Small Cap Value Report (Thu 15 Mar 2018) - Bitcoin, PMP, TFW

Wednesday, Mar 14 2018 by
68

Hi, it's Paul here with a shorter & earlier than usual report.

NB. No reader requests today please, because I won't have time to do them - I have to attend a conference in London all afternoon & evening, so this will be a shorter & earlier report than usual. 

However, please feel free to leave your own comments on results & trading updates from companies that you find interesting, explaining why you think they look interesting. It's a team effort!

I completed yesterday's report in the evening, as the whole day was taken up with Conviviality (LON:CVR) . Additional sections on Somero Enterprises Inc (LON:SOM) and Empresaria (LON:EMR) were added. So here's the link for yesterday's full report, to get you started today.





Bitcoin

I see that is falling again. It's down to $7900. The recent peak was $20,000.

Recent developments have been that Google has apparently banned all advertising for fantasy currencies, following on from a similar ban by Facebook. Christine Lagarde of the IMF made extremely negative comments about fantasy currencies, saying they may need to be banned.

All this is inevitable because there is no way that governments will allow criminals and fantasists to undermine or replace the existing financial system, it just won't happen. Any such threats will ultimately be banned, although authorities tend to be very slow to react.

So I reiterate my previous firm conviction that fantasy currencies are doomed to failure. The fact that they have zero value is also rather important. You only have to go on to social media to see the type of people who are bullish on this stuff – these are not financially sophisticated people by and large. I don't know any serious investors who would go near crypto-currencies, because they can see it for what it is – a giant financial speculative bubble.

I've done quite a lot of research on block chain technology, and I feel that some form of adaptation of this could become very successful and of widespread use. However the speculative mania over completely artificial valuations put on the so-called coins, seems to be nearing the inevitable end-game – of total collapse.

Anyway, I am watching from the sidelines…

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As per our Terms of Use, Stockopedia is a financial news & data site, discussion forum and content aggregator. Our site should be used for educational & informational purposes only. We do not provide investment advice, recommendations or views as to whether an investment or strategy is suited to the investment needs of a specific individual. You should make your own decisions and seek independent professional advice before doing so. Remember: Shares can go down as well as up. Past performance is not a guide to future performance & investors may not get back the amount invested. ?>


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Portmeirion Group PLC is a United Kingdom-based company, which is engaged in providing ceramic tableware, cookware, giftware and tabletop accessories. The Company has five brands: Portmeirion, Spode, Royal Worcester, Pimpernel and Wax Lyrical. The Company's segments include UK and US operations. Portmeirion offers tableware and gifts with collections, such as Sophie Conran for Portmeirion and Ted Baker collection. Spode brand includes Blue Italian, Blue Room and Christmas Tree. Royal Worcester is engaged in providing porcelain tableware and cookware collections. Pimpernel provides placemats, coasters, trays and accessories. Pimpernel also includes Wrendale Designs collection, which includes placemats, coasters, trays, ceramic and melamine gift sets. Wax Lyrical offers fragranced candles and reed diffusers. The Company caters to markets, such as United States, the United Kingdom, South Korea, India, Taiwan and Thailand. more »

LSE Price
1160p
Change
 
Mkt Cap (£m)
126.1
P/E (fwd)
15.4
Yield (fwd)
3.3

FW Thorpe Plc is a United Kingdom-based company, which specializes in designing, manufacturing and supplying of professional lighting equipment. The Company operates in eight business segments based on the products and customer base in the lighting market. These segments include Thorlux, Lightronics Participaties B.V., Compact Lighting Limited, Philip Payne Limited, Solite Europe Limited, Portland Lighting Limited, TRT Lighting Limited and Thorlux Lighting LLC. The Company's business segments operate in four geographical areas: the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, the rest of Europe and the rest of the World. The Company's subsidiaries include Compact Lighting Limited, which designs and manufactures lighting solutions for retail applications; Philip Payne Limited, which designs and manufactures illuminated signs; Solite Europe Limited, which designs and manufactures cleanroom lighting equipment, and Portland Lighting Limited, which designs and manufactures lighting for signs. more »

LSE Price
317.5p
Change
-0.8%
Mkt Cap (£m)
371.1
P/E (fwd)
n/a
Yield (fwd)
n/a



  Is LON:PMP fundamentally strong or weak? Find out More »


68 Comments on this Article show/hide all

gus 1065 15th Mar 49 of 68

In reply to post #339133

Hi Herbie.

