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By Michele Maatouk
Date: Friday 12 Feb 2021
LONDON (ShareCast) - (Sharecast News) - Information, data and analytics company Ascential said on Friday that it has sold DeHavilland, a brand within its Built Environment & Policy (BEP) segment, to Bridgepoint for £15m in cash.
This concludes the disposal of its BEP businesses, following the recent agreement to sell Glenigan and the sale of Groundsure, with the total consideration for the three businesses coming to £257.9m.
Ascential had already said that proceeds from the sales would be allocated to core areas of focus, in particular the digital commerce segment, including organic investments and potential M&A opportunities.
In the year ended 31 December 2019, the BEP businesses generated revenue of £35.9m and adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation after allocation of central costs of £17m.
Chief executive officer Duncan Painter said: "For Ascential, this transaction marks the achievement of a strategic priority to bring clearer focus to our core customer proposition: enabling our customers to design and create the right products, maximise their marketing impact and optimise their digital commerce performance."
Shore Capital said: "We are pleased to see the completion of this area of strategic refocusing and its implications for ASCL's ability to further enhance its increasingly compelling involvement in the fast-growing digital commerce arena.
"More broadly, we also like the group's exposure to quality businesses with proprietary IP and attractive medium-term organic growth and cashflow prospects.
"Today's announcement also adds to the positive message on trading flagged in the group's December update, which indicated a solid headline performance despite the considerable challenges of FY20F. Specifically, the mid-points of the company's expected revenue and EBITDA ranges were £6m and £10m ahead of our expectations at that time."
Liberum said the disposal is another positive step to rationalising the group structure and increasing exposure to its growing Digital Commerce division, which has benefitted from the surge in ecommerce following the pandemic.
"Our bull case on Ascential is built on the opportunity presented by this division and we see upside to our current forecasts in Digital Commerce driven by scaling footprint in the US & China plus engaging in M&A with the BEP proceeds, "it said.
"While the events portfolio has come under stress during this year we see it as a short term headwind with delegates returning in full volume in the longer term."
|52 Week High||401.00p|
|52 Week Low||222.00p|
Compare performance with the sector and the market.
|Time||Volume / Share Price|
|16:35||131,079 @ 348.40p|
|16:29||22 @ 348.80p|
|16:29||281 @ 348.80p|
|16:28||246 @ 349.00p|
|16:28||172 @ 349.20p|