Over 100 shareholders in the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), supported and coordinated by ShareSoc and UKSA, have requisitioned a resolution to install a new "Shareholder Committee" at the company that could include representatives of retail investors.
In 1983 the current Chairman and Chief Executive took control of a company flying fresh flowers across the channel. This has been developed into a business with a fleet of UK based passenger aircraft specialising in package holidays and charter flights. The leisure travel division is complemented by a logistics division distributing temperature controlled products for the food industry. Revenues have grown at 20% pa over the last 5 years to reach £1.4bn. The company appears to be performing well but is there a risk that it will over-reaching itself? Shareholders’ equity is £319m and orders have recently been placed for c. £2bn of new aircraft. How robust is the strategy that underpins this investment?
The text of the Financial Reporting Council
20 September 2016
Alderman the Lord Mountevans
Lord Mayor of the City of London
The ownerless corporation, so christened by Lord Myners more than 10 years ago, is upon us. In its response to a BEIS consultation on corporate governance UKSA has drawn attention, once again, to the scandalous erosion of corporate control arising from the unrestrained spread of multi-owner nominee accounts (sometimes called pooled nominee accounts).
Park Group claims to be “the UK’s leading multi-retailer gift voucher and prepaid gift card business.” It started in 1966 as a savings scheme for Christmas hampers and has built on that base to reach a revenue total last year of £302.5m. Cash conversion is good with a steadily increasing dividend currently yielding 3.7%. The Chief Executive talks of ‘a steady rise in billings’ but the record shows a setback in 2014 due to weakness in the retail sector. So how well is the company really performing, what is the outlook for the future and how easy is it from the accounts to follow what is really going on?
This is an unusual and profitable company which, although quoted on AIM, is based in Israel. It has an attractive dividend policy although smaller non-Israeli holders are subject to withholding tax. But what does the company actually do, how does it make money and is it run primarily for the benefit of the directors and founders rather than the shareholders?
Would that all AIM companies could be persuaded to copy SQS. The presentation of the report makes it much easier to read than its UK counterparts and the high level of disclosure – happily confined to the notes – would satisfy most analysts.
Full Sprue review here .
This company sells a range of Chinese made smoke and carbon dioxide alarms in Europe, principally in France and in the UK. Profits would have been significantly higher had it not been for adverse exchange rate movements and a large warranty provision. Should the directors have anticipated these problems and taken more effective avoiding action?
The public will have been shocked by the revelation that Persimmon management are in line for a payment of £600million. This is no surprise to UKSA, who warned of this outcome when the Persimmon Long Term Incentive Plan (LTIP) was installed in 2012 and have since continually promoted the regulatory changes necessary to prevent this and similar abuses.
Continuing its investigation into the quality of the top 100 AIM companies’ annual reports, the UK Shareholders’ Association finds uncertainties in the Abcam report and an astonishing but unexplained waste of shareholders’ money by Hargreaves Services’ directors.