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PUMA VCT plc (PUA)

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Thursday 26 April, 2007

PUMA VCT plc

Preliminary Results

PUMA VCT plc
26 April 2007


For immediate release                                          26 April 2007

                                  Puma VCT plc

    Unaudited Preliminary Final Results for the Year Ended 31 December 2006

Highlights


•  Fully diluted NAV per share of 110.32p for Puma VCT plc at year end (up 12.6% 
   since inception, up 6.2% for the year).  Unaudited fully diluted NAV of 
   115.29p as at 28 February 2007.


•  Five qualifying investments made in 2006, totaling £2.2 million for Puma VCT 
   plc.


•  Dividend of 0.9p proposed per Ordinary Share.


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


Sir Aubrey Brocklebank Bt of Puma VCT plc said:


'The year to 31 December 2006 has shown progress with a number of qualifying and
non qualifying investments contributing significantly to performance. We
continue to look for qualifying opportunities which meet our criteria to ensure
that we meet the minimum targets for qualifying investments of 70%. In the
meantime, we are confident in the prospects for our existing portfolio of
companies.'


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 and Plus Markets 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 year to 31 December 2006 has shown satisfactory progress with a number of
qualifying and non qualifying investments contributing well to performance.  I
am pleased to report that at the year end the Company's net asset value per
share ('NAV'), after deducting performance fees, stood at 110.32 p.  This is a
rise of 6.44p, or 6.2% over the year and a rise of 12.32p, or 12.6% since
inception. Progress to date in 2007 has also been pleasing with the unaudited
NAV after performance as at 28 February 2007 standing at 115.29p, an increase of
4.5% since the year end.


Puma VCT plc and Puma VCT II plc have jointly invested in proportion to their
respective fundraising throughout the year.


Venture capital investments



The Company completed four new qualifying investments (Clarity Commerce
Solutions plc, Interactive World plc, Stocklight Limited and Vertu Motors plc)
and provided follow on financing into an existing investment, Cadbury House
Hotel & Country Club during the year. The Company also remains invested in
Patsystems and @UK, both qualifying holdings.



Puma VCT plc's first two investments of 2006 were both in AiM listed companies.
Clarity Commerce Solutions Plc is a leading supplier of software and services to
the leisure and hospitality sectors. This was followed by an investment in
Interactive World Plc, which distributes digital media content to mobile phones
via the internet.



We have seen impressive progress in Cadbury House Hotel & Country Club plc .
This was Puma VCT plc's first qualifying investment, completed in June 2005. The
development has been going to plan and budget and the business has been
performing very strongly. Puma VCT Plc took the opportunity to invest a further
£1 million in October as part of a refinancing of their £12 million loan
facility.



Towards the end of 2006, Puma VCT plc invested in Stocklight Limited, also an
unquoted company. Stocklight is the parent of Bloomsbury Auctions Limited,
Europe's largest specialist book auctioneer. The cash will be used as
development capital.



Puma VCT plc's final investment of 2006 was in Vertu Motors Plc. Vertu's
strategy is to acquire and consolidate motor dealerships. To pursue this aim it
raised an initial £25 million from VCTs and institutions.



Aside from Cadbury House, the Company's other qualifying investments at 31
December 2005, were @UK and Patsystems. The companies, both listed on AiM,
delivered mixed performances during 2006. This is discussed further in the
Investment Manager's report.



At 31 December 2006, the Company's qualifying portfolio had a total cost of
£3,682,000 and was valued at £3,904,000 resulting in an unrealised gain of
£222,000. Further details are set out in the Investment Manager's Report.



Non-qualifying investments



The Investment Manager has continued to invest the non-qualifying investments on
an absolute return basis.  We are extremely pleased with the appreciation in the
non-qualifying portfolio. The market value was £9,004,000 as at 31 December 2006
against an underlying book cost of £7,684,000.



Results and dividend



The total return for the period was £1,407,000 and the net total return for the
year was £779,000.  Gross revenue for the period was £306,000 and net revenue
return after taxation was £74,000.  The Board proposes a final revenue dividend
of 0.9p per ordinary share for the year. The ex-dividend date will be 02 May
2007 and the record date 04 May 2007. Payment will be made to shareholders by 01
June 2007.


Annual General Meeting



The Annual General Meeting of the Company will be held at Bond Street House, 14
Clifford Street, London, W1S 4JU on 17 May 2007.  Notice of the Annual General
Meeting and Form of Proxy have been sent separately to the annual accounts.



