Getting Investment Leverage in the Markets (FT Press Delivers Elements)

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Show more Opinion link Opinion. Show more Personal Finance link Personal Finance. Find a fund Go. Category performance 1M. Fund movers Gainers. Click or tap rows for actions. Other Allocation. Funds news Are asset managers ready to take responsibility? Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance; unit prices may fall as well as rise. FT has not selected, modified or otherwise exercised control over the content of the videos or white papers prior to their transmission, or their receipt by you.

The videos, white papers and other documents displayed on this page are paid promotional materials provided by the fund company. Underlying adjusted profit for the year - attributable to owners of the parent. Adjusted diluted EPS is calculated using a weighted average number of shares in issue during of Increase in Progressive, operators' jackpots, security deposits. Excluding Snaitech, operating cash conversion from Adjusted EBITDA is in line with the conversion rate after adjusting for jackpots, security deposits and client equity, payable dividend and professional and finance costs on acquisitions.

Adjusting th e above cash fluctuations is essential in order to truly reflect the quality of revenue and cash collection. This is because the timing of cash inflows and outflows for jackpots, security deposits, client equity and payable dividend only impacts the report ed operating cashflow and not EBITDA, while professional expenses and finance costs relating to acquisitions are excluded from adjusted EBITDA but impact operating cashflow. The facility is for a term of 3 years with a one-year extension option. Contingent consideration and redemption liability as of In order to maximise the efficiency of shareholder returns the Board has adopted a new policy to reallocate part of its payout ratio into share repurchases.

Under the revised policy, future returns will be balanced between dividends and share buybacks. It is the Board's intention that the overall level of capital returned to shareholders will continue to be progressive, in line with medium term earnings. For shareholders wishing to receive their dividends in Sterling, the last date for currency elections is 10 May The share repurchase programme will commence tomorrow 22 February , subject to market conditions, and it is intended that ordinary shares will be repurchased on the London Stock Exchange.

The purpose of the share repurchase programme is to reduce the Company's share capital and ordinary shares purchased by Playtech will be cancelled. Goodbody and UBS will make their trading decisions in relation to Playtech's ordinary shares independently of, and uninfluenced by, Playtech. Details of any ordinary shares repurchased will be announced by Playtech via a Regulatory Information Service following any repurchase. Playtech confirms that it currently has no unpublished inside information relevant to the share buyback programme.

Risks relating to both the Gaming division and Financials division. Playtech holds several licences for its activities from regulators. Local regulators have their own specific requirements, which often vary on a country to country basis. In addition, new requirements may be imposed. For example, a requirement to locate significant technical infrastructure within the relevant territory or to establish and maintain real-time data interfaces with the regulator.

Such conditions present operational challenges and may prohibit the ability of licensees to offer the full range of the Group's products. The regulation is mandatory and all organisations that hold or process personal data must comply with these regulations. Given the dynamic nature of tax rules, guidance and tax authority practice, the business is exposed to continuously evolving rules and practices governing the taxation of e-commerce activity in various jurisdictions.

Such taxes may include corporate income tax, withholding taxes and indirect taxes. As such, it is imperative to ensure compliance with all relevant tax regulations and requirements in each jurisdiction that Playtech operates.

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Playtech has made a number of acquisitions in the past. The Group's future success depends in large part on the continued service of a broad leadership team including Executive Directors, senior managers and key personnel. The development and retention of these employees, along with the attraction and integration of new talent, cannot be guaranteed.

System downtime or a security breach, whether through cyber and distributed denial of service DDoS attacks or technology failure, could significantly affect the services offered to our licensees. Loss of revenue, reputational damage or breach of regulatory requirements may occur as a result of a business or location disruptive event. As Playtech plc continues to operate across multiple locations, servicing our clients in many markets across the globe. These operations bring with them significant opportunities for growth, however, as is well understood, globally diverse operations carry risk particularly as markets change.

