Good morning, it's Paul here.

I'm trying out a slightly different format today, because I installed some voice recognition software called Dragon, and am dictating this into a microphone. The reason being RSI all the way up my right arm, which should be alleviated by reduced use of keyboard & mouse.

Satellite Solutions Worldwide (SAT), announces that it is part of a £2.1 million grant funded project to explore how to provide 5G wireless broadband. It doesn't sound financially significant, being EBITDA neutral this financial year, and positive EBITDA of £100,000 in year two.But it does increase their potential market penetration from 70% to 90% of customers, which sounds good longer term.

The first set of company results for y/e 31 Jan 2018 today which have caught my eye are those from...


French Connection (LON:FCCN)

Share price: 37.3p (up 10.7% today)
No. shares: 96.3m
Market cap: £35.9m

(at the time of writing, I hold a long position in this share)

Preliminary results - for the year ended 31 Jan 2018. 

The share price rose 14% yesterday and I wondered why. So it might have been some insider dealing, or just speculative buyers hoping that the results will be good. Let's have a look.

Wow, this actually looks rather exciting! Bear in mind that most investors have completely written off this company years ago, expectations are extremely low.

  • Revenue is up 0.5% to £154 million, despite closing 11 loss-making shops

  • like-for-like sales up 0.8% for the year (not bad at all, many retailers have struggled to achieve positive LFLs)

  • wholesale revenue up 8.6%, very good

  • underlying operating loss reduced to -£0.6m, compared with a -£3.7m loss last year (note that in H1 underlying operating loss was -£5.7m. So the company made a profit of £5.1m in H2 - not bad going, but the usual seasonality)

The divisional split of performance is even more striking than in prior years;

  • Wholesale division made £12.5 million profit which is up 25% on last year

  • Licensing income made a profit of £6.3 million, flat against last year

  • But the retail division lost -£8.3 million, a terrible result, but a bit of an improvement against the -£9.8 million loss last year.

If only they could properly turn around the retail division, then this would be a nicely profitable business.

Group overheads of £10.4 million looks extremely high, and is…

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