Outlook



We continue to look for qualifying opportunities that meet our criteria to
ensure that we meet the minimum targets for qualifying investments of 70%. In
the meantime, we are confident in the prospects for our existing portfolio of
companies.



Sir Aubrey Brocklebank Bt

Chairman



Investment Manager's Report

Overall Performance



In its second year, the Company has continued to deliver strong returns with the
net asset value per share of your Company having increased by 7.7 per cent. (6.2
per cent. net of performance fees) in the year. This compares very favourably to
the FTSE AiM index which rose by 0.8 per cent.  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 60p net
cost to investors. Subsequent to the year end, the Company's investments have
continued to perform well, resulting in an NAV at 28 February 2007 of 115.29p.



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. AiM
listed property related investments also performed well for the non qualifying
portfolio with investments in The Hotel Corporation plc, Puma Brandenburg
Limited and Dawnay Day Treveria plc showing strong gains.



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



Activity



The Company completed five qualifying investments during the year. This included
four new investments and a follow-on investment in Cadbury House Hotel & Country
Club plc. We retained the qualifying investment in Patsystems and @UK but sold
our small holding in Debts.co.uk plc profitably.



In our report for the year ending 31 December 2005 we expressed our concerns
about the valuations of many of the VCT qualifying AiM IPOs, which we considered
to be too high. In 2006, although our focus was still on identifying private
companies, which fitted our lower risk investment mandate, we also invested in
two AiM IPOs and an AiM placing where we felt valuations were more realistic and
risk was lower.  Having the ability to structure deals to invest in private
companies and also participate in AiM issues widens the net of potential
investments in addition to providing a better balance of risks within the
qualifying portfolio.



Puma VCT plc and Puma VCT II plc jointly invest in proportion to their
respective fundraising and along with Puma VCT III plc and Puma VCT IV plc which
raised funds in the first quarter of 2006 have also generally co-invested
together. We have found that having the ability to syndicate larger investments
within the Puma VCT family makes our offering more attractive for potential
private equity investments.


Puma VCT plc invested in three AiM quoted companies during the year: Clarity
Commerce Solutions plc, Interactive World plc and Vertu Motors plc, discussed
further below.



The Company made its first investment of 2006 in Clarity Commerce Solutions Plc.
Clarity is an AiM quoted supplier of business management software focused on the
leisure industry (pubs, hotels, cinemas, restaurants etc). Puma VCT plc invested
£142,000 in April 2006 on the back of the company winning some significant
contracts, providing a high level of recurring revenues. Although the share
price performance has been a little disappointing, we believe that the
underlying business is sound and we expect share price appreciation going
forward, as long as management execute to plan. Related to this last point, in
April 2007, a number of shareholders requisitioned an Extraordinary General
Meeting to effect a change in management. We expect further developments in the
near future and are hopeful that this will be positive for the company.



Puma VCT plc invested £103,000 in Interactive World Plc in May as part of its
fundraising on admission to AiM. Interactive World is a digital content
provider, principally to mobile phone handsets. It has an exclusive agreement
with the Sports Group and therefore differentiates itself from other content
aggregators and distributors. In addition, the business is highly cash flow
generative and the offer was at an attractive valuation. The company trades on
an attractive yield and we expect further share price appreciation.



The Company's third AiM investment of 2006 was Vertu Motors plc. Puma VCT plc
invested £593,000 as part of the £25 million fundraising in December. Vertu is
pursuing a buy and build strategy in the motor dealership industry. It was an
attractive opportunity for Puma VCT plc as we were backing a highly experienced
management team to consolidate a fragmented industry which will be supported by
substantial property assets. Vertu's first acquisition of Bristol Street Motors
(after the year end) required an additional £26 million fundraising at a 25%
premium to our entry price. We believe this will underpin our investment whilst
providing a solid base for further acquisitions.



Puma VCT plc made two investments in private companies; Cadbury House & Country
Club plc and Stocklight Limited.



