Shares in Findel(LSE: FDL) have fallen by 8% today after it released a rather mixed set of full-year results. On the one hand, Findel reported a loss for the year from continuing operations of £1.6m, with sales increasing by just 0.9% from the previous year. However, on the other hand, Findel continues to make encouraging progress as it seeks to reorganise its business following significant asset sales.
Upbeat long term potential
Notably, Findel has sold Kitbag for £14m during the year and is now solely focused on its two remaining divisions of Express Gifts and Findel Education. The former recorded a fall in operating profit of over 5% during the year, but this was mainly due to the negative impact of foreign exchange. Meanwhile, sales at Findel Education declined by 8.1%, although customer numbers in the key Schools brands stabilised.
With exceptional items excluded, Findel recorded a pretax profit of £24.8m during the year, which shows that it has upbeat long term potential. And with its adjusted earnings forecast to rise by 11% in the current year and by a further 21% next year, investor sentiment towards the company could improve substantially, thereby making Findel an appealing buy for less risk averse investors.
Also falling today are shares in Trakm8(LSE: TRAK), with the vehicle telematics specialist seeing a fall in its share price of 9% despite no news flow having been released by the company. Clearly, this has been a tough year thus far for Trakm8's investors, with its share price having fallen by 40% year-to-date. And with investor sentiment showing little sign of improving in the short run, further share price declines cannot be ruled out.
Looking ahead, however, Trakm8's share price could record a strong recovery since the company is expected to report rising profitability over the next two financial years. In fact, Trakm8's bottom line is forecast to rise by 84% in the current year and by a further 48% in the following financial year.
This has the potential, if delivered, to cause a step-change in investor sentiment and with Trakm8 trading on a price-to-earnings growth (PEG) ratio of just 0.3, it seems to offer a relatively appealing risk/reward ratio for less risk averse investors.
Meanwhile, shares in Game Digital(LSE: GMD) have soared by over 7% today despite no news flow being released by the video games retailer.
Wait for evidence
Clearly, the company is enduring a challenging period, as evidenced by its second Christmas of disappointing sales figures and the reduction or removal of significant levels of insurance cover in its aftermath. And with the outlook for the UK retail sector being challenging, it would be unsurprising if Game Digital's shares resumed their downward trend.
With Game Digital forecast to report a fall in its bottom line of 48% this year, it may be prudent to wait for evidence of improved performance before buying a slice of it. Certainly, positive earnings growth is forecast for the following year, but with a number of other retail stocks offering better financial performance at the present time, there may be superior options elsewhere for long term investors.
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Peter Stephens owns shares of Findel. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.