Regulators, industry, charities and the public at large continue to challenge the gaming and betting sector to make gambling and gaming products safer, fairer and crime free. In addition, licensing requirements are regularly updated to ensure that companies in the sector provide a safe environment for consumers. The fair value of financial assets and financial liabilities could adversely fluctuate due to movements in market prices of foreign exchange rates, commodity prices, equity and index prices.

The requirement to maintain adequate regulatory capital may affect the Group's ability to conduct its business and may reduce profitability. A list of current directors is maintained on Playtech's website, www. Realised fair value changes on equity investments disposed.

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Profit for the year. Earnings per share for profit attributable to the owners of the parent during the year:. The directors believe that the adjusted profit, which includes realised fair value changes recognised in the income statement in the period on equity investments disposed of in the period, represents more closely the consistent trading performance of the business. A full reconciliation between the actual and adjusted results is provided in Note 6.

Reserve for re-measurement of employee termination indemnities. The financial information was approved by the Board and authorised for issue on 20 February Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities see below. Issue of bond loans, net of issue costs and repayment of bridge loans. Impairment of investment in associates and other non-current assets. Acquisition of Seabrize Marketing Limited. Acquisition of Eyecon Limited. Acquisition of ACM Group. Playtech plc the 'Company' is a company domiciled in the Isle of Man.

Playtech and its subsidiaries 'the Group' develop unified software platforms for the online and land based gambling industry, targeting online and land based operators. Playtech's gaming applications - online casino, poker and other P2P games, bingo, mobile, live gaming, land-based kiosk networks, land based terminal and fixed-odds games - are fully inter-compatible and can be freely incorporated as stand-alone applications, accessed and funded by the operators' players through the same user account and managed by the operator by means of a single, powerful management interface.

Since June , through the acquisition of Snaitech, Playtech directly owns and operates the leading sports betting and gaming brand in online and retail in Italy, Snai. The Group's financial trading division, has four primary business models, being:. The directors consider that the Group has adequate resources to continue in operational existence for the foreseeable future and that it is therefore appropriate to adopt the going concern basis in preparing its financial statements.

Despite the net current liability position at the year end and the potential repayment of the convertible bond in November ; the Group's corporate planning processes include completion of a strategic review, preparation of a three-year business plan and a rolling re-forecast of current year business performance and prospects. During the year, additional business plans and financial projections were prepared to specifically consider the acquisition of Snaitech and issuance of a long term debt issuance, and its impact on the Group's future performance and funding requirements.

The Directors continuously assessing the long-term viability of the Playtech group as part of their ongoing monitoring of the company. Refer to going concern, viability, responsibilities and disclosure in the Directors report. The financial information set out in this document does not constitute the Group's statutory accounts for the year ended 31 December or 31 December The Annual Report and financial statements for the year ended 31 December were approved by the Board of Directors on 20 February along with this preliminary announcement.

The auditor's report on the statutory accounts for both the year ended 31 December and 31 December was unqualified. The significant accounting policies followed in the preparation of the financial information, on a consistent basis, are:. New standards, interpretations and amendments effective from 1 January New standards impacting the Group that have been adopted in the annual financial statements for the year ended 31 December , and which have given rise to changes in the Group's accounting policies are:.

Equity investments classified as available for sale financial assets under IAS 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement have been classified as being at Fair Value through Profit and Loss, unless an irrevocable election is made on the equity investment under IFRS 9.

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All fair value gains in respect of those assets are recognised in the statement of comprehensive income and accumulated in retained earnings. Previously, under IAS 39, impairments of such assets were recognised in profit or loss, and gains and losses accumulated in reserves were recycled to profit or loss on disposal. The impairment provision on financial assets measured at amortised cost such as trade and other receivables have been calculated in accordance with IFRS 9's expected credit loss model, which differs from the incurred loss model previously required by IAS The Group has chosen not to restate comparatives on adoption of IFRS 9 and, therefore, both of these changes have been processed at the date of initial application i.

The change to an expected credit losses model as required under IFRS 9 has had an immaterial impact on the group. As allowed by the transitional rules in IFRS 9, prior year financial statements have not been restated and, in any event, no material changes in the numbers recognized were required. The adoption of IFRS 9 has though resulted in presentational changes as described above. On the date of initial application, 1 January , the financial instruments of the group were as follows, with any reclassifications noted:.

