Twenty won’t be paying a dividend this year.
The marketing services company revealed it wasn’t paying a dividend when it published its AGM notice. Twenty says that “economic conditions remain challenging” and it prefers to use its cash to grow the business. It hadn’t given any indication whether or not it would pay a final dividend when it published its 2007 figures on 15 April.
(Hopefully, management weren’t influenced by the typo in the text of the full year results statement which claimed that Twenty paid “an equity dividend of £0.97m”. The cash flow states the dividend cost was £96,541.)
To be fair, Twenty announced its maiden dividend of 0.2p a share when it published notice of its AGM in 2007. So it is being consistent in making the announcement of the passing of the dividend in the same way this year.
Last year chief executive Ian Lancaster said the maiden dividend showed the intention of the company to “pursue a progressive dividend policy”.
When new house broker Daniel Stewart published its initiation note on Twenty on 24 October 2007 it forecast that the dividend would grow by 10% a year.
However, Twenty’s performance has been disappointing. Twenty reported a drop in 2007 profits from £933,000 to £515,000 on sales 31% higher at £18.8m. Net debt was just over £3m. Back in October Daniel Stewart had been looking for profits of around £800,000 on sales of £19.5m.
The shares fell 0.25p to 8.25p following the news of the passing of the dividend, valuing Twenty at £3.98m.
The AGM is on 26 June.
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