Re. Thumbs and iPads, if you have the urge to up or down thumb on an iPad, for reasons I don’t understand, it does work if you make your mark on the right hand side icons on the main discussion board. I just gave you a second thumb up from an iPad.

Gus.

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herbie47 15th Mar 50 of 68
1

In reply to post #339403

Sorry I don't understand where you mean.

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ricky65 15th Mar 51 of 68
3

In reply to post #339273

Hi Francis,

I agree that Cloudcall (LON:CALL) is looking like a Minervini stock. Appears to be a nice base forming at the moment, bouncing off the 150 MA.

I don't like that it's loss making. Paul covered it in January and he mentioned "CALL has clearly now gone past a tipping point where it will reach profitability, this year or next year. ". I see results are due on the 20th, next Tuesday. Are they expected to report a maiden profit?

Thanks for flagging it. It's going on my watchlist.

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gus 1065 15th Mar 52 of 68
2

In reply to post #339413

Herbie.

If you go to the main Discussion page and identify the comment that you want to append with a thumb sign then go to the right hand column with the title “Likes/dislikes” you should be able to mark a thumb up or down from your iPad.

Gus.

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Zipmanpeter 15th Mar 53 of 68
9

In reply to post #339043

PZ Cussons (LON:PZC) are hit by the same issue in both UK/Europe and Africa. In both places they are caught in the squishy middle between cost focused competitors and big multi-nationals brands and have been for years.

Nigeria/Africa profit has been steadily dropping on stagnant scales as MNC come and occupy the high ground eg Morning Fresh slowly surrendering ground to Fairy/Sunlight whilst really cheap locals are getting better all the time - helped by Chinese/Indian expertise and often cash

In UK/Europe, they led the market with Carex liquid soap, then quickly converted Imperial Leather to a liquid brand but since then not much innovation to offset lack of scale in negotiations. First against the wall when the buyer needs extra margin....(as occurred with Morning Fresh effective demise in UK..

Need to recover their entrepreneurial mojo or else face steady decline

Disclosure - former senior employee (>5 yrs ago) but still close watcher. Definitely not a shareholder!

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herbie47 15th Mar 54 of 68

In reply to post #339423

OK if I go into new posts I can do it, thanks.

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fwyburd 15th Mar 55 of 68
3

In reply to post #339418

Thanks Ricky65. As a relative newcomer (to Minervini), I'm still getting used to applying his principles in practice so that's good to know.

I met the CEO recently at an event and particularly liked his market strategy. He said they were concentrating entirely on the Recruitment market and whilst there were other markets he felt were appropriate (financial services for instance) they were in no rush to try breaking into them in the short term.

That's what I recommend in my tech consulting work and gave me assurance about their ability to focus on winning in one market at a time.

In terms of results, I find it hard to predict what next Tuesday holds, thus the question in my previous post about selling or buying more before then.

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davidjhill 15th Mar 56 of 68
4

In reply to post #339388

Hi Ed - my "probably" was of course a bit tongue in cheek though you can never say that with certainty when it comes to the majors such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, BTC etc.

Certainly there are very many cryptos that are absolute rubbish (and in some cases outright fraud). This also reminds me very much of the Dot-com era. I don't participate in them and I don't agree that anyone should buy them on credit or leverage. Personally I am all for regulation in this space.

Crypto's though are like marmite; they tend to elicit very polar opinions. You only have to look at the red thumbs on my previous post to see that.
I know a good number of very serious investors and financially sophisticated folk that take either side of the arguement so I thought that was worth pointing out. I also thought it worth highlighting that some countries are actually quietly embracing cryptos whilst others cry foul. I just don't think things are quite as black and white as general commentary on the subject seems to make out.