In June 2005 Puma VCT plc participated in a £4 million equity investment in
Cadbury House & Country Club plc. Since then the company has performed well. The
health club opened on time in May 2006 and impressively grew its membership from
1,600 to over 3,000 at the year end (ahead of forecasts). The banqueting and
conferencing facilities were also developed to budget in time for a busy summer
of weddings, which led to a successful Christmas period. The last stage in the
development is the hotel which should be open for business in May 2007. The
hotel will now be 72 rooms (from 63) and fitted out to a four star standard. We
have revalued upwards our original investment in Cadbury House based on an
independent professional valuation of the revised development which reflects the
increase in rooms and improved rating. Given the progress made we welcomed the
opportunity to invest an additional £1 million in October, as part of a £12
million refinancing of bank debt. Although this investment will not participate
in the valuation uplifts we are seeing in the original investment it enabled us
to invest in a business which we know well and where we have strong security.



Stocklight Limited is the parent company of Bloomsbury Auctions, a fast growing
auction house. Puma VCT plc invested £407,000 as part of a £2 million
fundraising together with Puma VCT II plc, Puma VCT III plc and Puma VCT IV plc
to fund the further expansion of Bloomsbury Auctions. Growth is expected to come
from increasing the number of specialist departments and being able to attract
bigger and higher value lots by offering advances to potential vendors. The
company is also expanding into overseas markets. Although the growth prospects
of Bloomsbury Auctions were an attraction, primarily we liked the deal as it was
structured to provide good security on the investment.



Puma VCT plc retained two investments in its qualifying portfolio, completed
during 2005: @UK plc and Patsystems plc. Patsystems continued to perform well
during the year, picking up new clients and generally meeting market
expectations. They have carved out a strong niche for themselves, providing
software within the derivatives trading market, and have grown on the back of
strong growth within this industry. High levels of recurring revenues should
underpin the price and make it a potentially attractive acquisition target.
Unfortunately @UK has proved disappointing. Despite an initial uplift following
its IPO on AiM, in December 2005, the company struggled to meet its initial
forecasts and its share price has reflected this failure. We believe the worst
of the news is now behind it and with a new CEO the company has a reasonably
robust platform to meet its more conservative forecasts.



Outlook

We are pleased with the performance of the Company over the year and believe
that we now have a good spread of qualifying companies. We also expect the
portfolio of non qualifying investments to continue to do well in the year
ahead. 2007 will see an increase in the rate and size of investments in
qualifying investments and we are confident that we will be able to identify
both private and AiM quoted companies which will satisfy Puma VCT plc's
investment mandate.

Shore Capital Limited


Unaudited Investment Portfolio Summary
As at 31 December 2006

                                                                                  Unaudited

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

Qualifying Investments - Unquoted

Cadbury House Hotel and Country Club plc              2,100              1,711                    389              15%
Stocklight Limited                                      407                407                     -                3%

Qualifying Investments - Quoted

@UK plc                                                 157                415                 (258)                1%
Clarity Commerce Solutions plc                          116                142                  (26)                1%
Interactive World plc                                   109                103                     6                1%
Patsystems plc                                          353                311                    42                3%
Vertu Motors Plc                                        662                593                    69                5%

Total Qualifying Investments                          3,904              3,682                   222               29%

Non - Qualifying Investments

Hedge funds and equity investments                    9,004              7,684                 1,320               66%

Total Investments                                    12,908             11,366                 1,542               95%

Cash and other net assets                               739                739                                      5%
                                                                                                               -

                                                     13,647             12,105                 1,542              100%


Unaudited Income Statement
For the year ended 31 December 2006

                                       Unaudited                                             Audited
                                                 Year ended                      For the period 5 November 2004 to 31   
                                           31 December 2006                                             December 2005
                            Revenue        Capital         Total                 Revenue        Capital         Total
                              £'000          £'000         £'000                   £'000          £'000         £'000


Gains on investments              -          1,101         1,101                       -            887           887

Income                          306              -           306                     259              -           259

                                306          1,101         1,407                     259            887         1,146


Investment management fees       79            236           315                      54            162           216

Performance fees                 19            175           194                      10            107           117

Other expenses                  119              -           119                     102              -           102

                                217            411           628                     166            269           435

Return on ordinary               89            690           779                      93            618           711
activities before taxation

Tax on return on ordinary      (15)             15             -                    (28)             28             -
activities

Return on ordinary
activities after
tax attributable to equity       
shareholders                     74            705           779                      65            646           711

Basic and diluted return      0.61p          5.83p         6.44p                   0.58p          5.78p         6.36p
per Ordinary Share (pence)


All revenue and capital items in the above statement derive from continuing
operations.  No operations were acquired or discontinued in the year.



