Main Event a buy – by David Stephens

Staff members of Main Event

Main Event Entertainment IPO prospectus is now out, after cutting through the hype and clutter, an assessment of the company as an investment looks positive, with the stock being recommended as a buy.
The outlook for the media and entertainment industry is positive. The industry can be consider cyclical, which will benefit from overall economic growth. As companies expand operations and try to improve their client relationships, an effective media and events partner is valuable in maintaining overall brand reputation, consumer awareness and loyalty.
The industry is poised for growth as new marketing and entertainment trends emerge focusing on “experiential marketing” rather than traditional methods. In addition Jamaica is well poised to become the commercial capital of the Caribbean and this would lead to more corporate events, conferences, concerts and more, which is a direct benefit to the media and entertainment industry.
Products|The Company provides a diverse range of marketing, events and entertainment related services including equipment rental, graphic design, online marketing, project marketing and sound and video production.
The group is well established as a leader in their industry, with only 3 major competitors and a larger number of smaller players. They list their competitive advantage as being a full service company providing turnkey solutions. MEEG is involved in a number of signature events which occur annually. This provides a good source or repeat business from existing clients and a basis for new business for some of these clients.

Three directors of Main Event

MEEG has built up a good reputation in the industry, and brings a wealth of knowledge to clients. They appear well rounded and versatile in their offerings. They also own a fairly large stock of equipment which positions them to react quickly to customer demands. The company operates in a number of Caribbean territories which could present further growth opportunities regionally.
Risks/Concerns|Some risks to MEEG include:
1. Equipment becoming rapidly outdated with the emergence of new technology.
2. It is expected that this could be a very capital intensive business. Their decision to own equipment rather than lease could also be one that hurts them in the long run.
3. A lot of their revenues appear to be derived from a few major clients. This could prove detrimental should they lose one or more of these customers or their profits could be eroded due to increased competition.
4. Intercompany contracts surrounding sourcing of equipment etcetera, is of concern but this may have been done for greater tax efficiency purposes.
Financial Highlights|The company appears to be running short on cash with the proceeds of IPO helping to alleviate the pressure. Net earnings should increase once finance costs are reduced.
At current valuation, the company is trading at just over 2 times book value (inclusive of the cash raised from the IPO)
At the offer price, the company is trading at 10 times last year’s earnings, based on the new number of shares assuming no new income from the capital to be raised. The estimated 2016 earnings is put at $0.23 and estimated 2017 earnings at $0.33 (earnings could be closer to $0.40 per share if debt is reduced and gross profits improved.)
Based on these projections, the stock price using a market PE of 15 could reach a price of about $5 in the next 12 months.
David Stephens is an individual investor in local and international stocks.

Main Event priced to bounce

The Main Event Entertainment Group Initial Public offer of shares seem set to deliver a strong increase in share price once the stock list on the junior market probably in February. There are a number of positives to greet the issue.
The stock market is in a bull run currently. The stock is priced at just $2 which many small investors will be attracted to. The historical PE is just 7, compared to an average of 15 for junior market stocks, based on 2016 earnings. IC is projecting earnings in the order of $100 million for 2017, assuming a 15 percent revenue gain, for earnings per share of 33 cents. Based on this, the stock should more than double in 2017.
The company grew revenues by 11 percent in 2016 over 2015 to an estimated $1.13 billion and by 55 percent over 2014 while that for 2013 was flat at $517 million. The company indicates that they had to recently turn away business due to capacity constraints which the fresh capital will fix.
Gross profit has been strong at 36 to 38 percent level in 2016, but it may be somewhat lower, as some items in administrative and general expenses may be directly related to events, rather than overheads.
Main Event,should benefit from the strong growth in the tourism sector and pickup in economic activity locally, that should see a greater number of Jamaicans patronising entertainment events, allowing for more events to be staged.
Importantly, the profile of the company will grow with the listing, as they benefit from daily exposure based on trading activity. The expanded directorship and regular examination of operations by the board and the infusion of capital will result in even better performance going forward and that should boost revenues and hold cost in check. This is a factor that should not be lost on investors.
Only 60 million shares are being sold, with few being available to the general public. The issue opens at 9 am, Tuesday 24 January and is likely to close at the same time. On the negative side, the company suffered a large fall in digital signage income with $75 million inflows in the 11 months to September 2016 from $139 million in the similar period in 2015. Receivables tend to be on the high side of nearly 2 months of sales, tying up nearly $100 million in excess of normal levels, while payables are running at 2.3 months at $181 million.
IC is according an investment in the stock to be BUY RATED.

