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#1 SoleTrader

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Posted 29 March 2018 - 10:45 AM

New auditors again Doktor? Damn, your creative accounting must really be confusing to the local auditor community. 

 

PS Is there any reason why your FD is not a CA?


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#2 SoleTrader

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 02:25 PM

Smoke and mirrors - an article my broker sent me this morning. 

 

 

The calamitous collapse in the market capitalisation of a share as popular as the (once) mighty Steinhoff International does inevitably sharpen investors’ senses in detecting warning signs of pending value erosion. 

In this light, the recently released interim results of Namibian-based investment company Trustco — like Steinhoff, a widely diversified counter — make for an intriguing scan. This is especially so because Trustco’s shares have defied gravity and more than doubled in price over the past 12 months.

Unaudited interim numbers to end-September show earnings dropped by two-thirds to just 7c/share but did nothing to shake sentiment — though it must be said that Trustco shares are tightly held, with scant interest from mainstay institutional investors.

Straight off, in the half-year to end-September Trustco reported much-reduced profit before tax of R28m (previously R150m).

Profit after tax, though, came in at R53m (R168m last year), bolstered by a tax credit of R25m. The tax credit is listed under Trustco’s investment segment, which shows that neither the insurance nor the banking segments — which are both reporting profits — paid tax.

The situation was the same in the 2016 interim period (with another R16m tax credit listed under investments). For the full financial year to end-March 2017 Trustco reported a tax bill of just R51.5m, despite posting net profit after tax of almost R530m. Trustco’s effective cash tax rate over the longer term is startlingly low — literally a sliver of reported headline earnings. One should be able to safely presume a listed company would not be underpaying its taxes, and assume that the assessed tax loss of R50m from financial 2007 can’t really be a factor any more.

So, then, is it possible to deduce that Trustco is not generating "real" profits — that is to say cash profits?

The cash flow statement shows a net cash outflow from operations of R108m. Finance costs on the R1.7bn debt alone was R121m.

While Trustco’s operating companies have taken strain due to tougher economic conditions, it seems that previous profits were mostly "generated" by large fair value gains in the company’s property portfolio. In financial 2017 the property segment claimed a profit after tax of R440m compared with a group profit of R530m. In the previous three financial years the property segment profits accounted for more than three-quarters of group profit.

With the Namibian property market in a funk it would have been difficult for Trustco to record more fair value gains (as well as bumper sales transactions) through the income statement on its key Elisenheim and Lafrenz real estate developments.

The interim numbers show the investment properties to be worth R1.04bn — not much higher than the R1.01bn reflected in the corresponding interim period in 2016.

It is at this critical juncture that Trustco is weighing up rotating auditors, pointing out that BDO has crunched the numbers for more than 10 years. While the appointment of a new auditor will provide more intrigue, there are more immediate issues that shareholders might pay close attention to in the months ahead.

At the end of the interim period Trustco held just R21m cash on hand, which hardly provides directors with the ammunition to "continue to exercise its mandate to aggressively repurchase its shares".

It is also not the kind of war chest needed when looking to expand aggressively into diamond mining — after striking a staggering R3.6bn scrip-funded deal to acquire assets from Trustco’s CEO and major shareholder, Quinton van Rooyen. The mining assets acquired from Van Rooyen have not exactly kicked in with any vigour. The interim results disclosed that diamond mining at the Northern Namibia Development Company as well as diamond polishing operations at Morse Investments had been suspended pending the granting of a long-awaited mining licence.

The low cash levels might have worried shareholders a lot more if US-based investment company Riskowitz Value Fund (RVF) had not recently pumped in R250m via a convertible loan agreement. That loan has since been converted into new equity at 425c/share, markedly increasing RVF’s already large exposure to Trustco.

Then, last month, RVF pumped more money into Trustco, proposing to buy 20% of Trustco insurance subsidiary Legal Shield for R1.2bn — a deal that sparked a huge rally in Trustco’s share price on suspiciously low trading volumes.


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#3 DividendTycoon

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Posted 08 December 2017 - 06:56 PM

Yes looks like they 'rotating' auditors.. No doubt that the price is being held up by somebody, have to ask why?