No separate Statement of Total Recognised Gains and Losses is presented as all
gains and losses are included in the Income Statement.


Unaudited Balance Sheet

As at 31 December 2006
                                                               Unaudited                                      Audited
                                                                   As at                                        As at
                                                        31 December 2006                             31 December 2005
                                                                   £'000                                        £'000
Fixed Assets

Investments                                                       12,908                                        9,482

Current Assets
Trades in advance                                                      -                                          494
Debtors                                                               76                                           21
Cash at bank and in hand                                             881                                        2,812

                                                                     957                                        3,327

Creditors - amounts falling due within one year                    (217)                                        (134)

Net Current Assets                                                   740                                        3,193

Total Assets less Current Liabilities                             13,648                                       12,675


Creditors - amounts falling due after more than                      (1)                                          (1)
one year (including convertible debt)

Net Assets                                                        13,647                                       12,674

Capital and Reserves
Called up share capital                                              121                                          121
Capital reserve - realised                                           108                                        (371)
Capital reserve - unrealised                                       1,243                                        1,017
Other reserve                                                        311                                          117
Revenue reserve                                                   11,864                                       11,790

Equity Shareholders' Funds                                        13,647                                       12,674


Net Asset Value per Ordinary Share                               112.90p                                      104.85p

Diluted Net Asset Value per Ordinary Share                       110.32p                                      103.88p


Unaudited Cash Flow Statement

For the year ended 31 December 2006
                                                                           Unaudited                    Audited
                                                                          Year ended           For the period 5
                                                                    31 December 2006           November 2004 to
                                                                                               31 December 2005
                                                                               £'000                      £'000
Operating activities
Investment income received                                                       250                        238
Investment management fees paid                                                (228)                      (147)
Cash paid to Directors                                                          (21)                       (15)
Foreign exchange (loss)/gain on cash                                            (24)                         23
Other cash payments                                                             (89)                       (46)

Net cash (outflow)/inflow from operating activities                            (112)                         53

Capital expenditure and financial investment
Purchase of investments                                                      (6,512)                    (9,812)
Proceeds from sale of investments                                              3,670                      1,502
Decrease/(increase) in trades in advance                                         494                      (494)
Acquisition costs                                                                (4)                          -
Net realised gain/(loss) on forward foreign exchange contracts                   533                      (284)

Net cash outflow from capital expenditure and financial                      (1,819)                    (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 shares                       -                         50
Redemption of redeemable preference shares                                         -                       (50)
Proceeds received from issue of convertible loan notes                             -                          1

Net cash inflow from financing                                                     -                     11,847

Cash (outflow)/inflow in the year                                            (1,931)                      2,812

Reconciliation of net cash flow to movement in net funds
(Decrease)/increase in cash for the period                                   (1,931)                      2,812
Net cash at start of the period                                                2,812                          -

Net funds at the period end                                                      881                      2,812


Unaudited Reconciliation of Movements in Shareholders' Funds

For the year ended 31 December 2006

                                                                 Unaudited
                                                     For the year ended 31 December 2006

                                 Called up        Share   Capital      Capital                            Total
                                     share      premium  reserve-     reserve-     Other      Revenue     £'000
                                   capital      account  realised   unrealised   reserve      reserve
                                     £'000        £'000     £'000        £'000     £'000        £'000

At 1 January 2006                      121            -     (371)        1,017       117       11,790    12,674
Total recognised gains for the           -            -       479          226       194           74       973
year
At 31 December 2006                    121            -       108        1,243       311       11,864    13,647


                                                                   Audited
                                              For the period 5 November 2004 to 31 December 2005

                                 Called up        Share   Capital      Capital                            Total
                                     share      premium  reserve-     reserve-     Other      Revenue     £'000
                                   capital      account  realised   unrealised   reserve      reserve
                                     £'000        £'000     £'000        £'000     £'000        £'000

Share issues in the period             121       11,967         -            -         -            -    12,088
Expenses of share issues                 -        (242)         -            -         -            -     (242)
Total recognised gains/
(losses) for the period
                                         -            -     (371)        1,017       117           65       828
Capital reconstruction                   -     (11,725)         -            -         -       11,725         -
At 31 December 2005                    121            -     (371)        1,017       117       11,790    12,674


Unaudited Notes to the Accounts

For the year ended 31 December 2006


Change in accounting policies



This preliminary announcement has been prepared on the basis of the accounting
policies set out in the 2005 accounts, with the exception of the adoption of the
new Financial Reporting Standards ('FRS') 21-26, that have been issued by the
Accounting Standards Board as part of the convergence process between United
Kingdom Generally Accepted Accounting Practice with International Financial
Reporting Standards ('IFRS'). The adoption of these policies has not resulted in
any restatements of prior year figures.  All other accounting policies have been
applied consistently during the current and prior years.



