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QuotedData’s morning briefing 19 November 2021

In QuotedData’s morning briefing 19 November 2021:

  • Montanaro European Smaller Companies (MTE), which has a strong ESG overlay to its strategy, has published its interim results for the six months ended 30 September 2021. During the period, MTE’s NAV rose by 25.0% to 198.7p per share, thus outperforming its benchmark (MSCI Europe SmallCap (ex-UK) index), which rose by 8.6%. At the end of the period the premium to NAV was 0.7% versus 1.3% at the start. As a result, the share price of the company rose by 24.2% during the period, providing a total return of 24.7%. The trust’s chairman describes the first six months of MTE’s financial year as another strong period of absolute and relative performance for the company that builds further on its strong long term performance record.
  • Next Energy Solar Fund (NESF), a specialist solar power renewable energy investor, has published its interim results for the six months ended 30 September 2021. The key highlighhts from the results are as follows:
    • +4.2p increase in Net Asset Value per ordinary share to 103.1p (31 March 2021: 98.9p), reflecting higher power curves and higher market views of inflation

    • Diversification into the energy storage sector through a £100m joint venture partnership with Eelpower, a leading UK battery specialist, with first 50MW acquisition signed and being prepared for construction

    • Commitment of $50m into NextPower III, a private international solar fund, providing an opportunity to efficiently access, inter alia, an established portfolio of operational and in-construction international assets

    • Portfolio electricity generation +1.1% above budget for the period (2020: +11.1%)

    • Total dividends of 3.58p per ordinary share declared in period (2020: 3.525p), the Company remains on track to deliver its target dividend of 7.16p in respect of the year ended 31 March 2022

  • UK Mortgages has provided an update on its dividend policy. The fund says that, following the implementation of the strategic plan approved by shareholders in December 2020, it has delivered increasing income returns such that the current 1.125p quarterly dividend is being consistently and healthily covered. Income for the month to 30 September 2021 was 0.67p per share, which follows prior months’ income of approximately 0.54p and 0.45p per share. Reflecting this and a positive outlook for asset performance, UKML’s board says that it intends to declare an increased dividend of 1.25p per share in respect of the remaining three quarters of the Company’s financial year ending 30 June 2022. Furthermore, UKML says that, conditional on the Board’s assessment of actual and prospective performance, it is currently the board’s intention to increase the dividend per share further for the year ending 30 June 2023.
  • EPE Special Opportunities has published a circular in respect of a proposal to issue up to 25 million zero dividend preference shares at £1.00 per ZDP Share. The Circular contains a notice for an EGM scheduled for 9 am on 13 December 2021 in Jersey that relates to the ZDP issue.
  • Taylor Maritime Investments (TMIP), a specialist dry bulk shipping company, has announced that it has allotted 1,175,000 ordinary shares at US$1 per share in connection with the completion of the acquisition of a Japanese built Handysize vessel, which was agreed at the time of TMIP’s IPO (this being seed Asset 22 as described in the IPO prospectus). These shares are subject to a lock up until 27 May 2022, this being 12 months after the IPO followed by a “6 month orderly market period”. The vessel, which was delivered on 4 November 2021, increased TMI’s delivered fleet to 27 vessels. The vessel has since been fixed on a short period time charter of 3 months at an average annualised unlevered gross cash yield of over 50%. The remaining five committed vessels are expected to deliver before the end of January 2022.

  • Dunedin Income Growth (DIG) has announced that the trust’s co-manager, Georgina Cooper, is leaving abrdn, although she is expected to remain there until the end of January 2022. Ben Ritchie, who has been the Company’s lead manager since 2016 (and a named manager since 2009), will continue in this role> DIG says that it will make an announcement on the future shape of the investment team in due course.

We also have a proposed fundraising from Octopus Renewables Infrastructure (a £70m placing combined with a “REX Retail Offer”); the launch of Great Portland Estates’ Social Impact Strategy; and the results of Atrato Onsite Energy’s IPO.

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