying portfolio and strong delivery from the manager's innovative approach
to the non qualifying investments where the manager's Hedge Fund Strategy made a
significant contribution out-performing their benchmark indices. The hedge fund
returns have been achieved with low volatility (a normal measure of risk) in
keeping with the manager's focus on relatively lower risk opportunities. The
portfolio of hedge funds has continued to show excellent progress in 2006.
Property related investments are also performing well for the non qualifying
portfolio with investments in The Hotel Corporation and Orchid Developments
Group Limited (Orchid) both showing large gains. The investment in Orchid has
been realised since the year end at a profit of £31,000 (a 21 per cent. gain).

The performance since launch demonstrates the benefits of our strategy and
positioning.


Activity

The first 8-9 months saw three qualifying investments completed with £2.43m
invested between the Company and Puma VCT II plc. Despite high levels of IPO
activity on the AiM market during the period since launch, only one of these
investments was into an AiM quoted company (Patsystems plc) with the investment
also being part of a secondary funding round rather than an IPO. This was
because we had concerns about the valuations of many of the VCT qualifying AiM
IPO's which we considered to be high. Instead we focussed on identifying private
companies which met our investment criteria including strong management, robust
growth, a degree of asset backing and a sensible valuation. Of the three
qualifying investments, two are already showing good gains.

The Company's first investment was in Cadbury House Hotel and Country Club plc
('Cadbury'), a major venue for weddings, conferences and dinner dances near
Bristol.  Originally constructed as a private residence in 1790, Cadbury sits in
14 acres of freehold property, located midway between Bristol and
Weston-super-Mare. It also has a leisure and fitness facility with 1,600 members
which is to be replaced with a new leisure complex as part of a major
re-development of its 14 acre site including the construction of a hotel wing.
Cadbury has successfully applied for consent to increase the size of the hotel
within the same proposed building shell. An independent professional valuation
shows that this should add considerably to the value of the development when
complete, with a consequent increase in the value of the Company's investment.

The Company invested in @UK plc ('@UK') on a pre-IPO basis at a discount to the
IPO price.  Following its successful IPO in December 2005, the investment in @UK
is showing an uplift in value.  @UK is the UK's leading developer and provider
of software products which facilitate e-procurement between public sector bodies
and their suppliers. @UK's proven technology enables a more efficient process
for tendering, ordering, invoicing and purchase administration by moving these
functions to their proprietary electronic platform. @UK's system has been
selected by over 40 public sector bodies, including nearly half of the county
councils in England. Several education authorities and NHS trusts have also
employed @UK's technology. In addition, @UK was selected by central Government
to participate in 'Zanzibar', an e-marketplace to be used by Government
departments.

During August the Company invested in Patsystems ('Pats'), a provider of trading
and exchange systems to the global derivatives markets. The company was floated
at the beginning of 2000 and is now only one of a handful of companies which
dominate this industry. Pats has recently turned cash flow positive for the
first time and earnings quality is high with recurring revenues amounting to
approximately 85% of total revenues. Although the share price performance has
been muted since the investment was made, we feel that Pats is well placed to
play a key role in the expected industry consolidation and in so doing, create
further value for shareholders.


Qualifying Portfolio Valuation Policy

The unquoted investment has been valued in accordance with the guidelines issued
by the British Venture Capital Association.  Holdings in companies traded on AiM
are valued on the basis of bid market prices on 30 December 2005.


Outlook

The Company has performed very well in the 8-9 months since launch and we expect
the portfolio of both qualifying and non qualifying investments to do well in
the year ahead. The deal flow for 2006 looks strong. The Company has closed
three further qualifying investments in 2006 totalling (between the 2 VCTs)
£1.63 million.  Further transactions are in negotiation. We will continue to
seek to identify opportunities in the AIM/OFEX markets where we believe pricing
entry levels will result in value to shareholders being delivered over time.  We
will also seek to structure investments in unquoted companies which provide both
a measure of downside protection and exposure to equity upside.


Shore Capital Limited

Investment Portfolio Summary
As at 31 December 2005

Investment                                        Valuation        Original Cost         Gain/(Loss)     Valuation as
                                                    £'000              £'000                £'000          % of NAV

Qualifying Investments

Cadbury House Hotel and Country                       1,052                712              340                 8.3%
Club plc*
Patsystems plc                                          275                311              (36)                2.2%
@UK plc                                                 590                415               175                4.7%

                                                      1,917              1,438               479               15.2%
Non - Qualifying Investments

Hedge funds and equity investments                    7,565              6,902               663               59.8%

Total investments                                     9,482              8,340             1,142               75.0%

Cash and other net assets                             3,192              3,192                 -               25.0%
                                                                                              
                                                     12,674             11,532             1,142             100.00%


* unquoted


Statement of Total Return
(incorporating the revenue account*) for the period ended 31 December 2005

                                                                                For the period
                                                                                5 November 2004 to
                                                                                31 December 2005

                                                                      Revenue             Capital              Total
                                                                      £'000               £'000                £'000

Gains on investments                                                       -                  887               887
Income                                                                   259                    -               259

                                                                         259                  887             1,146


Investment management fees                                                54                  162               216
Performance fees                                                          10                  107               117
Other expenses                                                           102                    -               102

                                                                         166                  269               435

Return on ordinary activities before                                      93                  618               711
taxation
Tax on return on ordinary activities                                    (28)                   28                 -

Return on ordinary activities after tax                                   65                  646               711
attributable to equity shareholders

Return per Ordinary Share (pence)                                      0.58p                5.78p             6.36p



All revenue and capital items in the above statement derive from continuing
operations.