My own opinion is that digital currency is here to stay, though very much like the dot com era I wouldn't like to say which ones will win out or what their ultimate value will be. I also think regulation, especially on ICOs, will come soon and that's a good thing since these are fundamentally just IPOs with zero basic investor protections and less actual ownership. That should put an end to most of the rubbish hopefully.
I have very small (relative) long positions in ETH & BTC but that's all and largely on the thesis that I think digital currency is becoming a minor asset class of a digital data driven age, but am also comfortable to accept that I may well be proved wrong in that thesis ultimately.

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ricky65 15th Mar 57 of 68

In reply to post #339458

That's interesting. The strategy of concentrating on the Recruitment market appears to be working. Last Trading Update mentioned Total Revenue up 41% which I think is impressive.

I'm going to wait for results on Tuesday, and if they're well received, then I'll probably take a position.

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peterg 15th Mar 58 of 68
1

 I don't know how you can say it's only 'probably' a bubble when, by definition really, any currency with zero inherent value and no central bank backing has only speculative value

That's not quite true. In addition to speculation bitcoin et al have value (albeit hard to quantify) to those who want to exchange value in ways that cannot be tracked - i.e. those being paid for illegal activities, those who want to launder money and some of those who want to evade tax. 

The problem is that those things that create "value" for cryptos are also exactly the sort of things that states, central banks etc are not likely to look positively upon. There may always be scope for some cryptos to survive in the twilight, but once serious action is taken to control them, as must happen, the speculators, at least are going to feel the pinch.

Peter

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davidjhill 15th Mar 59 of 68

In reply to post #339583

technically FIAT currency has no any inherent value either......Zimbabwe, Venezuela?
They are only as good as the credibility / credit worthiness of the backer and we've seen that go spectacularly wrong. Even something with technically intrinsic value like Gold only has its place because it is finite and coveted. It has the obvious benefit of being thought about that way for thousands of years yet even that still provokes debate amongst economists.........

Venezuela were the first country to have launched their own digital ccy backed by oil - backed by central bank because FIAT ccy is so weak.....
Coinbase today got a bank account with Barclays and an FCA license to roll out faster payments!

Don't get me wrong, I am no massive bull/advocate of digital ccy and I can see the pitfalls and bear case associated with it, but am fascinated at the psychology of how the idea seems to provoke very strong feelings of worth or otherwise across the world. Interesting topic

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ed_miller 15th Mar 60 of 68
1

In reply to post #339473

Re crypto-currencies: I don't doubt for a moment there are some very sophisticated traders involved, David, among many more mug punters who will lose all their money. All other practical disadvantages aside, blockchain technologies, relying on broadly-distributed ledgers for transaction verification appear to have a fatal flaw in the huge energy (and computing) demand, even for transactions of very low value. Hence actual use of crypto-currencies appears not to be scalable in any really serious way. Perhaps there are alternative systems that aren't so greedy in energy and computing power and, in the hands of stable governments which can supply the required backing and guarantees, will become everyday currency for us all.

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ed_miller 15th Mar 61 of 68

In reply to post #339583

Re crypto-currencies: I didn't say they have no value and no utility, Peter. Unlike FIAT currencies (the major ones at least), which as is often pointed out, usually have no inherent value either, cryptos have no credible, dependable backing. That means that - I would argue, in stark contrast to the major FIAT currencies - the cryptos' value is 100% speculative (even if some of that speculative value is born of genuine utility) since they have no reliable backing in a crisis, meaning they have no floor under them and nothing to rescue them when there is a run on the currency - nothing to stop their spot prices falling to zero in such circumstances and therefore no reason to think they won't fall to zero under such circumstances when they suffer loss of confidence. (Nor do they appear to have endurable and sustainable value if only due to their voracious energy and computing-power demands that I mentioned in other comments.)

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timarr 16th Mar 62 of 68
1

In reply to post #339603

blockchain technologies, relying on broadly-distributed ledgers for transaction verification appear to have a fatal flaw in the huge energy (and computing) demand

No, that's just proof of work, which underlies the consensus mechanism for the Bitcoin blockchain and it does indeed require lots of energy. However, it's just one consensus mechanism, there's a whole industry out there looking at low energy alternatives.

Beyond that proof of work and alternatives are a way of validating and clearing transactions without requiring to trust counterparties, but these themselves are just one class of crypto-currency. For example, it's entirely possible to have a crypto-currency based on trusting a third-party such as a central bank or a payment scheme to ensure that transactions are properly validated. 