IFRS 15 establishes a comprehensive framework for determining whether, how much and when revenue is recognised. Under IFRS 15, revenue is recognised when a customer obtains control of the goods or services. Determining the timing of the transfer of control - at a point in time or over time - requires judgement. The Group has adopted IFRS 15 using the cumulative effect method without practical expedients , with the effect of initially applying this standard recognized at the date of initial application i. Accordingly, the information presented for has not been restated - i.

Additionally, the disclosure requirements in IFRS 15 have not generally been applied to comparative information. Due to the nature of the revenue of the Group and the low number of fixed revenue contracts in existence, the transition to IFRS 15, net of tax, on retained earnings as at 1 January is not material. Hence, the impacts of adopting IFRS 15 on the Group's statement of financial position as at 31 December and its statement of profit or loss and OCI for the year then ended is also not material. IFRS 15 did not have a significant impact on the Group's accounting policies with respect to other revenue streams.

For the description of the principal revenue streams and their respective accounting treatments, refer below. For more detailed information about reportable segments, see Notes 4 and 5. There are a number of standards, amendments to standards, and interpretations which have been issued by the IASB that are effective in future accounting periods that the group has decided not to adopt early. The most significant of these is:. The standard's instructions annul the existing requirement from lessees to classify leases as operating or finance leases.

Instead, for lessees, the new standard presents a unified model for the accounting treatment of all leases according to which the lessee has to recognize a right-of-use asset and a lease liability in its financial statements. IFRS 16 is applicable for annual periods as of January 1, , with the possibility of early adoption.

IFRS 16 includes various alternative transitional provisions, so that companies can choose between the full retrospective application or recognizing a cumulative effect, which means application with the possibility of certain practical expedients as from the mandatory effective date with an adjustment to the balance of retained earnings at that date "the modified approach". The Group plans to adopt IFRS 16 as from January 1, using the modified approach, with an adjustment to the balance of retained earnings as at January 1, Accordingly, application of the standard may result in an adjustment of retained earnings at the date of initial application.

Furthermore, financing expenses will be recognized in respect of the lease liability. Therefore, as from the date of initial application and in subsequent periods, depreciation expenses and financing expenses will be recognized instead of lease expenses relating to assets leased under an operating lease, which were presented as part of the general and administrative expenses item in the income statement. In addition, the nominal discount rates used for measuring the lease liability are in the range of 2. This range is affected by differences in the length of the lease term, differences between the various groups of assets and so forth.

Where the company has control over an investee it is classified as a subsidiary. The company controls an investee if all three of the following elements are present: power over the investee; exposure to variable returns from the investee; and the ability of the investor to use its power to affect those variable returns. Control is reassessed whenever facts and circumstances indicate that there may be a change in any of these elements of control.

The consolidated financial information presents the results of the Company and its subsidiaries the "Group" as if they formed a single entity. Intercompany transactions and balances between Group companies are therefore eliminated in full. The consolidated financial statements incorporate the results of business combinations using the acquisition method. In the balance sheet, the acquiree's identifiable assets, liabilities and contingent liabilities are initially recognised at their fair values at the acquisition date.

The results of acquired operations are included in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income from the date on which control is obtained. They are deconsolidated from the date on which control ceases. The financial information of the gaming division, which includes the Company and some of its subsidiaries is prepared in Euros the functional currency , which is the currency that best reflects the economic substance of the underlying events and circumstances relevant to the gaming division.

Accordingly, transactions and balances have been converted into the presentation currency of Euros as follows:. Exchange gains and losses from the aforementioned conversion are recognised in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income. The financial information of the financial division is prepared in US Dollars the functional currency , which is the currency that best reflects the economic substance of the underlying events and circumstances relevant to the financial division.

The transactions and balances are converted into the presentation currency of Euros as follows:. Exchange gains and losses from the aforementioned conversion are recognised in the foreign exchange reserve. The majority of the Group's revenue is derived from selling services with revenue recognized at a point in time when services have been delivered to the customer.

