As noted back in November, I am a fan of Tate & Lyle (TATE) shares so it is pleasing to see them up 8% odd year-to-date. There are a bunch of reasons for this as I observed nearly five months ago, but the news today is that it’s buying a "leading prebiotic dietary fibre business in China from ChemPartner Pharmatech Co., Ltd for a total consideration of US$237 million". It is far from a boring thing to do, in fact - for a company which is outsourcing the management of much of its core historic business shortly - it is actually quite interesting to help it access more of the Asian/emerging market world over time. I remain a fan. And what also about James Halstead (JHD), “the AIM listed manufacturer and international distributor of commercial floor coverings”, whose shares are most certainly not up year-to-date?
It is easy to make investment selection errors but it is also easy to miss out on sensible investment opportunities. Over the last 10 months I have written twice about the industrial flooring company James Halstead (JHD), most recently back at the end of March. Back then I talked about that ‘looking for a bad day (or three) share price below 500p feels like a sensible longer-term buy of this sensible family influenced name forged in 1915’. Judging by today’s update from the company, I should have taken advantage of the opportunity I had to do that back in May.
Almost six months ago, here, I wrote about the industrial flooring company James Halstead (JHD) concluding that ‘at a billion quid market cap now and unlikely to best £50 million of operating profit this year, it is not a cheap stock but if you dig below the surface it is an impressive one’. With the shares little changed from a 500 pence share price, how did today’s half-year numbers to the end of last year get on?
For another time are my views on Rolls-Royce (RR.) after its big money raising announcement today because today I actually want to dole out some praise. I know previously (for example here) I have lauded Next (NXT) for its commitment to a high level of disclosures and a detailed plan, and typically these are the sort of traits I look for. You can have all the numbers and insights you like but ultimately you are putting your faith into a management team and their day-to-day capabilities. I love the insights from big themes and various important numbers, but company culture matters hugely too. And talking about culture, brings me to the industrial flooring company James Halstead (JHD)...