What a brutal and miserable month. Just about every commentator is saying that the bull market is over and that the spectre of inflation is deflating the equity bubble. Throw in a shipping industry that can't get its act together, a looming energy crisis and a rise in unemployment as furlough ends and you have a crisis in confidence if nothing else. At times like this I just ignore my portfolio and get on with my day job. If I was going to panic I would have done it by now.
Over half of my portfolio holdings provide services that are technical or digital with no requirement to make or ship anything. This doesn't insulate them from wage inflation, or market sentiment as a whole, but otherwise issues in the physical world make little difference to them. So you might well ask why Gamma Communications has fallen over 20% from its ATH in September? The selling volume is elevated (obviously!) which is at odds with the strong HY results and positive outlook. Equally Belvoir has dropped a similar amount despite having a decent level of earnings resilience from its lettings and financial services segments. For sure the house sale market will cool from its currently elevated levels but the decline looks relatively controlled and Belvoir is more than a simple estate agent.
Still a number of my companies are directly exposed to transport issues as they're fighting for limited volume, paying extortionate shipping rates and suffering extensive delays. I'd say that Boohoo, Luceco, Tandem and UPGS represent my greatest exposure here with all of them reporting issues around container availability and input cost inflation. Fortunately these account for only 10% of my portfolio so the risk is contained while upside potential is retained (particularly so with Boohoo). On the flipside I believe that the logistics operators (DX, Menzies and Clipper Logistics) will benefit from the current transport disruption as customers seek additional help and online shopping remains powerfully attractive. There could easily be some short-term pain, from additional fuel and staff costs, but longer term they are in an attractive space.
Finally about 7% of my portfolio is directly exposed to commodities and that's been a real drag this year. Falling demand from China, ongoing shortages of computer chips and weak sentiment has weighed heavily on this sector for months. Even so metal prices remain high, despite recent falls, and these miners are generating an awful lot of cash. With limited opportunity to re-invest these funds they're choosing to pay this excess cash out to shareholders. This is why Central Asia Metals, Ferrexpo and Sylvania Platinum are effectively on 7-8% yields at the moment which is quite remarkable. It won't last for ever but with miners also offering some inflation protection (in theory at least) I'm happy to place some of my funds in the sector.
Anyway here's the bad news: my portfolio dropped a scarcely believable 9.2% during September wiping out most of my gains for this year. As a result my YTD performance has been slashed to +4.5%. Volatility sucks.
Risers: AFX 11%, VLX 5%, CLX 3%
Fallers: SDG -1%, TND -1%, SPSY -2%, CMCL -2%, K3C -3%, RWS -4%, CER -4%, SCT -4%, KNOS -4%, TM17 -4%, MNZS -5%, G4M -5%, BOTB -7%, GMR -7%, DRV -7%, CCC -7%, SLP -9%, BUR -10%, CLG -11%, GAW -11%, CAML -11%, GAN -12%, DX. -13%, FXPO -14%, UPGS -16%, STAF -16%, GAMA -20%, BLV -21%, BOO -23%, LUCE -38%
Robert Walters Bought at 695p
I picked Robert Walters to present to the September Stock Slam without having more than a suspicion that it was a recruiter in a good place to do well. A little more analysis revealed that the company has put out a sequence of positive trading updates this year but with little impact on the share price. I think the reason for this is that the current price is approaching the ATH of ~800p last reached three years ago. This means that there are a lot of stale holders out there who are happy just to get out at break-even. I can understand their thinking but at the same time Robert Walters has survived the pandemic and is now benefitting from a strong tailwind as economies get back to business. Add on a tight labour market along with wage inflation and you're looking at the perfect conditions for a recruitment firm. I expect the coming Q3 trading update to be very positive.
For more background take a look at this Capital Markets Day Presentation.
Telecom Plus Bought at 1179p
Like many others I've been caught up in the energy crisis as my household supplier has gone bust. Fortunately the regulator has found me a supplier of last resort but you can be sure that my fuel bills are on the way up. This is why I took a hard look at switching to the Utility Warehouse. Unlike other energy suppliers UW has a 20-year wholesale agreement with EON which means that they are entirely hedged against commodity price volatility. As a result they're ready to accept new customers. In fact they've been waiting for exactly this moment for quite a while and are ready to move from 650,000 customers now to over 1 million. That's quite a jump and yet the share price is 15% below where it started the year after a slow start. Fortunately that leaves a decent opportunity for the private investor to take advantage before the HY results in November.