 

Hey buddy. Yes, the reported numbers are going from bad to worse. Burning cash like no tomorrow. And he seems to be dependant on Riskowitz funding his cashflow requirements. Did I see that his auditors also resigned? Also interesting the mention of aggressively buying own stock, but I have never seen a SENS announcing any buybacks?

 
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#4 SoleTrader

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Posted 07 December 2017 - 07:20 PM

I would now agree with you that something a bit funny at Trustco. I have cashed out completely, too many funny deals and funny dealings going on.

Hey buddy. Yes, the reported numbers are going from bad to worse. Burning cash like no tomorrow. And he seems to be dependant on Riskowitz funding his cashflow requirements. Did I see that his auditors also resigned? Also interesting the mention of aggressively buying own stock, but I have never seen a SENS announcing any buybacks?
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#5 DividendTycoon

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Posted 07 December 2017 - 09:18 AM

Dokter, your ponzi scheme is next. 

I would now agree with you that something a bit funny at Trustco. I have cashed out completely, too many funny deals and funny dealings going on.


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#6 SoleTrader

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 02:39 PM

Dokter, your ponzi scheme is next. 


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#7 PlatinumWealth.co.za

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Posted 11 November 2017 - 11:13 PM

This was actually one of the first shares I bought, I'm still a very happy shareholder.

Didn't they also bought up a bunch of prime land around Namibia's major business districts only 3 years ago?

We actually need a Trusco thread on platinumwealth.co.za

Edited by PlatinumWealth.co.za, 11 November 2017 - 11:14 PM.

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JSE and ZARX Finance and Investment Forum -> https://platinumwealth.co.za/

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#8 SoleTrader

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Posted 10 November 2017 - 06:40 PM

So you discovered some daaimonds. I just wonder what you don't declare of your finds? You clown you! PS, what happened to the Namibian daaimond license?
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#9 SoleTrader

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Posted 08 November 2017 - 04:17 PM

Whoever the clown(s) was propping up TTO seems to have run out of cash or interest in continuing the little game. Doktor, watse nonsense did you sell Riskowitz to do what he did?
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#10 DividendTycoon

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Posted 03 July 2017 - 12:07 PM

I guess someone is having cashflow problems?! And the skuld is going thru the roof. Where is the promised dividend from the first half, hmm Doktor? More interesting is the R21m payment for security to your Next investments. Not feeling safe? Lets see if the stupid mystery buyer keeps on propping up the share, good luck to him.

We come from different perspectives on TTO as it has been very kind to me, but the results do not look bad to me. 70c earnings, yes debt up but so are loans made to students/property buyers. I think lack of dividend is perhaps final proof a delisting not far off, still think 480c likely. Anyway I am effectively out,  down to my last 10%, will sell another 4% if can get 450c, then wait till next year for CGT reasons to dispose rest or be delisted. 

ps. Wrong to say it a mystery buyer, it is the Riskowitz funds.

pps. Security payment not the armed type but for QVR guaranteeing something financial, think it was related to the mine, but not really bothered to look it up anymore.


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#11 SoleTrader

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 06:36 PM

I guess someone is having cashflow problems?! And the skuld is going thru the roof. Where is the promised dividend from the first half, hmm Doktor? More interesting is the R21m payment for security to your Next investments. Not feeling safe? Lets see if the stupid mystery buyer keeps on propping up the share, good luck to him.
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#12 SoleTrader

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Posted 08 June 2017 - 06:28 PM

Doktor, I have got to take my hat off to you. I don't know how you managed to conn whoever you did to manipulate your share, but well done. Millions being bought, soon you and the mystery buyer can delist this rubbish and we never have to hear from you again. Good.
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#13 DividendTycoon

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Posted 25 April 2017 - 02:49 PM

Trustco is starting to remind me of Tigon (remember that one!) where one Jack Milne was propping up the share in a unit trust controlled by the directors of Tigon.  That ended in groot trane, with Milne becoming a guest of the State for a few years, living on dry bread and water.  Once again I state that whoever is buying the stock, cannot sell one share without collapsing the price.

 

Caveat Emptor.  

