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Woodford sold troubled Yell publisher Hibu ahead of 90% profit slump
by Sarah Miloudi on Nov 14, 2012 at 10:56
Hibu, formerly Yell Group, posted a bleak six month update telling its shareholders that over the half-year to 30 September its pre-tax profit had lost £80 million and dropped to £150 million.
Moreover, just a day earlier, Hibu executives decided to push back the deadline on a debt deal with its creditors.
While it is no secret that Hibu has had a tough year, some of its biggest shareholders have stayed tight-lipped as its shares lost 93% of their value.
Woodford (pictured), head of investments at Invesco Perpetual, today told his Edinburgh Investment Trust investors he had let go of the company and reduced his holdings in BG Group, a gas producer which recently warned of poor production, and Tate & Lyle, the sugar maker.
He had decided to stand by the tobacco sector for the longer term, and told investors it 'represents exactly the sort of quality stocks that can deliver attractive profit and dividend growth through a low growth environment.'
Over the six months to the end of September Edinburgh grew its net asset value (NAV) by 0.9%, taking its debt at par, versus the FTSE All-Share Index which fell 0.1% over the same period.
Woodford reminded investors that he had remained cautious on the outlook for growth for much of the year, and pointed out that the stream of earnings downgrades he previously anticipated had started to come through.
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