A unique listing could be your next IPO

UCC LogoThere is no listing even close to the next likely listing slated after Main Event comes to market, on the Jamaica Stock Exchange. It has no walls, no buildings, no one place of business, no borders, yet it could be a most profitable venture for investors.
Mayberry Investments, the broker bringing the Main Event IPO to market seems set to be the broker bringing this unique listing to the market by January as the Jamaica Stock Exchange opens up to some never before thought of companies that can be listed.
The junior market started off with a most unique company, Access Financial in 2010. That it was a financial entity was not unique, but lending to the lower end of the market was seen by many as a sure way to give away capital and making good Profit was unique at least to stock market investors. The IPO was greeted by howls of outcry of the rape that the promoters were inflicting on the investing public. History has proven the naysayers wrong and that first listing set the stage for one of the most successful ventures that the local stock exchange has pursued.
Jetcon, a used car dealer, caused the eyes of many to pop in bewilderment as they never conceived that such a venture could interest investors much less prosper. Main Event can be considered unique but the next listing lined up, is so different from the others, that it is bound to cause investors to wonder and ponder about it for a long time.

Gary Peart of Mayberry, the lead man for the IPOs Mayberry handles.

Gary Peart of Mayberry, the lead man for the IPOs Mayberry handles.

UCC Online is the online segment of University College of the Caribbean which will be hived off into a separate company to be listed on the junior market. IC Insider’s sources indicate that the IPO could be in January, subject to a few matters being ironed out for the issue. The income for the year is said to be in the order of $50 million with very high profit margin, with growth in income said to be in double digits.
Since 2010, UCC has extended the opportunities for students in Jamaica and the Caribbean to experience a higher education through its online accredited degree programmes.
The prospectus is at an advanced stage with a few matters to be sorted out IC Insider source stated.

Main Event IPO within 2 weeks

Main Ev SignWith revenues posited to be in the range of $1 billion to $1.5 billion for 2015, Main Event Entertainment should be coming to the public within two weeks subject to Financial Securities Commission effectively signing off on the prospectus.
The company is expected to raise between $100 million to $200 million at a price between $1.50 and $3.50, stockbroker for the deal, Gary Peart of Mayberry Investments told investors at a briefing today. IC Insider gathers that the amount to be raised, is likely to be $150 million, putting the PE ratio in the 10-12 range.
According to Peart, the valuation for the company is in the range of $500 million – $700 million. Between 20 to 40 percent of the shares will be offered in the IPO. Proceeds of the issue will be used to expand services particularly to Montego Bay where Solomon Sharp, Chief Executive says has a big market for his products and services. Funds will also be put into new equipment to meet increasing demand. According to Sharp, demand is such that they have had to turn away business. The additional equipment will allow for more business to be undertaken simultaneously.
Main Event Entertainment Group, a unique company that is in the business of management of event as well as producing their own production. The company provides event management, production, audio, video, lighting, staging, roofing, power supply, digital signage and management, concept development, creative development, infrastructural build-outs.

Three of the company's directors

Three of the company’s directors

The company generates revenues from Digital boards spread across 22 countries in the Caribbean some a few Central American countries mostly for screens in Digicel stores with more than 100 screens for which they generate up US$225 for month for maintaining and updating them. They also supply and service menu boards for other entities with the latest to sign on being Wendy’s on board, the company provide outdoor signage in the form of advertising billboards.
The principals include Solomon Sharpe, CEO and formerly of Desnoes and Geddes, Richard Bair, Chief Operating Officer, formerly employed at Porter Brothers and Donna Waithe, Director HR and Administration with 23 years of experience in the aviation sector at Air Jamaica. The company was established 2004 and employs between 51 and 200 full time and part time employees.
The Board of directors include Hugh Graham, Solomon Sharpe, Donna Waithe, Richard Bair, Tania Waldron-Gooden, Harriat Maragh, chairman and Dr. Ian Blair.
The company have as its clients many blue chip Jamaican companies, including Scotia Group, National Commercial Bank, Flow, Desnoes and Geddes to name a few.

Main Event Entertainment set for junior market

Main EvntIt now appears that the junior market is again open for business, well sort of. Attracted by the tax free status, junior listings received, the planned phasing out of the tax free element, resulted in the last listing taking place in March this year, just days before the tax break for new listings was to have ended.
The new government elected in February, promised full restoration of the tax status. The senate recently passed legislation allowing for special tax regime for junior market listed companies to continue, opening up the market place for unleashing a new wave of listings.
Come Friday, Mayberry Investments officially launches their latest IPO with an Investor briefing for Main Event Entertainment Group, a unique company that is in the business of management. The business is that of event management, production, promotions, and digital signage. More specifically they provide event management, production, audio, video, lighting, staging, roofing, power supply, digital signage and management, concept development, creative development, infrastructural build-outs.
The principals include Solomon Sharpe CEO and formerly of Desnoes and Geddes, Richard Bair, Chief Operating Officer, formerly employed at Porter Brothers and Donna Waithe, Director HR and Administration with 23 years of experience in the aviation sector at Air Jamaica. The company was established 2004 and employs between 51 to 200 full time and part time employees.