Luceco Sold at 384p - 60.9% gain
I was pretty happy with the HY results this month but other investors were less sanguine. There are clear short-term cost pressures, which is the case for any manufacturing company that relies on container transport, but the board here are competent and have a decent track record. In the medium-term I am positive that Luceco will continue to do well with their exposure to both the trade and DIY segments. That said my exposure to Luceco was reasonably sizeable and so I took the decision to halve my position. By doing this I retain upside exposure, which I want, while protecting some of the gains that I've made with this investment. This seems a more attractive proposition than either selling out entirely or strapping in for what could be a turbulent ride.
These are excellent H1 results with remarkable growth seen in all divisions. Overall revenues surged 90% to £34m with reported PBT up 225% to £15m with this equating to a margin of 45%. Incredible numbers but it's worth not getting too excited as the margin benefitted from short-term lower travel, hiring and entertainment expenses. Still the basic EPS of 27.6p is more than 58% of the current 47.1p forecast and traditionally AFX does better in H2 simply because it's growing so quickly. I can see no change on this front given that the Group's trading has continued to be strong, driven by a healthy demand for services from existing and new clients. In other words I fully expect the board to upgrade expectations when they next report in October. A driver behind this performance is the Alternative Banking division which expands the product offering beyond the core FX space. From a low base this has grown quickly to contribute £9.5m of sales (up from £1.4m) and continues to gain traction with customers. I remain impressed by the management team, led by Morgan Tillbrook (CEO), and their focus on a corporate culture that decentralises authority and gives staff the support that they need to work hard. Despite some large share sales last year (at much lower prices!) the CEO still holds over 16% of the group and is clearly aligned with other shareholders. I see scope for plenty more growth in the coming years. (Results)
A decent trading update with FY revenue to be ahead of current consensus forecasts and adjusted profit to be in line with consensus forecasts. This suggests that margins have weakened slightly which is probably a result of heavy recruitment given that the headcount is up 19% to 2,409 in just the last five months. That is a remarkable step-change which suggests to me that management are responding to strong growth in Digital Services while Workday Practice continues to secure new contracts both nationally and internationally. It's really no surprise that the share price has been very strong over the last year with this backdrop and I have a feeling that the single-digit growth forecasts will be materially beaten. From this perspective the high forward P/E is perhaps a mirage that reflects caution when it comes to forecasting. (Update)
It's no great surprise that these interim results aren't fantastic, given how disrupted air travel remains, and yet there's a lot to like. Total revenues are down a few percent and yet the business generated an underlying PBT of £10.9m compared to a swingeing loss of £48.7m last year. This tells me that the board have continued to crack down on costs and favour higher-margin business. Even better this is an improvement on the £8.2m delivered in 2019 where sales were around 50% higher. Now substantial government support of £64.7m was received in the half-year, largely against labour and other costs, so it's too early to break out the champagne. Still this support is acting exactly as intended in allowing Menzies, along with other firms, to survive and resize. Looking forward the board expect rising revenues to offset the reduction in this support with a gradual improvement in margins. As it'll take time for passenger volumes to recover it's clear that ground service and refuelling revenues will also rebound slowly. This is why cargo services and handling are so important and profitable in this time where global shipping is so disrupted. There remain risks, since the group is exposed to travel restrictions around the globe, but management appear to have a clear view on how to manage these risks and where they want to expand the business. With analyst forecasts continuing to edge upwards, and the share price still a long way from its 750p highs, I'd say that a current price below 300p doesn't reflect the recovery potential. (Results)
It's not surprising that Spectra flies under the radar of most investors. It's a small (£60m market cap), US company operating in a secretive sector with no broker coverage. Hardly a household name. This is a shame because the business has steadily grown over the last 5 years with a ROCE heading towards 20% and excellent free cash generation. Broker forecasts, such as they are, imply around 10% growth in 2021 and yet these interim results suggest that the company is growing much more quickly. In this period revenue rose 23% to $8m while earnings rose 45% with EPS jumping from 4.6c to 6.7c. The FY forecast is for just 11.8c so H2 would meet this by delivering just 5.1c of earnings which seems pessimistic. Reasons for believing this are a new customer win in the high-margin K-cups segment, a new TruBrand customer and reaching a key milestone with their key central bank development contract. In reading through the results narrative I'm impressed by the breadth of technical expertise shown by the company which speaks to its academic heritage; it's this marriage of technical innovation with short/long term financial prospects that makes Spectra so appealing. At the same time the balance sheet is rock solid with $12m in cash; more than double the sum of all current and non-current liabilities. In short this is a conservatively operated company which makes sense given that the CEO Nabil Lawandy owns 5% of the shares. A slow burner perhaps but with unexpected upside potential. (Results)
