Ace Liberty & Stone - Half-year Report
RNS Number : 1426A
Ace Liberty & Stone PLC
31 January 2022
 

 

 

Ace Liberty and Stone plc

(''Ace'' or "the Company'')

INTERIM RESULTS FOR SIX MONTHS TO 31 OCTOBER 2021

 

Ace Liberty and Stone plc, the active property investment company, capitalising on commercial property investment opportunities across the UK, is delighted to announce Interim Results for the period from 1 May 2021 to 31 October 2021. 

 

Highlights:

·      Pre-tax profit increased by 12.1% to £754,911 (H1 2021) from £673,511 (H1 2020)

·      Rental income slightly reduced by 3.3% in a difficult trading period. Down from £2,985,965 (H1 2020) to £2,887,723 (H1 2021)

•      Rent deferrals granted to four main tenants in the leisure industry have now been collected in full.

•      Three properties sold since 30 April 2021 to achieve a profit of £2,800,000 over purchase price.

 

 

Ismail Ghandour, Chief Executive Officer, commented:

"At a time when property valuations are under pressure from valuers, Ace has sold three properties for a profit of £2.8m - a profit of nearly 35% on original cost."

 

 

 

Chairman's statement

 

I am pleased to announce the Company's interim results for the half year ended 31 October 2021. The Company has performed strongly in very difficult circumstances. Turnover at £2,887,723 for the half year is down by 3.3% on the comparable value for the previous year of £2,985,965. A number of factors impact on this, notably the sales and acquisitions of properties and the CVA protection sought by a tenant which temporarily reduced the rent payable. Total comprehensive income for the period is £741,673 compared to the result of £590,739 in the prior interim period, an increase of 25.6%.

 

During the period under review Ace completed the sales of Hillcrest House, Leeds and Bridge House, Dudley. The former was sold for £2,300,000 against a purchase price in November 2013 of £1,450,000 and the latter for £5,100,000 against a purchase price in April 2015 of £4,100,000. Subsequent to the balance sheet date, the Company completed the sale of Willow and Holly Court, Plymouth, which cost £3,500,000 in April 2016, for £4,450,000. The directors seek to maintain a prudent balance between profiting on property sales and maintaining a consistent income stream. These three sales realise a total profit of £2,800,000 on assets costing £9,050,000. As opportunities arise, the directors will consider making further selective sales to unlock the value in the balance sheet.

 

The purchasers of Hillcrest House and Bridge House elected to acquire the share capital of the subsidiary company owning each asset and this impacts the entries shown on the statement of comprehensive income. The properties have been valued at sale price in previous balance sheets and shown as assets held for sale.

 

The directors have prudently made a small revaluation of £100,000 loss against Willow House, Aldershot to reflect market conditions.

 

The Company has weathered the economic effects of the Covid pandemic in good shape. Four major tenants in the leisure industry were forced to stop or curtail their business activities and negotiated deferrals of some of their rent liabilities. In the period since the balance sheet date, all have been brought up to date with no write-offs. Some of the smaller businesses in the Sunderland and Margate properties have been slow to make up their arrears.

 

The loan facility advanced by Lloyds Banking Group in 2016 reached maturity in November 2021 and has been temporarily rolled over while a new facility is put in place. Discussions in this respect are ongoing but proceeding well. The loan currently stands at £15,586,931, secured on assets in the balance sheet at £40,637,866.

 

The following statistics are key to the Company's activities at 31 October 2021:

a)     Portfolio Loan to Value is 50% (H1 2020: 53%)

b)    Weighted Average Unexpired Lease to Break is 7.03 years (H1 2020: 6.94 years)

c)     57% of tenants are government bodies (H1 2020: 57%); 42% are triple-A commercial (H1 2020:42%)

 

The Company suspended dividend payments in January 2020 as a result of the uncertainties stemming from the effects of the Covid-19 virus. The directors keep this under constant review and will resume payments as soon as circumstances permit. The directors value the support given by the shareholders which improves the long term strength of the Company.

 

The directors believe that the Company's prospects are excellent. It has survived a period of unprecedented difficulty without serious harm. The portfolio is sound, producing a solid income and cash flow, and poised to benefit from improvements in the UK economy.