18 new IPOs for 2017

JM SignThe Jamaica Stock Exchange is expecting at least 14 new listings of ordinary share in 2017, Marlene Street-Forrest, General Manager of the Stock Exchange told IC Street-Forrest says “this is information provided by brokers as well as enquiries made to the exchange, by interested companies.”
Two bond issues are also expected to be listed as well. There is the possibility of another listing which could be a relisting of a company that was previously listed years ago.
Ten new listings are slated for the junior market with 4 coming for the main market. Listings could start from as early as January or February.
The industries the potential junior market listed companies are involved in include one from information technology, two from the financial sector including a micro finance entity, a restaurant operation,

Minister of Finance Audley Shaw has restored junior market tax break.

Minister of Finance Audley Shaw has restored junior market tax break.

one in entertainment, a university and possibly one form the agricultural sector. Those slated for the main market include a financial sector and information technology and includes one from a group that have has two other entities from the group that are already listed.
The junior market listing activity was stalled while the business sector awaited the restoration of the tax incentive for the junior market. That legislation was passed by the senate on Friday Mrs Street-Forrest confirmed to IC Insider. The last listing of ordinary shares on the junior market was in March just ahead of the planned phasing out of tax free status for new listings on the exchange.
If the listings materialise, they would swell the junior market by a third and take the total listings on the exchange to more than 100, with the number of ordinary share listings to 80.

Portland JSX over

VM Wealth were the brokers for the IPO.

VM Wealth were the brokers for the IPO.

More than 550 applicants banked $1.52 billion on the prospect of Portland JSX Limited delivering superior returns for them. The company offered 111,818,812 ordinary shares at $11 each in an initial public offering on June 6 to raise $1.23 billion. Investors demanded 23.5 percent more than the amount offered and the company took it all.
VM Wealth Management advised that the Portland JSX IPO closed on June 22, with the offer oversubscribed and raising $1.52 billion, said lead broker VM Wealth Management.
The terms of the prospectus allowed the directors the right to accept subscriptions in excess of the stated raise and will issue and allot additional Shares to satisfy as much of the applications in excess of the stated raise as they, in their sole discretion, shall determine appropriate.
It is the intention of the Company to apply to the Jamaica Stock Exchange for admission of the ordinary shares to the main market.
The invitation to investors stated, “Many investment opportunities remain in essential services throughout the Caribbean, and Fund II is well positioned to pursue them.” DOUGLAS HEWSON, Chairman of Portland JSX stated in the prospectus.
Hewson further stated “With Fund II, Portland is seeking to replicate the success of Fund I – in simple terms, it is the same team executing the same strategy but with the benefits of lessons learned. Our view is that the Caribbean remains overlooked and underserved by equity capital providers. With Fund II, we continue our strategy of investing in scalable businesses in defensive industries while exploiting this capital gap for the benefit of our investors.Port JSX The Team believes we are off to a good start. We have closed on USD136 million with leading global emerging market investors, have completed three investments in sectors we find very attractive on a risk adjusted basis (wind energy, telecommunications and financial services), have a strong pipeline of investment opportunities, and have an investment team that is passionate about making a difference. As an investor increasing its capital commitment to Fund II, PJX and, by extension PJX shareholders, will benefit from a look-back into current fund portfolio.”
The Company is incorporated in St Lucia in September 2015 and the business of the Company is to invest as a Limited Partner in Portland Caribbean Fund II which in turn invests in other businesses over a period of several years.
The performance of the Company is highly dependent on the timing of these investments. The Company intends to use the proceeds of the IPO to invest primarily as a limited partner in Portland Caribbean Fund II, which holds a portfolio of equity or debt securities of companies, located in the Caribbean and Latin America the majority of which, over the life of PCF II, are expected to be private. According to the prospectus, PCF II’s objective is to provide above average returns over the long term primarily by investing in undervalued companies with good potential. The industry focus is telecommunications, financial services and energy.
At the time of the IPO the company issued 170,926,161 ordinary shares and the issue brings the total to 309 million units. The company intends to distribute one hundred percent of distributable net profits as dividends.
IC Insider views investment in the company as one for long-term returns, with the hope that the businesses the funds are invested in deliver a good rate of return. The full allocation for all applicants will mean that there will be reduced demand after listing as it appears most demand for the stock has been filled.