Nature, timing of satisfaction of performance obligations and significant payment terms. Royalty income relating to licensed technology and the provision of certain services provided via various distribution channels online, mobile or land-based interfaces. Royalty income is based on the underlying gaming revenue earned by our licensees and is recognised in the accounting periods in which the gaming transactions occur.

Royalty income invoices are billed and paid on a monthly basis. Trading income represents gains including commission and losses arising on client trading activity, primarily in contracts for difference on shares, indexes, commodities and foreign exchange. Open client positions are carried at fair market value and gains and losses arising on this valuation are recognised in revenue as well as gains and losses realised on positions that have closed.

Income is recognised over the period of service once the obligations under the contracts have passed. Where amounts are billed and obligations not met, revenue is deferred. Amounts are mostly billed and paid on a monthly basis. Cost Based revenue is the total revenue charged to the licensee based on the actual costs incurred from production and an additional percentage charged on top as a profit. Cost based revenue invoices are recognised in line with the cost and paid on a monthly basis.

Based on the services provided by the Group, excluding certain rebates provided to customers in the financial division, no return, refund and other similar obligations exist. Moreover, no warranties and related obligations exist. Distribution costs represent the direct costs of the function of providing services to customers, costs of the development function, advertising costs and indirect taxes.

The fair value of the equity settled options granted is charged to the consolidated statement of comprehensive income on a straight line basis over the vesting period and the credit is taken to equity, based on the Group's estimate of shares that will eventually vest. Fair value is determined by the Black-Scholes and Binomial valuation model. The share options plan does not have any performance conditions other than continued service.

Where equity settled share options are settled in cash at the group's discretion the debit is taken to equity. The fair value of these awards is based on the market price at the date of the grant, some of the grants have performance conditions. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are recognised where the carrying amount of an asset or liability in the consolidated balance sheet differs from its tax base, except for differences arising on:.

Recognition of deferred tax assets is restricted to those instances where it is probable that taxable profit will be available against which the difference can be utilized. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are offset when the Group has a legally enforceable right to offset current tax assets and liabilities and the deferred tax assets and liabilities relate to taxes levied by the same tax authority on either:. Dividends are recognized when they become legally payable.

In case of interim dividends to equity shareholders, this is when declared by the Directors. In case of final dividend, this is when approved by the shareholders at the AGM. Property, plant and equipment are initially recognized at cost. Carrying amounts are reviewed on each balance sheet date for impairment. Where the carrying amount of an asset is greater than its estimated recoverable amount, it is written down immediately to its recoverable amount.

Depreciation is calculated to write off the cost of fixed assets on a straight line basis over the expected useful lives of the assets concerned. The principal annual rates used for this purpose, which are consistent with those of the previous years, are:. Subsequent expenditures are included in the asset carrying amount or recognised as a separate asset, as appropriate, only when it is probable that future economic benefits will flow to the Group and the cost of the item can be measured reliably.

All other repairs and maintenance are charged to the income statement during the financial period in which they are incurred. Gains and losses on disposals are determined by comparing proceeds with carrying amount and are included in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income. The non-controlling interest is recognised if the risks and rewards of ownership of those shares remain with them. A financial liability is recorded to reflect the option. All subsequent changes to the liability other than the cash settlement are recognised in profit or loss.

Where the significant risks and rewards of ownership remain with the non-controlling interest the non-controlling interest continues to be recognised and is allocated its share of profits and losses. Where the significant risks and rewards of ownership reside with the controlling interest, the financial liability recognised offsets the non-controlling interest. Investments in subsidiary undertakings are recognised at cost less, if any, provision for impairment.

Externally acquired intangible assets are recognized at cost and subsequently amortised on a straight line basis over their useful economic lives. Intangible assets are recognized on business combinations if they are separable from the acquired entity or give rise to other contractual legal rights.