*The revenue column of this statement is the profit and loss account of the
Company.

Revenue return per ordinary share is based on the net revenue after tax of
£65,000, in respect of 11,185,546 ordinary shares, being the weighted average
number of ordinary shares in issue during the period.

Capital return per ordinary share is based on the net capital profit after tax
of £646,000, in respect of 11,185,546 ordinary shares, being the weighted
average number of ordinary shares in issue during the period.


Balance Sheet
As at 31 December 2005
                                                                                             2005
                                                                                            £'000
Fixed Assets
Investments                                                                                 9,482

Current Assets
Trades in advance                                                                             494
Debtors                                                                                        21
Cash                                                                                        2,812

                                                                                            3,327
Creditors - amounts falling due within one year                                             (134)

Net Current Assets                                                                          3,193

Total Assets less Current Liabilities                                                      12,675
                                                                                              (1)
Creditors - amounts falling due after more than one year (including
convertible debt)

Net Assets                                                                                 12,674

Capital and Reserves
Called up share capital                                                                       121
Capital reserve - realised                                                                  (371)
Capital reserve - unrealised                                                                1,017
Other reserve                                                                                 117
Revenue reserve                                                                            11,790

Equity Shareholders' Funds                                                                 12,674


Net Asset Value per Ordinary Share                                                         104.85

Diluted Net Asset Value per Ordinary Share                                                 103.88


Net asset value per ordinary share is based on the net assets at the period end
and on 12,087,700 ordinary shares, being the number of ordinary shares in issue
at the period end.

Diluted net asset value per ordinary share is based on the net assets at the
period end and on 12,200,735 ordinary shares, being the total number of ordinary
shares in issue, on a fully diluted basis, at the period end.


Cash Flow Statement
For the period ended 31 December 2005
                                                                                         For the period
                                                                                     5 November 2004 to
                                                                                       31 December 2005
                                                                                                  £'000
Operating activities
Return on ordinary activities before taxation                                                        93
Investment management fee charged to capital                                                      (162)
Performance fee to be effected through share-based payment                                           10
Foreign exchange gain on cash                                                                        23
Increase in debtors                                                                                (21)
Increase in creditors                                                                               110

Net cash inflow from operating activities                                                            53

Capital expenditure and financial investment
Purchase of investments                                                                         (9,812)
Proceeds from sale of investments                                                                 1,502
Increase in trades in advance                                                                     (494)
Net realised loss on forward foreign exchange contracts                                           (284)

Net cash outflow from capital expenditure and financial                                         (9,088)
investment

Financing
Proceeds received from issue of ordinary share capital                                           12,088
Expenses paid for issue of share capital                                                          (242)
Proceeds received from issue of redeemable preference                                                50
shares
Redemption of redeemable preference shares                                                         (50)
Proceeds received from convertible loan notes                                                         1

Net cash inflow from financing                                                                   11,847

Increase in cash for the period                                                                   2,812

Reconciliation of net cash flow to movement in net funds
Increase in cash for the period                                                                   2,812
Net funds at start of the period                                                                      -

Net funds at end of the period                                                                    2,812



Notes to the Accounts
For the period ended 31 December 2005


Reconciliation of Movements in Equity Shareholders' Funds
                                                                                             2005
                                                                                             £'000

Proceeds of share issues pursuant to the offers for subscription                             12,088
Expenses of issue                                                                            (242)
Total return on ordinary activities after tax                                                711
Performance fee to be effected through share-based payment                                   117

                                                                                             12,674


Note

The financial information set out in the announcement does not constitute the
Company's statutory accounts for the period ended 31 December 2005.  The
statutory accounts for the period ended 31 December 2005 will be finalised on
the basis of the financial information presented by the directors in this
preliminary announcement and will be delivered to the Registrar of Companies
following the Company's Annual General Meeting.

A copy of the full annual report and financial statements for the period ended
31 December 2005 will be printed and posted to shareholders.  Copies will also
be available to the public at the registered office of the Company at Bond
Street House, 14 Clifford Street, London W1S 4JU




                      This information is provided by RNS
            The company news service from the London Stock Exchange END

FR FVLFLQZBZBBX                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

a d v e r t i s e m e n t