Friday 20 July 2018 | ShareProphets: The one stop source for breaking news, expert analysis, and podcasts on fast-moving AIM and LSE listed shares
Hello, Share Saddlers. I’m ashamed to admit that one of the main reasons I bought Whitbread (WTB) shares is that it came with a deal for two hotel nights at Premier Inns for the price of one. We are testing the waters on this one with a romantic weekend break later this month.
A couple of larger cap favs of mine to write about today following new newsflow. I see that the ITV (ITV) COO/CFO has decided to exit into the night and retire. He has been at the company for a decade and no doubt he has made a pretty penny for his efforts. I do not think there is any particular fire here and he will hang around until a successor has been appointed. However my instinct is that there is another story here.
I concluded my last write-up on Premier Inn and Costa Coffee owner Whitbread (WTB) hoping for an event inspired by both activist shareholders on the company's ownership register and the new right-on Chairman Crozier who previously had set a fire below both ITV (ITV) and Royal Mail (RMG). Well today - finally – it delivered with the announcement that 'Whitbread will pursue a demerger of Costa, providing shareholders with investments in two distinct, focused and market-leading businesses'.
I seem to have written about one of my 2017 'tips of the year' Whitbread (WTB) more in 2018 than I did during its twelve months in the sun. A couple of weeks ago I observed that the appointment of the new Chairman, combined with an activist shareholder on the books could well tip the company over the edge in terms of thinking about the value creation option of splitting its two largest and most successful franchises Costa Coffee and Premier Inn. I also mused that the market reaction to this would push the shares back to trading at £50+.
I have already given my excuses concerning my 2017 tip of the year Whitbread (WTB), which only went dully up last year. I concluded in that piece that I would 'hold on' and I am. Today's announcement of a change at the top of the company's management structure reiterates such a position.
Whitbread (WTB) has had an up-and-down year since my last update on the stock - HERE. The Costa and Premier Inn operator unsurprisingly has been impacted by the changes in perception towards the strength (or not) of the UK consumer and this has pushed the shares between a £36 and £42 range this year. Today's interim results have again pushed the shares towards the lower end of this range despite the company reiterating its hopes for the full year.
Hello Share Screechers. It was a bonus when I bought some Whitbread (WTB) shares and found I could wangle hotel accommodation at half price. Well, actually, the deal for shareholders is you and yours get a free Sunday at a Premier Inn if you stay on a Saturday night. Up to two rooms are on offer. Here are some other share perks you might like.
Is the UK consumer completely shot? For the last year we have had a waxing and waning in views from 'the experts' on this. The reality is that it depends who you talk to but, biggest picture, what is needed is a great product, attractive marketing and a base underlying need. I last chatted through the Whitbread (WTB) investment case in late January, where I concluded that the stock was still worth a punt...
Hello Share Samplers. I’m quite excited about this. This family has now received its Whitbread (WTB) shareholder’s discount card. A good investment that, as I’ve only held the share a few weeks and am already up by 12%. And the added perk is really quite good, as shareholder discounts go.
First trading update of my (long) tip of the year for 2017 and the shares are down 4%. Worried? Of course not…the Whitbread (WTB) share price is still nicely above where I recommended it…and frankly we are not even a month into the year. The magnitude of the move today reflects the (to use a wonderful phrase poached from a fellow market observer) wildebeest financial market backdrop we have at the moment…
Hello Share Cravers. Whitbread (WTB) is a name which still conjures up old-fashioned pubs and breweries. Not necessarily a great business to be in that, as pubs seem to close down all over the shop.
If you want to buy just one new single stock in the FTSE-100 for 2017 you need to look at the perceived Brexit losers given, over the course of the next 12 months, Brexit apocalypse will move further away via delays and position dilution. Forget big overseas earners as this backdrop will crimp their translated back into Sterling earnings so it has to be more domestic plays. And filtering for market leadership, strong balance sheet and continued growth hopes I end up with Whitbread (WTB) the owner of the Costa Coffee and Premier Inn franchises.
Hello Share Thumpers. The big hotel and catering set-up Whitbreads (WTB) has had an encouraging write-up in my modest column before. If anything my enthusiasm has increased since then. The first three months of this year were promising both for its hotels and for its Costas, the Italian- sounding, but not, chain of coffee houses, which seem to be springing up everywhere.
Hello Share Trillers. When I think of that well-known British name Whitbread (WTB), I think of pubs and beer. As I am a red wine man, this does not always thrill me.
Having worked in the markets of the City for more years than I can remember, I have certain notions, ideas and truisms built into my sense awareness that is as indicative as the brand mark on a Texas steer. The one I have in mind at the moment - contained in my book on how to play the share market which I wrote at the request if Tom Winnifrith himself and awaiting publication - is that the share prices of highly rated stocks do not withstand disappointment. To that may be added the old notion that troubles, when they com, come not as single spies but in battalions. That is not in my book but in Shakespeare’s play King Lear.
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