The amounts described to such intangible are arrived at by using appropriate valuation techniques. Expenditure on internally developed products is capitalized if it can be demonstrated that:. Amortisation is calculated at annual rates estimated to write off the costs of the assets over their expected useful lives and is charged to operating expenses from the point the asset is brought into use. Management believes that the useful life of the domain names and certain trading licenses is indefinite. These assets are reviewed for impairment annually.

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Subsequent expenditure on capitalised intangible assets is capitalised only where it clearly increases the economic benefits to be derived from the asset to which it relates. All other expenditure, including that incurred in order to maintain an intangible assets current level of performance, is expensed as incurred. Goodwill represents the excess of the cost of a business combination over the Group's interest in the fair value of identifiable assets, liabilities and contingent liabilities acquired.

Cost comprises the fair value of assets given, and liabilities assumed and equity instruments issued plus the amount of non-controlling interest in the acquire plus, if the business combination is achieved in stages, the fair value of the existing equity interest in the acquire. Contingent consideration, is included in the cost as its acquisition date fair value and, in case of contingent consideration classified as a financial liability, remeasured subsequently through profit or loss.

For business combinations completed on or after 1 January , direct costs of acquisition are recognized immediately as an expense. Changes in the estimated value of contingent consideration arising on business combinations completed by this date were treated as an adjustment to cost and, in consequence, resulted in a change in the carrying value of goodwill. Goodwill is capitalised as an intangible asset with any impairment in carrying value being charged to the consolidated statement of comprehensive income. Impairment tests on goodwill and other intangible assets with indefinite useful economic lives are undertaken annually at the financial year end.

Other non-financial assets are subject to annual impairment tests whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that their carrying amount may not be recoverable. Where the carrying value of an asset exceeds its recoverable amount i. Where it is not possible to establish the recoverable amount of an individual asset, the impairment test is carried out on the smallest group of assets to which it belongs for which there are separately identifiable cash flows, its cash generating units "CGU".

Goodwill is allocated on initial recognition to each of the Group's cash generating units that are expected to benefit from a business combination giving rise to the goodwill. Impairment charges are included in the administrative expenses line item in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income, except to the extent they reverse gains previously recognised in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income. An impairment loss recognised for goodwill is not reversed. Where the Group has the power to participate in but not control the financial and operating policy decisions of another entity, it is classified as an associate or structured agreements, as appropriate.

Associates are initially recognised in the consolidated balance sheet at cost. Subsequently associates are accounted for using the equity method, where the Group's share of post-acquisition profits and losses and other comprehensive income is recognised in the consolidated statement of profit and loss and other comprehensive income except for losses in excess of the Group's investment in the associate unless there is an obligation to make good those losses.

Profits and losses arising on transactions between the Group and its associates are recognised only to the extent of unrelated investors' interests in the associate. The investor's share in the associate's profits and losses resulting from these transactions is eliminated against the carrying value of the associate. Any premium paid for an associate above the fair value of the Group's share of the identifiable assets, liabilities and contingent liabilities acquired is capitalised and included in the carrying amount of the associate.

Where there is objective evidence that the investment in an associate has been impaired the carrying amount of the investment is tested for impairment in the same way as other non-financial assets. The Group is a party to a joint arrangement when there is a contractual arrangement that confers joint control over the relevant activities of the arrangement to the Group and at least one other party.

Joint control is assessed under the same principles as control over subsidiaries. The Group classifies its interests in joint arrangements as either:. Joint ventures - where the group has rights to only the net assets of the joint arrangement; or. Joint operations - where the group has rights to both the assets and obligations for the liabilities of the joint arrangement. In assessing the classification of interests in joint arrangements, the Group considers:.

The Group accounts for its interests in joint ventures in the same manner as investments in Associates i. Any premium paid for an investment in a joint venture above the fair value of the Group's share of the identifiable assets, liabilities and contingent liabilities acquired is capitalised and included in the carrying amount of the investment in joint venture. Where there is objective evidence that the investment in a joint venture has been impaired the carrying amount of the investment is tested for impairment in the same way as other non-financial assets.