Eppley seeks $317m from right issue

eppleyEppley limited, providers of insurance premium financing, is expected to raise $317 million from its renounceable rights issue of ordinary shares, when it offers 487,703 new ordinary shares priced at $650 to ordinary stockholders this month. The record date for the issue is Friday 6 May and the date for the stock to start trading ex rights, is May 4.
Proceeds from the rights will doubled the company’s existing equity capital of $314 million and improve the debt to equity ratio which is heavily weighted towards medium term redeemable preference shares with total borrowings of $997 million at the end of March, this year.
The company reported a 17.7 percent increase in profit after tax for the first quarter this year, of $10.6 million over the $8.7 million made in the first quarter of 2015. Profit for 2015 financial year ended at $56.5 Million.
Since the company announced plans for the issue, the price moved from $400.01 to $650 in this morning’s trading for an increase of 62.5 percent. The proceeds will allow them to expand their offerings and or pay down debt.
Eppley is listed on the junior market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, and last traded at $650 with a PE ratio of 8.

Jetcon listing slated for Thursday

Jetcon 03-16Jetcon Corporation coming on the heels of a successful issue of shares to the public that opened on Monday March 14, in respect of 44,500,000 ordinary shares is expected to start trading on Thursday, March 24 with the listing committee meeting on Tuesday to consider and approve the listing.
The offer closed shortly after opening on Monday after it was oversubscribed. A total of 256 applications covering $113 million were received. Applications of all reserved shares were fully satisfied while the general public got the first 5,000 Shares applied plus 83.11 percent of the balance. The shares were sold to the public at $2.25 each. the closure left some investors out in the cold as they missed the early closing time of the offer.
Listing on the junior market will result in no corporate taxes being paid for 5 years from the time of listing. Jetcon reported profit of $50.6 million for the 2015 year and enjoyed 45 percent increased revenues for the first two months of 2016 ahead of the similar period in 2015, accordingly, IC Insider rate the stock Buy Rated.

ISP Finance – next junior listing

I$PISP Finance is an unsecure loan company that is seeking to list on the junior market of the Jamaica stock Exchange with the raising just over $97 million from directors staff and the general public.
The company is now offering 48,982,500 ordinary shares to the public of which 45,900,000 are reserved for directors and employees, at $2 per share. Only a small amount, 3 million units will be available for the general public unless the reserved shares are not fully taken up. Opening Date of the offer is March 21, 2016.
ISP started operating in 2007 and has a number of years of profitability but is yet to wipe out accumulated losses. Currently there are 56 million shares issued to the Chief executive Dennis Smith and his wife. In 2015 the company reported audited profit of $30.7 million before tax but benefited from a refund of captive insurance premium of $12.3 million, excluding this, the company made profit of just $6 million. Additionally, salaries cost fell to $62.5 million from $77.6 million. While 2014 showed a loss of $4.5 million before tax after booking insurance premium of $41.7 million, excluding this amount would result in profit of just over $36 million or earnings per share of 65 cents. The earnings based on 2015 results, adjusted for the one off income, would be 10.7 cents and 65 cents for 2014. The PE based on pretax profit would be 18.7 times 2015 earnings and just 3 times 2014 numbers.
In the first four years of operation the Company’s customers were primarily employees from the security services sector. The Company has since expanded its customer base to other private and public sector workers as well as to micro and small entrepreneurs in the manufacturing, services and distribution sectors.
ISP Finance intends to strategically expand its reach geographically to other areas where there is a concentration of employed individuals and business development, including Montego Bay, Ocho Rios, Mandeville, Spanish Town, Portmore and May Pen.
The Company utilizes cash generated by the business and loans from a variety of sources to fund loans to customers. Indebtedness to banks, financial institutions and other lenders amounts to $218 million as of February 11, 2016.
Since commencing business in February 2007, the Company’s Loan portfolio has grown from approximately $2.5 million to $304 million in 2015 before provision for loan losses. Loan loss provision stood at $62 million at the end of 2015 compared with $44.5 million at the end of 2014. Loan loss expense for 2015 amounted to $18.6 or 7.75 percent of net loans and is favorable compared with Access Financial at 8.9 percent. Interest rates on loans ranges from 50 to 65 percent.
Clifton Cameron is an Independent, Non-executive Director and Chairman of the Board. He was a major owner of Manufacturers Merchant Bank that was acquired by Sagicor Bank.
The results for 2015 looks disappointing with just a small profit but results for 2014 when adjusted for the high level of insurance cost looks very promising. The company is involved in high risk business with loan provisioning amounting to 20 percent of overall loan portfolio an increase from 15.7 percent at the end of 2014. Expansion if not managed well can be costly but they will face strong competition in the market with much bigger companies than themselves.
At the end of 2015 equity capital was negative $7 million with accumulated deficit of $12 million, down from a deficit of $39 million at the end of 2014.
ISP is not the last company slated fro the junior market as IC Insider gathers that Key Insurance Company is also set to offer shares to the public to try and make the junior listing before the end of March.