Torotrak (LON:TRK) has been trying to commercialise its revolutionary Infinitely Variable Transmission (IVT) for vehicles, which they claim can deliver 20% fuel savings (in urban driving), for almost the entire time I've been actively investing in the stock market (about 15 years). It never quite seems to achieve proper success, but always seems on the cusp of it. Hence I'm very sceptical about this company, especially as the founder departed not that long ago - if the founder throws in the towel, why should anyone else believe in it?
They seem to have branched out into other areas, and now also make variable drive superchargers (V-Charge), and mechanical kinetic recovery systems (M-KERS), which I assume must be some form of energy recovery from braking? Automotive things interest me, as I've always been a total petrol-head, and used to love dismantling and repairing cars.
There doesn't seem to be anything exciting in this morning's IMS. Looking back at the last set of accounts (interims to 30 Sep 2012), Torotrak had current assets, less total liabilities of £9.4m (of which £10.7m was cash), so they are in a strong financial position. Historically they lose on average about £2-3m p.a., so there should be enough money in the kitty for them to keep going for about 5 years, even if they don't make any commercial progress.
The market cap is £42m at 25p/share, which looks pretty aggressive to me, given the long-term failure to make any significant commercial progress with this product (although they have managed to get it into some niche vehicles). Personally I'd only be prepared to have a flutter on this if I was paying little more than net cash, so about a quarter of the current share price.
Incidentally, the RNS news service from Investegate which I have used for years, every morning to get company results, has been very unreliable of late, omitting a lof of RNSs first thing, then they appear later in the day. I asked on Twitter a moment ago for an alternative, and Dan from Shares Magazine helped me out by recommending DigitalLook as an alternative source for company news. Thanks Dan! Just shows how useful Twitter is to investors, it's a great way to communicate.
I should also add that Stockopedia have major upgrade plans in the pipeline for…