In purely technical terms blockchain based currencies have some underlying efficiencies as payment methods regardless of how consensus is achieved, assuming you can gain sufficient volume of acceptance - basically a currency is only of real use if people can exchange it for goods or services. Without that they're really just instruments for speculation - but let's face it, some people will gamble on anything.

timarr

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ed_miller 16th Mar 63 of 68
2

In reply to post #339658

Re crypto-currencies & blockchain technologies: Glad to hear from you, timarr, as someone working in the field, and thanks for the clarification. When there are low-energy crypto-currencies backed by major governments, then I would be prepared to hold crypto-currency over-night (and use other similarly robustly-supported blockchain technologies - at the right price, I might invest in those supplying the infrastructure or services too since I agree that the right systems have enormous utility and potential).

Some will argue that this isn't the right place for discussions on cryptos & blockchain. I would point out that - in addition to Paul Scott introducing the topic here for discussion - the benefit to discussion here is that new investors not acquainted with speculative bubbles can read the concerns of those who are and who have lost money in previous manias. Whereas dedicated threads can be dominated by advocates and not always address the risks and downsides fully (though some are good at covering the subject from all angles).

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ridavies 16th Mar 64 of 68

In reply to post #339438

Re PZ Cussons (LON:PZC), IMHO in the UK, Imperial Leather is an old fashioned brand. Nothing wrong with that, except that demand from old fashioned users has to hold up. My view is that it isn't doing. Also in pricing, it seems that it has become much more of a commodity product. Brand values? A bit of sticky paper on the top? I don't see it going anywhere but slowly and gradually down. Innovation? Seems the brighter people left to build more innovative companies.
Anyway, your insight from inside, although a few years ago, is interesting.

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Zipmanpeter 16th Mar 65 of 68
1

In reply to post #339753

Re PZ Cussons (LON:PZC), Most of value in Imperial Leather is probably now in the liquid soap not the hard soap but your point still holds true; was a great brand but now, not so much. (Same is true in Nigeria except liquid soap category which is premium is far less advanced).

The corporate DNA comes from the (Greek) trading history. At its best it is entrepreneurial and risk taking (start liquid soap, entering new markets) .....but better at seizing discontinuous opportunities (ie doing deals, enterng new product sectors) than in brand building which requires spending on brand development. Now start in an uneasy position as a mid sized company with tier 2 brands; never seems to known whether it should commit to the brand (as it says it does) or trade it for cash

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davidjhill 16th Mar 66 of 68
1

In reply to post #339713

Yes, what I like about this board is that it is generally full of people with different well thought out viewpoints, that irrespective of whether you agree or not helps add colour to ones own natural bias. There is seldom a single right answer and it is nice to get a balanced debate.

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ed_miller 16th Mar 67 of 68

In reply to post #339963

I've found your inside views on PZ Cussons (LON:PZC) valuable, thanks. - Unless PZC is willing to invest in marketing and innovating its brands, especially Imperial Leather, holders of its shares might do well to trade them for cash.

(No position.)

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clarea 16th Mar 68 of 68

In reply to post #338888

Sorry Paul was a late night with lack of sleep missed the obvious.

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About Paul Scott

Paul Scott

I trained as an accountant with a Top 5 firm, but that was so boring that I spent too much time in the 1990s being a disco bunny, and busting moves on the dancefloor, and chilling out with mates back at either my house or theirs, and having a lot of fun!Then spent 8 years as FD for a ladieswear retail chain called "Pilot", leaving on great terms in 2002 - having been a key player in growing the business 10 fold. If the truth be told, I partied pretty hard at the weekends too, so bank reconciliations on Monday mornings were more luck than judgement!! But they were always correct.I got bored with that and decided to become a professional small caps investor in 2002. I made millions, but got too cocky, and lost the lot in 2008, due to excessive gearing. A miserable, wilderness period occurred from 2008-2012.Since then, the sun has begun to shine again! I am now utterly briliant again, and immerse myself in small caps, and am a walking encyclopedia on the subject. I love writing a daily report for Stockopedia.com on most weekday mornings, constantly researching daily results & trading updates for small caps. Cheese! more »

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