Tasty: Radical Management Action Urgently Required As Estimated Pandemic Cash Burn Could Leave Company Broke By November

01 July 2020
By Maynard Paton

Results summary for Tasty (TAST):

  • Largely redundant annual figures that revealed revenue down 6% and another operating loss.
  • TAST’s 56 restaurants were shut in March and my estimates suggest the group could survive without sales until November.
  • The second half seemed encouraging after Christmas bookings were helped by a turkey-themed festive menu.
  • A £2m property disposal bolstered cash and cleared debt but significant liabilities remain.
  • The £2.8m market cap could be a bargain, but radical management action is now essential to keep the business afloat. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Radical Management Action Urgently Required As Estimated Pandemic Cash Burn Could Leave Company Broke By November

My Portfolio: Year In Review 2019

10 January 2020
By Maynard Paton

Happy January!

I trust you enjoyed the festive break and are now ready to battle the market for another twelve months!

This 5,562-word post provides a ‘year in review’ of my current portfolio holdings. I recap how each of the underlying businesses performed during 2019, as well as provide a few remarks about valuation.

As I mentioned this time last year, I find writing such reviews extremely useful — not least because I double-check my investment logic to ensure I am still invested for the right reasons! The upsets I will suffer during 2020 will most likely be caused by the shares I already own rather than by new shares I purchase.

Read moreMy Portfolio: Year In Review 2019

Tasty: Woeful H1 Results Leave Shareholders Relying On Bumper Christmas Bookings To Avert Terminal Cash Trauma

07 November 2019
By Maynard Paton

Results summary for Tasty (TAST):

  • Woeful figures showed weaker revenue and greater losses — with the excuses this time including Brexit rather than unfavourable weather and the World Cup.
  • A £3m equity placing has shored up the balance sheet, while an absence of further write-offs and utilised provisions lends support to turnaround hopes. 
  • This year’s Christmas performance is crucial, with TAST going all out to capture festive-party bookings. Management’s outlook remarks seemed encouraging.
  • Poor Christmas trade causing further cash flow traumas could leave TAST no option but to de-list.  
  • The market cap is £4.1m for sales of £45m from 57 restaurants. I continue to bravely/stupidly hold.

Read moreTasty: Woeful H1 Results Leave Shareholders Relying On Bumper Christmas Bookings To Avert Terminal Cash Trauma

Tasty: Equity Placing On The Way As Results Offer Glimmers Of Hope Amid Further Losses And Significant Debt

22 March 2019
By Maynard Paton

Results verdict on Tasty (TAST):

  • Miserable figures blighted by debts and losses that confirmed — albeit within the small-print — that an equity placing is on the way.
  • The shares are now a gamble based on how much shareholders are asked to raise and at what price.
  • Second-half trading offered hope through greater cash generation alongside improved sales per restaurant and per employee.
  • Restaurants continue to be sold for cash although current trading was described as “slow”.
  • Market cap now £4.2m for sales of £47m and 58 restaurants. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Equity Placing On The Way As Results Offer Glimmers Of Hope Amid Further Losses And Significant Debt

My Portfolio: Year In Review 2018

01 January 2019
By Maynard Paton

Happy New Year!

I trust you enjoyed the festive break and are now raring to do battle with the market for another twelve months!

This first Blog post of 2019 provides a ‘year in review’ of my current portfolio holdings. I recap how each of the underlying businesses performed during 2018, as well as provide a few remarks about valuation.

Read moreMy Portfolio: Year In Review 2018

Tasty: Hapless Restaurant Chain Reveals Dismal H1 Loss Although Some Outlets Are Apparently ‘Outperforming Expectations’

25 September 2018
By Maynard Paton

Update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Interim results for the 26 weeks to 1 July 2018 published 21 September 2018.

Summary: The hapless restaurant chain delivered a rather dismal — but not completely disastrous — set of first-half figures. “Unfavourable” weather was partly blamed for underlying sales falling approximately 4%, which in turn led to an operating loss. The numbers also carried a further substantial write-down while net debt jumped following adverse cash movements. But recovery hopes still remain — costs have been cut, menus have been re-jigged and some sites are even “outperforming expectations”. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Hapless Restaurant Chain Reveals Dismal H1 Loss Although Some Outlets Are Apparently ‘Outperforming Expectations’

Tasty: Phew! Not Heading For Bankruptcy Just Yet As £4m Property Proceeds And £1m Underlying Profit Compare To £8m Market Cap

13 March 2018
By Maynard Paton

Update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Preliminary results for the 52 weeks to 31 December 2017 published 13 March 2018

Summary: Phew! I had thought TAST’s plunging share price was signalling these results would be accompanied by an emergency equity placing. As it turns out, the beleaguered restaurant chain continues to report a profit and has surprised me by raising £4m — equivalent to half of its market cap — from two property transactions. Furthermore, management now has a proper turnaround plan in place, the second half showed a few glimmers of hope while the upside could be considerable if a recovery ever occurs. I have bought more shares, both before and after these results.