Prior updates meant that these excellent H1 results were fully anticipated but the numbers bear repeating. Revenues rose an impressive 41% to £13.8m with 33% of this growth being organic. Within here Management Service Fees increased 26% while Financial Services revenues jumped 51% and property sales climbed an amazing 78%. As property transaction levels return to more normal levels clearly sales income will fall along with a decline in new mortgage business - although remortgaging remains active due to the very low interest rates on offer. Independently the lettings market remains buoyant and will likely return to providing over 60% of all revenues (which makes the group less exposed to volatility in the property sector). The upshot is that the FY results will be very good but then next year will be up against a tough comparative (hence forecasts showing a single-digit drop in profits). With 24 years of unbroken profit growth behind them it's clear that management want to maintain this trend and I suspect that they'll achieve this goal. More importantly the business has been through a number of property cycles in that time and now the group is more diversified than ever. This arrangement helped Belvoir perform far more profitably during the pandemic than anyone expected and the actions of the management throughout have been consistent with their strategy to grow the business on all fronts. The main risk that I see is one of slowdown with near-term growth being flat. Even though the P/E ratio is moderate at 16-17 it's plausible that some deflation may occur. (Results)
If you performed a simple filter to find the "cheapest" shares in the market I suspect that Sylvania would be near the top of the list with a P/E of 3-4. That's nice but it's not the whole story since a low P/E rating usually means that investors don't believe that earnings are sustainable. With Sylvania there is some merit to that argument as they cannot control their destiny in several key ways. The first, and largest, problem is that PGM (platinum-group metal) prices are very volatile as supply/demand waxes and wanes. For these results the average PGM basket price was up 83% to $3,690/ounce with rhodium being a huge factor in the increase. Lately the rhodium price has retraced and Sylvania isn't as profitable. At the same time the company uses waste dumps for processing and relies on other people to mine chrome ore and deliver fresh waste material. This didn't happen during the pandemic and so feed grades reduced (lifting costs). Finally these dumps have a finite life and they are all in South Africa. That's the bad news. The good news is that management are fully aware of these issues and, where possible, are working hard to mitigate them. This means using some of their $100m cash pile (and high cash-flow) to upgrade their processing operations, develop new projects and research the potential in reprocessing low-grade ore. So far the operational management have done a great job on these fronts and see themselves delivering at least 70,000 PGM ounces again this year with the potential for future growth. If you believe that metal prices will remain strong, as the automotive sector recovers, then Sylvania really are dirt cheap and offer high windfall dividends along with capital growth. (Results)
This has been a very steady performer for a number of years with earnings growth outstripping sales as the quality of these earnings has improved. So it was a bit of a surprise to see the share price drop by just over 10% on the day of the results. What could have spooked the horses? On the face of it the numbers look good with revenue up 23% and adjusted EPS up 30% to 30.6p. These numbers are almost exactly half of the FY forecast and H2 is generally as good as or better than H1. The outlook is also positive with sales activity back to normal while FY revenue is expected to be in the forecast range (£446.8m-£460.0m) with adjusted EPS being in the upper half of expectations (57.6p-63.1p). This suggests EPS of ~61.7p which is slightly less than the consensus of 62.1p just prior to the results. OK so the combination of a high P/E rating with a slight drop in analyst expectation seems to have done the damage. Fine. I've learnt not to sell quality companies when there's a bump in the road - especially when the bump is hard to see. Both the UK and Europe are growing with strong recurring revenue and acquisitions providing a boost. Sure I prefer organic growth but the board have remained consistent and focused with their purchases as they seek to replicate their success in Europe. Along with this geographic expansion the company is building out its product range to cover Micro, SME and Enterprise clients more effectively. The key insight is that simplicity is key for small businesses while larger ones need complexity to cover their product integration needs. With the long-term tailwind of migration to UCaaS products continuing I'm happy with where Gamma is right now. (Results)
