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21 October 2023
By Maynard Paton

I have recorded two podcasts during October with good friends and fellow investors Roland Head, Mark Simpson and Bruce Packard:





Our Investors Roundtable Podcast discussed Bruce’s liking for Hargreaves Lansdown, why Focusrite has appeared on my radar and why Mark reckons Strix is undervalued.

Roland and I also discussed telematics specialist Quartix for the latest Private Investor’s Podcast.

During the Investors Roundtable Podcast, we covered:

Hargreaves Lansdown (750p/£3.5b):

  • Bruce recapped why Hargreaves Lansdown is a ‘quality compounder’, which prompted the following points:
    • The P/E of 12 and 6% yield, entering the wealth-management sector and strategy criticism from Peter Hargreaves.
    • The new chief executive, account popularity among private investors and charging high fees.   
    • Clients holding cash, permanently higher IT costs and future growth rates.

Focusrite (500p/£300m):

  • I recapped the attractions of Focusrite, which prompted the following points:
    • The lack of recent organic growth, returns on reinvested earnings and the replacement cycle of music equipment. 
    • New product development, the tentative latest trading statement and low free cash generation.
    • High stock levels, supply-chain issues and the potential for a founder-led sale. 

Strix (55p/£120m):

  • Mark recapped the recovery upside potential of Strix, which prompted the following points:
    • A possible EV to earnings of 7, the chief exec’s shareholding and the likelihood of another profit wobble.  
    • Previously higher debt levels, buying private-equity flotations after problems and the company’s much higher interest costs. 
    • Management’s sales targets, Mark buying after the profit warning and kettle-usage advice from cheapskate investors. 

During the Private Investor’s Podcast, Roland and I covered telematics specialist Quartix. We talked about: 

  • The commendable dividend record and attractive financials that make the company an intriguing watch-list share.
  • What the telematics service offers, the typical customers and past growth.
  • The company’s ‘scalability’, payback periods and high gross margins.
  • Customer churn, customer longevity and new customer acquisition.
  • Stagnant profit, the declining profit margin, greater employee costs and staff turnover.
  • Reduced revenue per tracker, overseas expansion and the group’s competitive advantage. 
  • Co-founder Andrew Walters’ comeback, option targets and the major institutional shareholders. 
  • July’s H1 figures, forecasts for 2023/4 and our valuation thoughts.

You can listen to both of these podcasts (and more!) through this premium podcast service >>

Happy listening!

Maynard Paton

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