The Group accounts for its interests in joint operations by recognising its share of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses in accordance with its contractually conferred rights and obligations. From 1 January , the Group classifies its financial assets in the following measurement categories:. The classification depends on the Group's business model for managing the financial assets and the contractual terms of the cash flows. For assets measure at fair value, gains and losses will either recorded in profit or loss or OCI. For investments in equity instruments that are not held for trading, this will depend on whether the Group has made an irrecoverable election at the time of initial recognitions to account for the equity investment at fair value through other comprehensive income.

Regular way purchases and sales of financial assets are recognised on trade-date, the date which the Group commits to purchase or sell the asset.

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Financial assets are derecognized when the rights to receive cash flows from the financial assets have expired or have been transferred and the Group has transferred substantially all risks and rewards of ownership. At initial recognition, the Group measures a financial asset at its fair value plus, in the case of a financial asset not at fair value through profit or loss FVTPL , transaction costs that are directly attributable to the acquisition of the financial asset. Changes in the fair value of financial assets at FVTPL are recognised in the statement of comprehensive.

Financially assets measured at amortised cost arise principally through the provision of services to customers e. They are initially recognised at fair value plus transaction costs that are directly attributable to their acquisition or issue and are subsequently carried at amortised cost using the effective interest rate method, less provision for impairment. Trade receivables are amounts due from customers for goods sold or services performed in the ordinary course of business.

They are generally due for settlement within days and therefore are all classified as current. Trade receivables are recognised initially at the amount of consideration that is unconditional. The group holds the trade receivables with the objective to collect the contractual cash flows and therefore measures them subsequently at amortised cost using the effective interest method. Due to the short-term nature of the current receivables, their carrying amount is considered to be the same as their fair value. Other receivables consist of amounts generally arising from transactions outside the usual operating activities of the group such as the proceeds from disposal of investment.

Due to the short-term nature of the other current receivables, their carrying amount is considered to be the same as their fair value. For the majority of the non-current receivables, the fair values are also not significantly different to their carrying amounts. For trade receivables the Group applies the simplified approach permitted by IFRS 9, which requires expected lifetime losses to be recognised from initial recognition of the receivables.

As a result, the comparative information provided continues to be accounted for in accordance with the Group's previous accounting policy. Until 31 December , the Group classified its financial assets in the following categories:. These assets are non-derivative financial assets with fixed or determinable payments that are not quoted in an active market.

They arise principally through the provision of services to customers e. The Group's receivables comprise trade and other receivables, cash and cash equivalents, and loans to customers in the balance sheet. Trade receivables which principally represent amounts due from licensees are carried at original invoice value less an estimate made for bad and doubtful debts based on a review of all outstanding amounts at the year-end. An estimate for doubtful debts is made when there is objective evidence that the Group will not be able to collect amounts due according to the original terms of receivables.

Bad debts are written off when identified. Cash and cash equivalents includes cash in hand, deposits held at call with banks and other short term highly liquid investments with original maturities of three months or less. Where cash is on deposit with maturity dates greater than three months, it is disclosed within other receivables. Loans to customers are in respect of formal loan agreements entered into between the Group and its customers, which are carried at original advanced value less provision for impairment or fair value on inception, if different.

They are classified between current and non-current assets in accordance with the contractual repayment terms of each loan agreement. Available-for-sale financial assets until 31 December Non-derivative financial assets classified as available-for-sale comprise the Group's strategic investments in entities not qualifying as subsidiaries, associates or jointly controlled entities. They are carried at fair value with changes in fair value generally recognised in other comprehensive income and accumulated in the available for sale reserve. In accordance with IAS 39, a significant or prolonged decline in the fair value of an available-for-sale financial asset is recognised in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income.

Purchases and sales of available-for-sale financial assets are recognised on settlement date with any change in fair value between trade date and settlement date being recognised in the available-for-sale reserve. On sale, the amount held in the available-for-sale reserve associated with that asset is removed from equity and recognised in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income.