Investors love to argue whether technical or fundamental analysis is best while I favour a combination of both. I do wonder what chartists make of Luceco though with the price rising 25% in a week at the end of August (on no news) before immediately turning around and falling 25% both before and after excellent interim results. Should I have sold at the top? Should I buy more now? Who knows. What is clear is that a 50% rise in sales has led to a doubling of profits as margins have materially improved at the operating level (from 12.3% to 17.6%). Management ascribe this to good operating leverage from sales growth which compensates for the many challenges facing Luceco. Chief amongst these are significant cost inflation from raw materials and supply chain disruption with these expected to intensify before they abate (compressing the gross margin). It's probably this factor that has spooked investors and yet the board have handled such pressures before and the company is benefitting from its vertically integrated model. Their narrative on this front is admirably clear and spells out where the costs are coming from and how they plan to pass on these costs with some delay: the upshot is they'll hit the upgraded forecast of £39m in adjusted operating profit but additional upside (i.e. an earnings beat) may not happen in H2. That's a touch disappointing, and the share price may struggle in the short term, but Luceco are coming out of the pandemic stronger than when they entered it. A clearer picture of progress will be available in the October Q3 update and may provide a buying opportunity. For now I'll watch the price to see if an unmissable opportunity arises. (Results)
These are some cracking interim results that fully back up the confidence of management (as highlighted in their recent update pointing out how analysts were behind the curve with their forecasts). Total revenue improved just under 30% leading to earnings jumping almost 60% to 73.1p. The only adjustment applied is to reverse amortisation of acquired intangibles, which is quite acceptable, meaning that this is a "clean" earnings figure. As management have highlighted even a flat performance in H2 (which last year was 79.4p) would deliver 152.5p of earnings which is ahead of the analyst consensus. Across the group most regions displayed strong growth, and margin improvement, with North America being particularly strong due to acquired and organic growth. In contrast France struggled with an 8.5% drop in revenues pushing the segment from profit into loss. That's a bit disappointing but it's worth noting that the H1 PBT of £119m is greater than any FY profit made prior to 2019 and so would be the 3rd largest annual profit ever for Computacenter. Just let that sink in for a moment as it's a remarkable achievement. With June 2021 also being the most profitable month ever it's fair to say that the growth momentum persists. Still, as with other companies, product shortages persist with this resulting in some customers delaying orders to H2 and others bringing them forward into H1. Management don't say whether these effects balance out but they hope that things will ease by the end of the year which will release the working capital that has been used to build inventory. Until then this will remain the key issue for Computacenter with delayed delivery times holding back the timing of sales. The board have managed this situation very well so far and really you have to trust that they will remain focused on this issue. I believe that they will. (Results)
Last year was absolutely knockout for Gear4music and the board have consistently guided that this year cannot possibly match that pandemic boost. However Q1 was stronger than anticipated with growth returning in the UK over the summer months. This is excellent news. European sales are behind last year due to post-Brexit challenges that make Gear4music relatively less competitive. However distribution centres in Ireland and Spain will come on-line during H2 which should deal with these issues and lead to further growth. At the moment trading is in-line with expectations but clearly the company is doing well and on the hunt for sensible acquisitions - such as the purchase of AV Online with its exposure to the audio-visual market. This doesn't look too expensive and it adds another niche to the business offering. I like the way that things are going here. (Update)
These results were well telegraphed in the business update a few weeks ago so I don't intend to cover them in depth again. Suffice to say that Burford continues to offer the potential for outstanding returns in the future; the problem is reaching that future glory. Right now this half-year saw record investment with new commitments up 334% to $503m and deployments up 229% to $398m. This takes the portfolio to a remarkable $4.8bn in size which is materially larger than the market cap of $3.2bn. The fly in the ointment is that realised profits were not much greater than zero depending on the adjustments that you allow. I understand that the pandemic has very much reduced the flow of cases reaching completion, and that these cases are merely delayed rather than lost, but it would nice to be positively surprised by Burford for once. Quite possibly that day is approaching but with sentiment so negative I suspect that we'll have plenty of time to take advantage when it happens. (Results)