 

 

Dr Tony Ghorayeb

Chairman

27 January 2022

 

 

 

 

Unaudited group statement of comprehensive income

 

 

   Six months ended 31 October 2021 (Unaudited)  

   Six months ended 31 October 2020 (Unaudited)  

 Year ended 30 April 2021 (Audited)

 

  GBP 

  GBP 

  GBP 

 

 

 

 

Turnover

2,887,723

2,985,965

6,227,124

 

 

 

 

Administrative expenses

(579,241)

(753,944)

(1,406,526)

Fair value losses on investment property

-

-

(500,000)

Fair value gains / (losses) on assets held for sale

(100,00)

(200,000)

(200,000)

Loss on disposal of subsidiary

(314,800)

-

-

Finance cost

(1,550,156)

(1,389,010)

(3,021,065)

Finance income

411,385

30,500

286,539

Profit for the period

754,911

673,511

1,386,072

 

 

 

 

Taxation

(215,540)

(91,655)

(176,024)

 

 

 

 

Profit after taxation

539,371

581,856

1,210,048

 

 

 

 

Other comprehensive income

202,302

8,883

8,883

 

 

 

 

Total comprehensive income for the period

741,673

590,739

1,218,931

 

 

Earnings per share - profit after tax*

 

 

 

 

          pence*

       pence*

   pence*

Basic

         0.92

      0.99

      2.07

Diluted

         0.72

      0.78

      1.63

 

 

 

 

Earnings per share - total comprehensive income on redemption and rollover of CLNs

          pence

       pence

   pence

Basic

         1.26

      1.01

      2.08

Diluted

         0.99

      0.79

      1.64

  *Unaudited

 

 

 

Unaudited group statement of changes in equity for the six months ended 31 October 2021

 Share capital

 Share premium

 Other reserve

Treasury shares

 Retained earnings

Total equity

 

 £  

 £  

 £  

 £  

 £  

 £  

Balance at 30 April 2020

14,626,463

16,773,712

211,185

(480,620)

(144,608)

30,986,132

Total comprehensive income for the period

 

 

 

 

 

 

Profit for the period

-

-

-

-

1,242,981

1,242,981

Other comprehensive income

-

-

-

-

8,883

8,883

 

-

-

-

-

1,251,864

1,251,864

Transactions with owners

 

 

 

 

 

 

Value of conversion rights on convertible notes

-

-

(8,883)

-

-

(8,883)

 

-

-

(8,883)

-

-

(8,883)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance at 31 October 2020

14,626,463

16,773,712

202,302

(480,620)

1,107,256

32,229,113

Total comprehensive deficit for the period

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

-

-

-

-

(32,933)

(32,933)

Other comprehensive income

-

-

-

-

-

-

 

-

-

-

-

(32,933)

(32,933)

Transactions with owners

 

 

 

 

 

 

Value of conversion rights on convertible notes

-

-

-

-

-

-

 

-

-

-

-

-

-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance at 30 April 2021

14,626,463

16,773,712

202,302

(480,620)

1,074,323

32,196,180

Total comprehensive income for the period

 

 

 

 

 

 

Profit for the period

-

-

-

-

539,371

539,371

Other comprehensive income

-

-

-

-

202,302

202,302

 

-

-

-

-

741,673

741,673

Transactions with owners

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shares issued during the period

62,500

137,500

-

-

-

200,000

Value of conversion rights on convertible notes

-

-

(202,302)

-

-

(202,302)

Equity element of new issue on convertible notes

-

-

208,600

-

-

208,600

 

62,500

137,500

6,298

-

-

206,298

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance at 31 October 2021

14,688,963

16,911,212

208,600

(480,620)

1,815,996

33,144,151

 

 

Unaudited group statement of financial position

 

 

 

at 31 October 2021

 

 

 

 

At 31 October 2021  (Unaudited)  

At 31 October 2020 (Unaudited)  

At 30 April 2021 (Audited)

 

  GBP 

  GBP 

  GBP 

ASSETS

 

 

 

Non-current assets

 

 

 

Investment properties

79,706,639

78,391,081

79,706,639

Investments

5,000,680

-

5,000,680

Deferred tax

223,541

45,054

223,541

Derivative financial instrument

3,293

-

-

 

84,934,153

78,436,135

84,930,860

Current assets

 

 

 

Assets held for sale

3,050,000

10,229,921

10,229,921

Deferred tax

76,000

-

-

Trade and other receivables

628,090

1,042,425

1,347,471

Cash and cash equivalents

1,309,086

7,509,091

2,913,363

 

5,063,176

18,781,437

14,490,755

 

 

 

 

TOTAL ASSETS

89,997,329

97,217,572

99,421,615

 

 

 

 

EQUITY AND LIABILITIES

 

 

 

Current Liabilities

 

 

 

Liabilities relating to assets held for sale

1,227,563

1,317,063

1,272,313

Trade and other payables

3,326,249

6,314,559

7,311,567

Taxation

540,714

226,726

458,542

Borrowings

32,168,011

12,685,633

37,716,654

Derivative financial instrument

16,472

-

77,601

Deferred tax

-

-

83,487

 

37,279,009

20,543,981

46,920,164

Non-current liabilities

 

 

 

Borrowings

19,574,169

44,444,478

19,958,927

Derivative financial instrument

-

-

346,344

 

