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Earl of Portsmouth cashes in at Grainger

The Earl of Portsmouth has sold more than £9 million worth of shares in property company Grainger Trust as he prepares to step down from his non-executive role.

 

The Earl of Portsmouth has sold more than £9 million worth of shares in property company Grainger Trust as he prepares to step down from his non-executive role.

Portsmouth sold 1.11 million shares yesterday at 820p per share, banking a handsome £9.11 million in the process. There is bound to be more to come though as he still holds a shade over 3 million shares, equivalent to 12.5% of the £206 million company (GRI).

Late last month Portsmouth and fellow non-executive Manny Davidson announced they were both to retire from the board at the AGM in early March.

Portsmouth sold his shares below the current market value of 840p, unchanged today, which also just happens to be the lowest price of the year so far. Last year Grainger investors enjoyed a surge when the share price rose from 650p in mid-March to 897.5p by early July. This momentum waned and it slipped backwards - its highest price so far this year is 875p.

Meanwhile the shrewd five-strong management team at Aberforth Partners have stakes in Grainger through two of their funds. The (Aberforth UK Small Companies) unit trust added 12,000 shares in December to boost its holding to 280,000 shares while the Aberforth Smaller Companies investment trust holds 474,000 shares which it has not touched for over a year.

In December Grainger reported strong results for the year to September, with pre-tax profits before exceptionals up 38% to £22.2 million.

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