Since the full-year results emerged in April, with a positive outlook, there has been no further statement on trading. Instead we've seen licenses being granted in Pennsylvania and Michigan, an agreement signed with International Game Technology and a £100,000 share purchase from a non-executive director. This all suggests that things are going well and indeed these results are excellent with licensing revenue up 73% and adjusted EBITDA more than doubling. The latter is really a fake metric - more usefully the half-year has swung from a £0.7m loss to a £0.8m profit with cash more than tripling. This move into profit is the investment case for Gaming Realms. It has a fixed operating cost base so any additional revenue falls to the bottom line. This is why current FY22 forecasts have profits doubling, and then rising another 50% in FY23, on a 30% rise in revenues as more licenses are sold in more US states. For now the board expect FY21 trading to be in-line with expectations as customer demand remains high and new Slingo games continue to be developed. An additional angle is that Ontario is looking to regulate iGaming and this market could be bigger then any regulated US state so far; although this is a longer-term prospect. The eagle-eyed among you will notice that £1.6m of development costs have been capitalised in the period, which is material compared to the reported profit, with £1.1m of these being amortised. However the net book value of these costs is just £4.7m suggesting that they are being amortised over a 4-year period which doesn't seem unreasonable for the games that they are creating. On the whole then things are looking good for H2. (Results)
This developer/distributor of sports, leisure and mobility equipment had a great pandemic with profits rising a mighty 58%. Management sound confident that they can build on this success but plenty of other good companies have found it hard to repeat the gains of 2020. Fortunately Tandem Group is chugging along with sales up 14% and profits increasing a tasty 35% to 31.2p. This is less than the 40-odd pence made in the last H2 but Tandem's results are always biased to the second-half because this includes the Christmas period. So the numbers look good despite increased supplier and freight costs that could only partially be passed on to customers. Looking forward demand remains high with a current sales order book of ~£30m (compared to £12m in 2020) with some of this increase perhaps down to supply/shipping issues. Bikes and bike components remain hard to source with this segment alone generating over £20m of the order book. Other reporting segments such as Toys and Home & Garden are also strong with slightly less acute supply chain pressures while eMobility is growing like crazy as consumers go all-electric. The other thing that caught my eye is that the company spent £2.8m buying land adjacent to their existing site in April, which makes perfect sense, and that they are progressing towards the construction phase. Unfortunately the build cost has edged up to around £4m (from £3.5m) because of materials inflation and difficulty with sourcing. This won't break the bank but it does highlight where inflation is having an impact. Still trading looks strong for the second-half with profits anticipated to rise 20% year-on-year. (Results)
Another company that had a good 2020 was Team17 with their computer games in high demand. Sales and profits both jumped by about a third making for a tough comparison this year. Still the analyst consensus is for a moderate rise in earnings from 16.8p up to 18.6-19.1p. These H1 results back up this optimism with a small rise in sales translating into a small rise in profits with high operating cash conversion. In some ways this "steady as she goes" outcome makes sense as the group now has over 500 digital revenue lines with lifecycle management extending to new platforms and adding new content on a continual basis. This avoids the boom-and-bust cycle seen by other games developers at the cost of smoothing revenue growth. Exactly the same approach will apply in H2 with the acquisition of StoryToys providing access to the edutainment vertical. I don't expect Team17 to shoot the lights out anytime soon but the board have managed the post-pandemic slowdown adeptly and continue to provide a safe pair of hands for our company. What they do say is that sales should be second-half weighted, due to the sales mix and addition of StoryToys, which feels both reasonable and promising. The backdrop for this is a video games market set to deliver flat revenues, compared to an exceptional 2020, with growth returning in future years. This, along with shortages of high-end hardware, may have less impact on Team17 due to their avoidance of AAA releases. On this basis I'm happy to hold Team17 for the foreseeable future. (Results)
After a near-death experience over the past few years it's pleasing to see Staffline firmly on the road to recovery. It's not out of the woods yet but the substantial capital raise (and debt refinancing) in June has placed the group on a sound financial footing. This was key for two reasons. The first, obvious one, is that the group couldn't pay back the deferred VAT owed to HMRC and would have gone insolvent. The second, more subtle one, is that customers choose partners who aren't about to go bust and now Staffline is in that happy position. This means that the company can take advantage of the current buoyant recruitment market as the economy unlocks, in the UK and Ireland. More specifically Staffline UK handles blue-collar temporary roles in agriculture, supermarkets, driving, logistics and more with clients relying on Staffline