Almost 90 per cent of the drop in
Selling toys is an unpredictable business and the key to this year's performance will be the Christmas order intake in July and August – just as the 2012 Olympics take central stage. So Character must rely on new toys to attract the attention of cash-strapped parents. One new product that might take off is : a table-top game where you can control "constructible" players such as Arsenal whizz Theo Walcott or England goalie Joe Hart, rather than anonymous soccer players. Then there are apps for five to 12-year-olds to use on tablet computers; one of the first titles will be a virtual game.
Fortunately in these uncertain times, Character has been able to prune back working capital while still being confident enough to continue its aggressive share buybacks. Broker Charles Stanley forecasts a fall in full-year revenues from £94.9m to £80m, flat pre-tax profits of £9m and EPS up 9 per cent to 27.75p.
|ORD PRICE:||151p||MARKET VALUE:||£33.9m|
|TOUCH:||149-153p||12-MONTH HIGH:||191p||LOW: 123p|
|DIVIDEND YIELD:||4.2%||PE RATIO:||5|
|NET ASSET VALUE:||41p*||NET DEBT:||33%|
Having flatlined for the past six months Character's shares trade on a modest prospective PE ratio of 5.5 and yield a healthy 4.2 per cent. Speculative buy.