Investments



Realised surpluses or deficits on the disposal of investments are taken to
realised capital reserves, and unrealised surpluses and deficits on the
revaluation of investment are taken to unrealised capital reserves.



All investments have been designated as fair value through profit or loss, and
recognized on the trade date and are initially measured at cost. Thereafter the
investments are measured at subsequent reporting dates at fair value. Listed
investments and investments traded on AiM are stated at bid price at the
reporting date.  Hedge funds, listed and unlisted, are valued at their
respective Net Asset Value per share at the reporting date.  Unlisted
investments are stated at Directors' valuation with reference to the
International Private Equity and Venture Capital Valuation Guidelines ('IPEVC'):


•        Investments which have been made within the last twelve months are
valued at cost except where the company's performance against plan is
significantly different from expectations on which the investment was made in
which case a change in its valuation is made as appropriate.


•        Where a company is in the early stage of development, it will normally
continue to be held at cost on the basis described above.



•        Where a company is well established after one year from the date of
investment the shares may be valued by applying a suitable price-earnings ratio
to that company's historical post tax earnings. The ratio used is based on a
comparable listed company or sector but discounted to reflect lack of
marketability. Alternative methods of valuation will include cost, provision
against cost or net asset value where such factors apply that make one of these
methods more appropriate.


Forwards/Hedging



The Company enters into forward contracts for the sale of foreign currencies in
order to hedge its exposure to fluctuations in currency rates in respect of some
of its investments.  These forward contracts are recorded at fair value through
profit and loss.  Any foreign exchange gain or loss is recorded by the Company
in the Capital Reserve - unrealised until settled.  Once realised, the gain or
loss is taken to the Capital Reserve - realised.



Basic and diluted return per Ordinary Share

                                                                   Unaudited                              Audited
                                                                                For the period 5 November 2004 to
                                                 Year ended 31 December 2006                     31 December 2005

                                            Revenue     Capital        Total      Revenue     Capital       Total
                                                                                 
Return for the period                        74,000     705,000      779,000       65,000     646,000     711,000

Weighted average number of shares        12,087,700  12,087,700   12,087,700   11,185,546  11,185,546  11,185,546

Return per Ordinary Share                     0.61p       5.83p        6.44p        0.58p       5.78p       6.36p


Net Asset Value per Ordinary Share
                                                                Unaudited                  Audited
                                                                  2006                      2005
                                                               Basic Diluted             Basic Diluted

Net assets                                                13,647,000 13,647,000     12,674,000 12,674,000

Number of  Ordinary Shares                                12,087,700 12,370,395     12,087,700 12,200,735

Net Assets Value per Ordinary Share (pence)                  112.90p 110.32p           104.85p 103.88p


Reconciliation of total return before capital expenditure and financing and
costs to net cash inflow from operating activities

                                                                           Unaudited      Audited
                                                                             2006          2005
                                                                            £'000         £'000

Total return before taxation                                                  779           711
Gains on investments                                                      (1,101)         (887)
Increase in debtors                                                          (55)          (21)
Increase in creditors                                                          95           110
Foreign exchange (loss)/gain on cash                                         (24)            23
Performance fee to be effected through share-based payment                    194           117

Net cash (outflow) /inflow from operating activities                        (112)            53


Note


The financial information set out in the announcement does not constitute the
Company's statutory accounts for the year ended 31 December 2006 or 2005.  The
financial information for the year ended 31 December 2005 is derived from the
statutory accounts for that year which have been delivered to the Registrar of
Companies. The auditors reported on those accounts. Their report was unqualified
and did not contain a statement under section 237 (2) or (3) of the Companies
Act 1985.  The statutory accounts for the year ended 31 December 2006 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 year ended 31
December 2006 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.

The financial information contained within this preliminary announcement was
approved by the board on 25 April 2007.


                      This information is provided by RNS
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