to get these positions filled in a competitive market. At the same time PeoplePlus helps people to retrain and prepare themselves for working which is currently a hot topic with the Government as furlough comes to an end. There's a certain symmetry between these two parts of the business. In Ireland, which is emerging from a harder lockdown, the roles are more white-collar and permanent but still candidate demand remains high. In aggregate all three divisions are doing well and the group as a whole has returned to profit breakeven on sales that are marginally higher than in 2020. The key drivers here are tight cost control combined with higher-margin contracts and exposure to resilient growth sectors. For now Staffline is trading in-line with recently increased forecasts but I think that business momentum will lead to further upgrades. (Results)
Central Asia Metals
The investment case for Central Asia Metals rests upon it being a stable producer of copper, zinc and lead while these base metals remain in demand. This fact means that these metal prices should remain high (until sufficient supply comes on-line to swamp the market) with potential inflation an additional tailwind. An extra benefit is that elevated prices are generating a high-level of cash-flow which is allowing the company to pay down its debt rapidly and supports a high dividend payout. The H1 results illustrate these effects neatly with a declared dividend of 8p being equal to 40% of the FCF and a 3.5% yield at the current share price. At the same time $20m of debt was repaid with another $10m repaid early after the period end. This may well have left the company with no net debt at all which bodes well for shareholder returns. One concern that I did have prior to the results was that output of all three metals might not meet the full-year targets with that Sasa mine having some lower grade issues. However the board are guiding for Kounrad (copper) production at the upper end of guidance and for Sasa (lead and zinc) to be at the lower end. Looking forward the board are keen to locate another producing resource and reviewed 18 opportunities during the period with one site visit. None of these have been taken further but this is the route by which Central Asia Metals will materially increase production. For now the two facilities that they own are operating effectively with 70% of their production unhedged (the hedged 30% is in place to cover expansionary capex at Sasa). (Results)
Apparently trading for the first quarter has been in line with the Board's expectations. Whatever those might be. Sales are growing, which is significant given the challenging comparative, but so are freight costs. Still the company must be able to pack a lot of plastic into each shipping container so the impact can't be too bad on a per-unit basis. (Update)
These results went down like a bucket of warm sick with the share price plummeting 20% to long-term support at 210p. The reason appears to be a "perfect storm" of events with slower growth compared to 2020, higher operational costs, higher capital investment and increased working capital demands. All of these have conspired to knock back margins reversing 20% sales growth to a 20% drop in profits at the bottom line. At the same time cash conversion has been weak and net cash is down to £98m. With just 3.8p of EPS delivered, against a FY forecast of 9.8p, the group needs a much higher second-half weighting than has ever been seen before to make up the lost ground. This is a big ask and a profit warning is plausible in H2 as costs remain stubbornly elevated. The problem is that higher freight and labour costs will continue to impact in H2, and into the following year, before falling back as shipping and air travel recovers. These costs are hard to pass on if you want to remain competitive. At the same time delivery times have stretched out, reducing demand outside of the UK, although this effect is reducing more quickly. It's not surprising that Boohoo are going to open a distribution centre in the US (finally!) with longer term plans for a centre in Europe. The latter is less important though as the EU market is nowhere near fully developed with France and Ireland being the key countries. Still demand has recovered strongly in August/September and the board are confident regarding H2 sales (if not profits perhaps). However if you watch the results presentation it's clear that the board remain ambitious with huge investments being made into the new brands, improving warehouse efficiency and building a single tech stack for the entire group. In addition Debenhams is getting a brand new website which is not even 50% filled out yet but should be fully operational before peak buying season. As a result their addressable market is now 16-50+, as opposed to 16-24 2 years ago, which makes Boohoo a much more complete retailer. So the longer term proposition remains compelling but expect short term pain as Boohoo digests its many acquisitions and deals with cost headwinds. Fortunately there is a very capable executive team in place although I have to say that Mahmud Kahmani looked disengaged during the results presentation with him sitting there on his phone and not even listening to analyst questions. I would not be surprised if he stepped back from his role in the near future. He can be proud of the business that he has created though and I fully expect Boohoo to continue being a British success story. (Results)
Disclaimer: the author holds, or used to hold, all of the shares discussed her