Pennant International – higher margin software business to drive richer future earnings (Q&A) (LON: PEN)

Pennant International

Pennant International Group plc (LON:PEN) recently announced its Interim Results for the six months ended 30 June 2021. DirectorsTalk Interviews MD Darren Turgel caught up with Director of Institutional Research at WHIreland to discuss the news.

What are the key highlights from the latest results?

The results were inline with the company’s update last month and PEN remains on track for the full year, positive news; it is also good that with sales +17% YoY, losses were significantly reduced. Major contracts were delivered on time and on budget, including equipping the leading Technical Training college with which the company has been involved in Qatar.

What do the results tell us about the company’s future?

A key feature of the results was the success of the software business in the period and the mix changes on the back of this. Last year’s acquisition in this space in Q1 is strongly vindicated. Going forward, these richer earnings look set to be a key feature.

How do you view the appointment on 2nd June of John Ponsonby as the new Chairman?

We view this appointment in a very positive light. The new Chairman is (1) a distinguished military leader in a highly relevant area, promoted to Air Vice Marshal, and formerly Air Office Commanding RAF Training Group, (2) he holds significant commercial experience, again highly relevant, as former Managing Director of AgustaWestland in the UK (Leonardo); and (3) on all of these scores, he may be considered to be someone with highly exceptional knowledge of the modern landscape in which the company operates as well as the people and issue that pertain to it.

What are your thoughts on the order book?

Clearly the order book has reduced in sales terms. However the mix change is more significant in our view. This points to a future in which the company increasingly exploits its opportunities in the software space, not least following the recent launch of a completely new version of its well-established and long-standing Omega product. It is also worth noting that the “Major Programme” which has been much canvassed in the past remains alive as a potentially ground-breaking opportunity for the company, albeit not with a short timescale (but then the larger contracts are never quick to conclude).

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