ASX 200 up, Baby Bunting drops, Pointsbet rises

The ASX 200 hit a new record again today.
The post ASX 200 up, Baby Bunting drops, Pointsbet rises appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) hit a new record again today. It ended 0.5% higher to 7,629 points.

Here are some of the highlights from the ASX:

Baby Bunting Group Ltd (ASX: BBN)

The Baby Bunting share price dropped 4.5% today after the retailer released its FY21 result to the market.

Baby Bunting reported that total sales increased by 15.6% to $468.4 million. Comparable store sales grew 11.3% and online sales went up 54.2%. Digital sales accounted for 19.4% of total sales.

The business revealed even faster profit growth. Pro forma earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose by 29.2% to $43.5 million and pro forma net profit after tax increased by 34.8% to $26 million. Statutory profit rose by 76% to $17.5 million.

After this profit growth, the company decided to increase the full year dividend by 34.1% to 14.1 cents. This included a final dividend declared of 8.3 cents per share.

The Baby Bunting CEO Matt Spencer said:

While the new financial year has started with some disruptions from ongoing lockdowns, our experience has been that any short-term sales impact is recovered quickly once lockdowns have eased. While FY22 may have more surprises, our operating strength in our category and transformation plans should see us well placed in the period ahead.

The company said that comparable store sales as at 12 August 2021 were down 6.4% in the year to date.

But it expects to open another three new stores in the first half of FY22.

Pointsbet Holdings Ltd (ASX: PBH)

The Pointsbet share price went up over 2% after announcing another expansion in the USA.

It announced that its West Virginia business has received regulatory approval from the West Virginia Lottery Commission and has launched online sports betting operations in West Virginia.

West Virginia marks the seventh operational state for Pointsbet’s sports betting product, after the successful launches in New Jersey, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Colorado and Michigan. It also currently operates in iGaming in New Jersey and Michigan.

The CEO of Pointsbet USA, Johnny Aitken, said:

Launching in West Virginia represents further progress for Pointsbet and presents another tremendous opportunity we are excited to attack.

As always, Pointsbet will provide this passionate, sports-loving community with a fast and reliable online sports betting product across every customer touchpoint. We are thrilled to now introduce West Virginian sports bettors to the competitive advantages Pointsbet possesses in owning our technology end-to-end, such as our speed and ease of use as well as a deep slate of betting options for every NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, WNBA, and PGA TOUR contest.

The company also plans to launch its online casino product in West Virginia by the end of the 2021 calendar year.

Air New Zealand Limited (ASX: AIZ)

The company announced today it was going to defer its capital raising. The Air New Zealand share price rose 1%. 

A few months ago, Air New Zealand announced its intention to complete a capital raising, with components of both debt and equity before 30 September 2021.

The airline pointed out that the government provided its plan to reconnect New Zealanders to the world in relation with COVID-19. This included update vaccination rollout plans, a phased approach to reopening borders and, from the first quarter of the 2022 calendar year, a phased introduction of an individual risk-based approach to border settings that will establish various pathways of entry into the country.

Air New Zealand has received a letter from the Minister of Finance outlining his view that that the current environment is not sufficiently certain and stable to enable the ‘Crown’ to provide a firm pre-commitment to support the planned equity raise at this time.

The airline has decided to defer its planned capital raising until the first available window in the first quarter of the 2022 calendar year.

However, Air New Zealand said the ‘Crown’ did say that it was committed to maintaining a majority shareholding of the company and would take part in the capital raising to maintain its majority shareholding, if the Cabinet were satisfied with the terms of the raising.

The company and the Minister of Finance have agreed that the step up of interest rates will no longer apply with the ‘Crown’ standby facility available through to September 2023.

The post ASX 200 up, Baby Bunting drops, Pointsbet rises appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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More reading

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Here are the 3 most active ASX 200 shares this Friday

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Why ASX 200 gold shares are deep in the red this year

ASX 200 midday update: Telstra 52-week high, PointsBet rises on US update

Motley Fool contributor 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 and has recommended Pointsbet Holdings Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Pointsbet Holdings Ltd. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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