Trade payables and other short-term monetary liabilities are initially recognised at fair value and subsequently carried at amortised cost using the effective interest method. Several of the Group's licensees participate in progressive jackpot games. Each time a progressive jackpot game is played, a preset amount is added to a cumulative jackpot for that specific game. The accrual for the jackpot at the consolidated balance sheet date is included in progressive jackpot and other operator's jackpot liabilities. The Group's liability in connection with client funds includes customer deposits offset by the fair value of open positions, the movement on which is recognised through profit or loss.

Regulatory, tax or legislative changes may impact the Company. Advice was sought by the Board from legal counsel and all necessary changes were implemented by the Company's service providers to ensure compliance with the regulation. Persistent high discount to NAV may create dissatisfaction amongst shareholders. The Company's shares traded at an average discount of In line with the prospectus, this was closely monitored by the Board and it was deemed that a share repurchase scheme was not required in the current year.

The Board will continue to actively monitor the discount in future periods. Business continuity, including service providers, may be impacted by natural disaster, cyber-attack, infrastructure damage or other "outside" factors. There were no threats to business continuity registered by any of the service providers. Control failures at key service providers may result in decreased service quality, loss of information, information security breach, theft or fraud. Control failures at key services are reported and reviewed. There were no material issues identified as part of the formal review conducted by the Board.

Tenure 3 years, 8 months. He served as Chairman of the UK government's non-bank lending task force, an industry-led task force that looked at the structural and behavioural barriers to the development of alternative debt markets in the UK. He has over 25 years of experience in financial services and has extensive knowledge and experience of regulatory and government relationships.

He brings to the Board experience in asset management and knowledge of leading a major financial services company. Tenure 3 years, 5 months. Board member of The Association of Investment Companies. Tenure 5 months. Mike has more than 35 years of audit and advisory experience in the asset management industry. Prior to joining Apax Partners, Andrew was a consultant at LEK where he advised clients on acquisitions in a number of sectors.

Little International Inc. Tenure 7 months. Skills and experience Roy Mackenzie joined Apax Partners in He has also held operating roles at Psion Plc. Qualifications M. Skills and experience Paul Meader has acted as Non-Executive Director of several insurers, London and Euronext listed investment companies, funds and fund managers in real estate, private equity, hedge funds, debt, structured product and multi-asset funds. He is a senior investment professional with over 30 years of multi-jurisdictional experience, 14 years of which were at chief executive level.

Current appointments Paul Meader is also a non-executive director of a number of other companies in fund management and insurance. His investment experience has been primarily in the telecommunications and service industries. Current appointments No other appointments. Skills and experience Andrew Guille has held directorships regulated financial services businesses since and has worked for more than 13 years in the private equity industry.

Andrew has been employed in the finance industry for over 30 years, with his early career spent in retail and institutional funds, trust and company administration, treasury and securities processing. Tenure 2 years, 9 months. Skills and experience Mark has been employed in the wealth management industry in both Guernsey and London for over 16 years, principally as an investment manager to a number of listed funds both open and closed-ended , institutional and private client portfolios.

The Board aims to promote the Company's long-term success and accountability to shareholders through the highest standards of corporate governance. The AIC represents closed- ended investment companies whose shares are traded on public markets. The purpose of the AIC Code is to provide a framework of best practice in respect of the governance of investment companies.

The Board has undertaken a review of the applicability of these changes to the Company and will update its governance framework accordingly. The Board considers that by reporting under the principles and recommendations of the AIC Code, and by reference to the AIC Guide, it provides better and more relevant information to its shareholders.

The Company is subject to, and complies with, the GFSC Code, which applies to all companies that hold a licence from the GFSC under the regulatory laws or which are registered or authorised as collective investment schemes in Guernsey. As an externally managed investment company, the Company relies on the adequacy of controls and tolerances of the Investment Manager and, in turn, the Investment Adviser with regard to the prevention of slavery and human trafficking, in accordance with the UK Modern Slavery Act More information is available in the report of the Investment Adviser on page This dividend policy should not be taken as an indication of the Company's expected future performance or results over any period and does not constitute a profit forecast.

