ASX 200 sinks, Xero reveals acquisition, ARB driven higher

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX:XJO) dropped by 0.8% today. Both Xero Limited (ASX:XRO) and ARB Corporation Limited (ASX:ARB) announced deals.
The post ASX 200 sinks, Xero reveals acquisition, ARB driven higher appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

ASX 200

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) fell by 0.8% today to 6,761 points.

There was another selloff in international markets, particularly with US tech shares. This caused a knock-on effect to the ASX share market.

Here are some of the main pieces of news:

Xero Limited (ASX: XRO)

The Xero share price ended the day lower by 2.6% despite announcing an acquisition that management were pleased with.

The ASX 200 tech company announced that it’s buying Planday for an upfront cost of €155.7 million, with 45% being paid in Xero shares and the rest in cash. Another €27.8 million could be paid based on product development and revenue milestones.

What does Planday do? It’s a leading workforce management platform with more than 350,000 employees across Europe and the UK that simplifies employee scheduling, allowing businesses to forecast and manage their labour costs. Its systems already integrate with Xero, other accounting solutions and third-party workforce-related apps, to deliver a real-time view of staffing needs and payroll costs, alongside key business performance metrics.

Xero said that when Planday’s technology is combined with an accounting solution, like Xero, it can provide insights to a business or its advisor that helps them to change employee levels to match the trading conditions and be in charge of labour costs.

The CEO of Xero, Steve Vamos, said:

The acquisition of Planday aligns with our purpose to make life better for people in small businesses and their advisors. Planday’s workforce management platform helps small businesses to respond to the rapidly changing nature of work. Planday also addresses the growing need for flexibility and rising and compliance demands within the workplace.

ARB Corporation Limited (ASX: ARB)

The ARB share price ended higher by around 3% after also announcing an acquisition.

ARB revealed it is purchasing Auto Styling Truckman Group Limited.

Truckman is the leading manufacturer and distributor of utility accessories in the UK, principally focused on rear of vehicle products as canopies, bed liners and general utility vehicle products.

The ASX 200 share said that the business is the leading brand leader in the UK. Management said that this business meets its aim of expanding international distribution and aligns with its evolving product strategy.

In a positive sign for employees, ARB said it would retain all existing staff and management. The business will continue to operate in the usual way with the added support of ARB’s expertise and resources. The chair and managing director, Michael Wheeler and Richard Langman, will continue to manage the business.

The maximum net cash purchase price is £21.9 million, including £10 million at completion, deferred payments of £4 million and a further amount of up to £7.9 million subject to performance hurdles over the next three years.

This purchase is being funded from its existing cash. It’s expected to operate profitably from the start of ARB’s ownership, effective 2 March 2021.

Myer Holdings Ltd (ASX: MYR)

The Myer share price fell by 11% today after reporting its FY21 half-year result.

Myer reported that its total sales dropped by 13.1% to $1.4 billion, however online sales climbed by 71% to $287.6 million.

The ASX retail share revealed that its operating gross profit dropped 14.3% to $539.8 million, whilst the cost of doing business decreased by 20.9% to $325.2 million.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) dropped 1.7% to $214.6 million and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) went up 2.7% to $109 million.

Net profit after tax (NPAT) grew by 8.4%, which excludes implementation costs and individually significant items, to $42.9 million. Statutory net profit after tax grew 76.3% to $43 million.

Myer decided not to pay a dividend, though its net cash improved by $98.2 million to $201.1 million.

Tech shares sold off

There were a number of ASX tech shares that dropped today.

The Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT) share price fell 2%, the Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P) share price fell 4.4%, the WiseTech Global Ltd (ASX: WTC) share price dropped 2.2% and the Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) share price fell 3.1%.

Some of the smaller tech businesses also dropped, including the Ltd (ASX: KGN) share price which dropped 1% and the Temple & Webster Group Ltd (ASX: TPW) share price which fell 2.6%.

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Tristan Harrison has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Appen Ltd, ltd, and ZIPCOLTD FPO. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO, WiseTech Global, and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended ARB Limited and ltd. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

The post ASX 200 sinks, Xero reveals acquisition, ARB driven higher appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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