Market report: Paysafe fighting back with £100m vote of confidence

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Digital payments firm Paysafe put its money where its mouth is today, silencing the doubters with a £100 million share buyback.

The FTSE 250 company, which last week was forced to reject claims by an anonymous short-seller that it was facilitating illegal gambling in China, said it would start buying back shares over the next 12 months to take advantage of the weak  share price.

Paysafe, which owns the Skrill and Neteller businesses, said it thinks the share price “significantly undervalues the performance of the business to date and our future prospects”, adding that it would consider more buybacks even if the price rises.

The shares dived as much as 30% within minutes of last Tuesday’s bear raid and investors took  little notice when it issued a  swift rebuttal.

Since then, however, they have begun to claw back some of the lost ground and made more headway today, surging 15.9p, or 4.7%, to 358p, just 20p short of the price before last week’s attack, as investors hailed management’s show of faith.

In the face of acts of terrorism in Germany and Turkey, investors were resilient, with the FTSE 100 down just 9.63 points at 7007.53.

Travel stocks usually trade in the red after such atrocities, but easyJet was up 4p at 1038p and Tui unchanged at 1123p.

Shares in GlaxoSmithKline rose 4p to 1537p after signs that its plan to reduce the number of drugs needed to treat HIV was working.

Satellite firm Inmarsat flew 14.5p higher to 752p after completing  the first flight trials for Iris Precursor, a project to revamp the air  traffic control systems over European airspace.

Analysts at Numis gave Pets at Home a boost as they rated the company add, one notch below buy, in their first review of the business, lifting the shares 1.7p to 234.9p.

“Despite the meaningful near-term challenges facing the business, we believe the scale, quality and visibility of the long-term growth  opportunity…should support a material premium to the general retailers,” said Numis’s retail guru Andrew Wade.

Construction firm Kier Group accelerated 11.36p higher  to 1405.36p as it won a £140 million contract to repair and maintain  a section of motorway which stretches from north Lancashire  to Cumbria.

Among the minnows, fallen AIM star Avanti Communications rocketed 2p, or 9.5%, to 23p after concluding its strategic review. 

The satellite data firm today revealed it has abandoned a sale after several lowball offers and launched a $242 million (£194 million) refinancing, underwritten by its core bondholders.

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December 21, 2016 |
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