A month to forget!


Hollywood Bowl Bought at 219p - July 19

I've held a starter position in Hollywood Bowl for about a year now and have been very happy with its steady progress. The share still passes my quality and value screens easily and is perhaps even better value than it was a year ago. After all the price has barely moved but profits have increased while debt is notably reduced. In addition analyst estimates for 2019 have edged up gradually over the last year to 13.7p and now point to earnings growth of 9.2%. I think that this could be a slight underestimate given that at the HY profits rose by 13.6% to 8.92p and they could easily make 5p in the second half. However when it came to actually buying any shares in the market I had a devil of a job getting a quote from a market maker for the deal size I had in mind. In the end I decided to put in a limit order at 220p and leave it for a couple of weeks to see if anyone would fill it. As it happens my order executed a few days before expiry at a price which looks more like the offer than the bid! Chalk up a victory for patience.

SimplyBiz Group Bought at 218p - July 19

I've held SimplyBiz for a while now and was pretty happy with their core business. However their acquisition of Defaqto, back in March, struck me as a genius move. In a stroke they materially grew the company while gaining a very complementary business line. Given that management believe that Defaqto will be earnings enhancing in the first year (which makes sense given that it generated £5.3m of EBITDA on £12.8m of sales in 2018) then it strikes me as odd that analyst forecasts have actually reduced a little in the last few months! At the time I didn't want to chase the price up, given that it's performed strongly this year, but after hitting a high of 240p the price came back almost 14% before stabilising at just below 220p. With a pre-close trading statement imminent I judged this to be on opportune moment to double my holding at a reasonable level. Guess we'll know shortly!

Quartix Holdings Bought at 278p - July 19

As mentioned below I like the strategy that management are…

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