Read moreTasty: Phew! Not Heading For Bankruptcy Just Yet As £4m Property Proceeds And £1m Underlying Profit Compare To £8m Market Cap

My Portfolio: Year In Review 2017

01 January 2018
By Maynard Paton

Happy New Year!

I trust you have enjoyed the festive break and are now raring to do battle with the market for another twelve months!

This first Blog post of 2018 provides a ‘year in review’ of my current portfolio holdings. I recap how each of the underlying businesses performed during 2017, as well as provide a few remarks about valuation.

Read moreMy Portfolio: Year In Review 2017

Tasty: Grim H1 Results Reveal Huge £9.3m Write-Off, But Recovery Hopes Remain As Management Finally Shows Greater Turnaround Urgency

12 September 2017
By Maynard Paton

Quick update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Interim results for the 26 weeks to 02 July 2017 published 12 September 2017

Summary: These results were always going to be somewhat grim, and news of a £9.3m write-off suggests about a third of TAST’s restaurant estate has now suffered trading problems during the last 18 months. At least the board is currently showing greater urgency with its turnaround plan and I would like to think these figures mark the low point for the group’s finances. I continue to believe the long-term upside could be considerable if a successful recovery one day prompts further restaurant expansion. I continue to hold. 

Read moreTasty: Grim H1 Results Reveal Huge £9.3m Write-Off, But Recovery Hopes Remain As Management Finally Shows Greater Turnaround Urgency

Tasty: Annual Results Dish Up Unsavoury Profit Warning And 33% Share-Price Sickener

28 March 2017
By Maynard Paton

Quick update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Preliminary results for the 53 weeks to 01 January 2017 published 28 March 2017

Summary: Oh dear — I did not expect these annual results to include a profit warning for 2017. The share price has dropped by a third and I’m no longer so sure the long-term potential here is as great as I had assumed. That said, the restaurant group’s 2016 figures were not too bad while the lowered rate of expansion looks far more achievable based on current cash flow. Everything now rests on the experienced managers to resolve the problems — which I think they can. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Annual Results Dish Up Unsavoury Profit Warning And 33% Share-Price Sickener

My Portfolio: Year In Review 2016

01 January 2017
By Maynard Paton

Happy New Year!

I trust you enjoyed the festive break and are now raring to do battle with the market for another twelve months!

This first Blog post of 2017 provides a ‘year-in-review’ of my current portfolio holdings. I recap how each of the underlying businesses performed during 2016, as well as provide a few remarks about valuation.

As I mentioned this time last year, I find writing such reviews extremely useful — not least because it encourages me to double-check my investment logic to ensure I am still invested for all the right reasons!

Read moreMy Portfolio: Year In Review 2016

Tasty: I Felt Uneasy Ahead Of These Results And Sold Some Shares

06 September 2016
By Maynard Paton

Quick update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Interim results for the 27 weeks to 03 July 2016 published 06 September 2016

Summary: These results were very mixed. I am pleased the restaurant chain’s revenue growth has improved following the ‘blip’ in the second half of last year, but disappointed the roll-out plan has slowed a little. Margins have also shrunk due to greater expansion costs. Mind you, the board here remains a class act while the longer-term potential is still considerable. I sold some shares before these results and I continue to hold the rest.

Read moreTasty: I Felt Uneasy Ahead Of These Results And Sold Some Shares

Tasty: Profit Up 28% But I Am Not Entirely Satisfied

30 March 2016
By Maynard Paton

Quick update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Preliminary results for the 52 weeks to 27 December 2015 published 30 March

Summary: An acceptable but not a spectacular set of results from this restaurant group, with the second half showing a slower rate of expansion. I also note revenue per outlet has declined while management is hinting strongly at greater investment spend. Nonetheless, the board is a class act, the opening schedule for new restaurants is accelerating and the longer-term potential remains sizeable. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Profit Up 28% But I Am Not Entirely Satisfied

My Portfolio: Year In Review 2015

01 January 2016
By Maynard Paton

Happy New Year!

I trust you enjoyed the festive break and are now raring to do battle with the market for another twelve months!

This first Blog post of 2016 provides a short ‘year-in-review’ of each of my current portfolio holdings.

As I mentioned at the start of 2015, I find writing such reviews extremely useful — not least because it encourages me to double-check my investment logic to ensure I am still invested for all the right reasons!

Read moreMy Portfolio: Year In Review 2015

Tasty: Accelerated Expansion Supports Multi-Bagger Hopes 

08 September 2015
By Maynard Paton

Quick update on Tasty (TAST).

Event: Interim results published 8 September

Summary: A very satisfactory set of results, with highlights including higher margins and a further acceleration of new restaurant openings. It certainly appears as if TAST will expand using debt rather than equity, though further borrowings will be needed for the business to become self-funding. I remain convinced the family management here can replicate its earlier success at Prezzo (PRZ) and can perhaps quadruple TAST’s market cap. I continue to hold.

Read moreTasty: Accelerated Expansion Supports Multi-Bagger Hopes