I would agree and disagree with you. 

 

You right that there is only one buyer. That is risky. I have sold down to my last third, but what happens now is uncertain. My view remains that they are buying because they want more of TTO, and perhaps a corporate action coming. However, nothing certain, no buyer around for a few days, so indeed Caveat Emptor. 

 

I would disagree that it a Tigon though. There are assets, millions and millions of sqm of land in Windhoek for example, a secure student loan book of a billion etc. 

Not sure what Tigon had, but while the price could drop if no buyers, do not see it going to zero.


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#14 SoleTrader

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Posted 25 April 2017 - 11:22 AM

Trustco is starting to remind me of Tigon (remember that one!) where one Jack Milne was propping up the share in a unit trust controlled by the directors of Tigon.  That ended in groot trane, with Milne becoming a guest of the State for a few years, living on dry bread and water.  Once again I state that whoever is buying the stock, cannot sell one share without collapsing the price.

 

Caveat Emptor.  


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#15 DividendTycoon

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 05:14 PM

I see nobody wants your shares Doktor? Clearly investors havent got the exceptional vision that you have. Best you delist buddy, because nobody gonna touch them Distrustco shares.

somebody paid me R4 for some today, but need to decide what to do with the bulk of my holding as they seem to be buying up some co's like FGL and just minority stakes in co's like TAS. Very strange situation. Still, nice to get cash at these prices when other stocks looking cheaper than a few weeks ago.


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#16 SoleTrader

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 01:03 PM

I see nobody wants your shares Doktor? Clearly investors havent got the exceptional vision that you have. Best you delist buddy, because nobody gonna touch them Distrustco shares.
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#17 SoleTrader

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Posted 06 April 2017 - 12:23 PM

Another Financial Director gone, hey Doktor! Don't these sheeple (another word you likes to use!!!!) want to sign off your dubious accounting practices? Next step is suspension of the share, mark my words.
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#18 SoleTrader

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Posted 31 March 2017 - 10:33 AM

Doktor, I hope you had the savvy to convert those offshore loans that you were making and bragging about into ZAR or N$.  If you didnt, or didnt hedge out the currency risk, I am afraid that your interest bill is going to start rocketing.  

 

Now I wonder how are you going to pay a dividend without putting your non-cash generating business at risk? And I also wonder if the clowns (a word you like to use on Twitter!!!!) propping up your share are thinking to themselves "What the heck have we done buying millions of shares at 400c if they are only worth 280c?"


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#19 SoleTrader

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Posted 29 March 2017 - 11:43 AM

If propping up the share price was needed I would think Trustco or QVR would be doing this for credibility perhaps, as opposed to a minority shareholder who is not involved in the running of the business and is investing in expectation of a good return. Seems very self defeating to engage in something which could only have a bad ending if this what they are doing. 

 

Only time will tell I guess. I cant help but feel that either you are right (always a possibility despite what I wrote above), or this minority shareholder who is buying so much knows something we do not know.(for now I am going with this). 

I would guess that you are right about the minority knowing more than us. Which makes them insider traders and reinforces my view that Doktor isnt fit to be the CEO of a listed JSE company. 


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#20 DividendTycoon

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 04:07 PM

@DividendTycoon. As a former shareholder I am purely speculating on the potential reasons why the stock is being propped up. All I know is that whoever the fool is supporting the price, he or she cannot sell a single share at current prices. Maybe they have the exceptional vision that Doktor alluded to in seeing the future, clearly I didn't. And I am glad I don't, because having read up on Doktor, he is clearly not a character I would shake hands with and not check if my wallet was still in my pocket afterwards. Peace to all, my darling wife has prepared a lovely meal for dinner

If propping up the share price was needed I would think Trustco or QVR would be doing this for credibility perhaps, as opposed to a minority shareholder who is not involved in the running of the business and is investing in expectation of a good return. Seems very self defeating to engage in something which could only have a bad ending if this what they are doing. 

 

Only time will tell I guess. I cant help but feel that either you are right (always a possibility despite what I wrote above), or this minority shareholder who is buying so much knows something we do not know.(for now I am going with this). 


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