19,574,169

44,444,478

20,305,271

EQUITY

 

 

 

Issued capital and reserves

 

 

 

Share capital

14,688,963

14,626,463

14,626,463

Share premium reserve

16,911,212

16,773,712

16,773,712

Other reserve

208,600

202,302

202,302

Treasury shares

(480,620)

(480,620)

(480,620)

Retained earnings

1,815,996

1,107,256

1,074,323

Total equity attributable to owners of the parent

33,144,151

32,229,113

32,196,180

 

 

 

 

TOTAL EQUITY AND LIABILITIES

89,997,329

97,217,572

99,421,615

 

 

 

 

 

Unaudited Group cash flow statement

for the six months ended 31 October 2021

 

 

 

 

   Six months ended 31 October 2021 (Unaudited)  

   Six months ended 31 October 2020 (Unaudited)  

 Year ended 30 April 2021 (Audited)

 

  GBP 

  GBP 

  GBP 

Profit before tax

754,911

673,511

1,386,072

Cash flow from operating activities

 

 

 

Adjustments for:

 

 

 

Finance income

(411,385)

(30,500)

(286,539)

Finance costs

1,550,156

1,389,010

3,021,065

Fair value adjustment

100,00

200,000

700,000

Loss on disposal of subsidiary

314,800

-

-

Increase / (decrease) in receivables

110,122

(76,728)

(257,448)

(Decrease) / increase in payables

(394,859)

628,581

776,239

Tax paid

(5,659)

(3,050)

(4,936)

Interest paid

(1,069,446)

(1,411,157)

(2,617,709)

Other financial costs paid

(17,320)

(7,750)

(17,800)

Net cash generated by operating activities

931,320

1,361,917

2,698,944

Cash flows from investing activities

 

 

 

Interest received

619

30,500

49,359

Purchase of investment properties

-

(1,680,034)

(3,619,918)

Sale of investment properties

-

-

500,000

Sale of subsidiaries

3,241,484

-

-

Investment into LiBank

-

-

(5,000,680)

Net cash generated / (used) by investing activities

3,242,103

(1,649,534)

(8,071,239)

Cash flows from financing activities

 

 

 

Long term loans advanced

-

670,000

1,525,000

Long term loan repaid

(382,100)

(6,250)

(372,300)

    Short term loans repaid

(5,395,600)

(300,000)

(300,000)

Equity dividend paid

-

-

-

Net cash (used) / generated by financing activities

(5,777,700)

363,750

852,700

Net (decrease) / increase in cash and cash equivalents

(1,604,277)

76,133

(4,519,595)

Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of the period

2,913,363

7,432,958

7,432,958

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period

1,309,086

7,509,091

2,913,363

 

 

 

 

The interim financial information set out herein does not constitute full financial statements within the meaning of Section 240 of the Companies Act 2006. The interim results have not been audited or reviewed by the Company's auditors. The unaudited interim results have been prepared under the historical cost convention, in accordance with the Companies Act 2006 and applicable accounting standards in the United Kingdom.

 

The interim report has been prepared using accounting policies consistent with those set out in the Company's Annual Report and Accounts for the period to 30 April 2021. Those financial statements were prepared on a going concern basis.

The interim report for the six months to 31 October 2021 was approved by the Board on 27 January 2022

The Directors of Ace Liberty & Stone Plc accept responsibility for this announcement.

 

 

 

Notes to Editors

 

Ace Liberty & Stone Plc is a property investment company with a diverse portfolio of properties located across the UK, currently including Sunderland, Leicester, Margate, Barnstaple, and Manchester. The Company locates commercial properties with Triple-A tenants which have the potential for an increase in value.  Ace has maintained a track record of generating strong profits at disposal of properties and achieving better-than-average returns on capital which are in turn utilised to underwrite an increasing dividend flow to shareholders. With strong support from shareholders and mortgage lenders, the Company is currently seeking further investment opportunities in the UK to create value for existing and new investors.

 

Ace is run by a board with extensive property experience, an excellent network of contacts and relevant professional qualifications. This sector expertise allied to a flexible decision-making process has allowed the Board to identify promising opportunities and act promptly to secure investments.

 

For more information on the Company please visit www.acelibertyandstone.com

 

For further information, please contact:

 

Ace Liberty & Stone Plc

 

Ivan Minter, Financial Director

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7201 8340

 

http://acelibertyandstone.com

Alfred Henry Corporate Finance Ltd,

AQSE Growth Market Corporate Adviser

 

Jon Isaacs / Nick Michaels

Tel: +44 (0) 20 3772 0021

 

 

SP Angel Corporate finance LLP

Broker

 

Vadim Alexandre /  Rob Rees

Tel: +44 (0)20 3861 6625 

 

 

     

- Ends -

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