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Palace directors bet the farm

Four directors of regional property company Palace Capital subscribed for a collective £760,000-worth of shares in a placing to fund a transformational acquisition

Not for the first time, the experienced chairman of regional property group Palace Capital (PCA) is putting his money where his mouth is. Stanley Davis, aged 75, plumped for nearly £500,000-worth of shares in a recent £20m placing priced at 310p a share. Three other directors followed suit and snapped up another £260,000 collectively.

IC TIP: Buy at 310p

The placing is part of a £32m deal to buy 17 properties from an unlisted property investment company that ran into difficulties after entering into costly interest rate swap arrangements just before the financial crisis. Palace’s strategy is to pick up regional and secondary property at a knock-down price - the portfolio was independently valued at £59m in March 2007 - and actively manage the portfolio to reduce vacancies and improve yields.

Mr Davis has form here. Palace has swiftly turned round a portfolio of mixed-use commercial property from Quintain Estates acquired in late 2013 for £39m; alongside a broadly rising UK property market, the company's book value per share increased by a whopping 54 per cent in just six months to 356p a share as of 31 March. If you had followed Mr Davis’ advice at the time of that acquisition and invested when he did - subscribing for £2.6m in a corresponding placing priced at 200p a share - you would be one happy shareholder indeed.

Buys
CompanyDirectorDateNo of sharesPrice (p)Value (£)Holding (shares)Holding (%)
Aberdeen Asian Income Fund PAK Arthur (ch)22 Aug 14241207.550041,9010.022
AGA Rangemaster  Shaun Smith (fd)22 Aug 143,8461576,038171,8430.248
AGA Rangemaster  William McGrath (ce)22 Aug 146,41015710,064247,6960.358
APC Technology  Leonard Seelig (ch)27 Aug 1439,49637.914,969128,6490.220
APC Technology ♥ Leonard Seelig (ch)27 Aug 1439,49637.914,969126,4710.216
BlackRock Throgmorton Trust The Rt Hon L Latymer (ch)26 Aug 1451290.514830,8430.042
BlackRock Throgmorton Trust ESC Stobart26 Aug 14170290.549421,3350.029
BlackRock Throgmorton Trust SD Beart26 Aug 14160290.546532,0700.044
BlackRock Throgmorton Trust SD Beart26 Aug 14176290.551132,2460.044
Braveheart Investment  TE Brown22 Aug 141,315,43912.5164,4306,858,98325.352
Glencore Patrice Merrin26 Aug 1440,000361.04144,41640,000<0.001
Gresham Computing ♥M Royde21 Aug 1437,500116.99243,8725,913,1549.351
Imaginatik Matt Cooper (ch)21 Aug 1450,00052,50013,220,31721.411
Imagination Technologies  Kate Rock22 Aug 1410,000201.520,15010,0000.004
Jersey Electricity Geoffrey Grime (ch)22 Aug 143,0003289,84010,0000.086
JPMorgan Russian Securities A Easton27 Aug 142,018443.138,94212,0180.023
Martin Currie Pacific Trust G Shenkman21 Aug 145,072293.514,8865,0720.013
Murray Income Trust ♥PAF Gifford (ch)22 Aug 14128776.599441,1730.061
Palace Capital *Neil Sinclair27 Aug 1419,35431059,997173,7670.866
Palace Capital *Stanley Davis (ch)27 Aug 14161,290310499,9991,565,2877.797
Palace Capital *Anthony Dove27 Aug 1432,258310100,00075,2580.375
Palace Capital *Richard Starr27 Aug 1432,258310100,00082,2580.410
Partnership Assurance  Steve Groves (ce)22 Aug 14100,000117117,0009,601,5342.400
Primary Health Properties Steven Owen27 Aug 14883347.683,0708,4740.008
Primary Health Properties Steven Owen27 Aug 14886346.753,0727,5910.007
PZ Cussons Brandon Leigh (cfo)27 Aug 1418,06937167,036118,2970.028
QinetiQ ♥  Michael Harper27 Aug 1410,000214.8121,48130,0000.005
SABMiller John Manser (ch)27 Aug 143,0003,318.1999,5468,000<0.001
SABMiller Jan du Plessis01 Sep 1430,0003,312.50993,750nana
Standard Chartered Andy Halford (fd)26 Aug 142,0001,226.8524,5372,000<0.001
SThree Gary Elden (ce)22 Aug 1433,614003,217,7332.587
Tangent Communications David Steyn27 Aug 14250,000820,000550,0000.198
TT electronics John Shakeshaft22 Aug 145,9361679,91357,1420.036

* placing/tender/open offer ♥ spouse/connected party † In respect of voting rights held indirectly by ARCADIS N.V.

Sells
CompanyDirectorDateNo of sharesPrice (p)Value (£)Holding (shares)Holding (%)
BAE Systems Paul Anderson21 Aug 1450,000442.2221,10010,000<0.001
BHP Billiton Andrew Mackenzie (ce)21 Aug 1431,8091,952620,912266,1640.013
Boot (Henry) John Sutcliffe (fd)27 Aug 1410,00020420,400502,9550.383
First Quantum Minerals Peter St George26 Aug 1435,00000471,6600.079
Hyder Consulting †Russell Down (fd)21 Aug 1445,000730328,50000
Hyder Consulting †Jeffrey Hume (ch)21 Aug 1410,00073073,00000
Hyder Consulting †Ivor Catto (ce)21 Aug 14170,6477301,245,72300
Hyder Consulting †Kevin Taylor21 Aug 147,49073054,67700
Hyder Consulting †Paul Withers21 Aug 1450,000730365,00000
PHSC Stephen King (ce)26 Aug 1430,000309,0003,203,10025.248
Ultra Electronics Holdings Christopher Bailey22 Aug 142,5001,81545,37500

* placing/tender/open offer ♥ spouse/connected party † In respect of voting rights held indirectly by ARCADIS N.V.