Market report

Bellway | Revolution | ASOS | Fanduel fans Flutter

Market close: The FTSE 100 ended 13.39 points, or 0.2%, higher at 7,930.96. 


Bellway

Bellway

Housebuilder Bellway retained its annual home-building targets after posting a 57% slump in half-year profit.

An improvement in demand in recent months fuelled hopes of a recovery in the housing sector, it said.

CEO Jason Honeyman said: “Although the economic backdrop remains uncertain, the gradual reduction in mortgage interest rates throughout the first half has helped to ease affordability constraints … encouraged by the improvement in reservations since the start of the new calendar year.”

The company’s private reservation rate jumped 20.7% to 163 per week in the six weeks since 1 February, compared with the same period a year earlier.

It reported underlying pre-tax profit for the six months ended 31 January of £134.2m compared with £312.1m a year earlier.

The interim dividend payout has been cut to 16p per share from 45p a year earlier.

The shares closed 56p higher at 2688p.


Revolution Bars

Revolution Bars Group has confirmed that it will restructure or sell the business as it explores emergency funding that could raise £10m.

“Following a period of external challenges which have impacted the company’s business and trading performance, the board is actively exploring all the strategic options available to it to improve the future prospects of the group,” it said in a statement.

“These include a restructuring plan for certain parts of the group, a sale of all or part of the group and any other avenue.”

Shareholders and other investors, including former Patisserie Valerie owner Luke Johnson, are being engaged over the emergency fundraising.

Revolution revealed plans to shut sites in January on the back of tough trading, which it attributed to young customers facing cost of living pressures. It followed up with a profit warning which sent shares into a tailspin. After today’s news shares in the group, which owns Peach Pubs and the Revolución de Cuba chain, fell by 1.5p, or 51.7%, to 1.5p.


ASOS

ASOS

Online retailer ASOS said sales in the six months to 3 March were down 18% and it is clearing old stock and reducing its inventory before transitioning to a new operating model in 2025.

This has helped the group’s net cash position, with a balance of £330 million at the end of the period compared to just £20m a year earlier.

Chief executive José Antonio Ramos Calamonte said: “ASOS is becoming a faster and more agile business, aided by the incredible work of our teams to speed up all of our processes to deliver the fashion, quality and prices that our customers want, when they want it.

“I’m excited by the performance of our new collections, while we have also made great progress in monetising inventory that built up over the pandemic and in improving the core profitability of our operations.”

ASOS kept its full-year guidance unchanged, forecasting a 5-10% sales decline, positive adjusted EBITDA, inventory back to pre-COVID levels, and positive cash generation.


AG Barr

Shares in soft drinks firm AG Barr advanced 48p, or 9.3%, to 562p after chief executive Roger White signed off his final set of results at the Irn-Bru maker with a hike in adjusted profit and the dividend.

Full story here


Wood Group

Energy services company Wood Group is targeting annualised savings of around $60 million from 2025 after announcing strong revenue and improved cash flow for the year to the end of December. But the shares closed down 10.25p, or 7%, at 138p as the company reported larger losses than expected.

Full story here


Flutter Entertainment

FanDuel logo

FanDuel, the fantasy sports company with its origins in Edinburgh, helped its boost revenue at owner Flutter Entertainment by 24.6% to $11.79 billion (£9.3 billion) in 2023, although net losses widened to $1.21 billion from $370 million in the previous year.

The net loss was primarily due to significant non-cash charges, including a $725 million impairment on the PokerStars trademark.

The US business saw sales surge by 40.7%, with FanDuel maintaining the top position in the sportsbook and iGaming markets. FanDuel acquired over 3.7 million sports betting and iGaming players in 2023, 19% more than the prior year.

It meant Flutter, which also owns high street bookmaker Paddy Power, posted its first positive year of adjusted earnings in the US of $65 million. Analysts say this consistent growth bodes well for the group’s recent listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

The gambling group said it will formally move its primary listing to the United States by the end of May.

The decision will be a blow for the London Stock Exchange. Although shares in Flutter will continue to be traded in the City, the £30 billion compajny will no longer be a member of the FTSE 100 share index.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked as *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.