It is intended to be a target only and there is no guarantee that it can or will be achieved. Accordingly, prospective or current investors should not place any reliance on the target dividend payment stated above in making an investment decision in relation to the Company. As a non-UK issuer, the Company does not require approval from shareholders for the payment of dividends in accordance with The Companies Guernsey Law, and the Articles of Incorporation of the Company. In response to feedback from shareholders, an ordinary resolution is proposed at each AGM concerning approval of the dividend policy of the Company.

The AIC Code recommends that at least half the Board of Directors of a UK- listed company, excluding the Chairman, should comprise Non- Executive Directors determined by the Board to be independent in character and judgement and free from relationships or circumstances that may affect, or could appear to affect, the Directors' judgement. In addition to this provision, a majority of the Board of Directors should be independent of the Investment Manager. Independence is determined by ensuring that, apart from receiving their fees for acting as Directors or owning shares, Non-Executive Directors do not have any other material relationships with, nor derive additional remuneration from, or as a result of transactions with, the Company, its promoters, its management or its partners, which in the opinion of the Board may affect, or could appear to affect, the independence of their judgement.

The Company complies with the recommendations regarding Board composition, as the Board of Directors is comprised entirely of independent Non-Executive Directors. I am pleased to confirm that I was independent on appointment, and remain so to date and this was confirmed by the external evaluation of the Board and its committees conducted in In the context of the nature, scale and complexity of the Company, certain recommendations of the AIC Code have not been deemed appropriate to the governance framework of the Company, an explanation of which is set out as follows:.

In particular, all of the Company's day-to-day management and administrative functions are outsourced to third parties. As a result, the Company has no Executive Directors, employees or internal control functions. The Company has therefore not reported further in respect of these provisions. This position is reassessed on an annual basis.

The Board as a whole considers matters relating to the Directors' remuneration. An external assessment of Directors' remuneration has not been undertaken. The Company's policy is that the fees payable to the Directors should reflect the time spent by the Directors on the Company's affairs and the responsibilities borne by the Directors and be sufficient to attract, retain and motivate Directors of a quality required to run the Company successfully. An external evaluation of the Board has been undertaken during the year; the results highlighted that the Board displayed a strong corporate governance culture and demonstrated a high degree of Board effectiveness.

The Board has implemented a Board management policy referred to throughout this section which includes consideration of relevant issues relating to diversity. As a result, and in view of the nature, scale and complexity of the Company, the Board does not consider a specific policy with respect to diversity to be necessary at this time. Diversity of the Board is further considered on at least an annual basis through the Board evaluation process. The Directors, all of whom are non-executive and considered to be independent for the purposes of Chapter 15 of the Listing Rules, are responsible for the determination of the investment policy of the Company and have overall responsibility for overseeing the Company's activities.

The Board was saddened to hear of Sarah's death in November and wishes to pass on its deepest condolences to her family. Mr Bane joined the Board on 3 July and brings with him a wealth of experience relevant to the business of the Company. Biographies of the Board of Directors, including details of their relevant experience, are available on page 42 and the Company's website at: www. The Board has not established a formal policy on diversity given the relative size of the Board and will keep this matter under review as is deemed appropriate by the Board, collectively.

AGML is responsible for the implementation of the investment policy of the Company and has overall responsibility for the management of the assets and investments of the Company. AGML reports to the Board at each quarterly Board meeting regarding the performance of the Company's investment portfolio, which provides the Board with an opportunity to review and discuss the implementation of the investment policy of the Company. In addition, the Board attends regular meetings with AGML in order to receive a detailed overview of the performance of the underlying investments and portfolio outlook.

The AGA Board reviewed and evaluated the performance of AGML during the year to 31 December and has determined that it is in the interests of the shareholders to continue with its appointment as Investment Manager. Biographies of the members of the AGA Investment Committee are available on page 43 and the Company's website at: www.

The Board is committed to a culture of openness and dialogue with shareholders and will not only report regularly, but also ensure that Directors are available for effective engagement, whether at the AGM or other investor relations events. Apax Partners, on behalf of AGA, manages a programme of meetings with investors during each of the financial reporting cycles throughout the year.

Contact details for shareholder queries can be found on page 86 and the Company's website at: www. The notice, agenda and form of proxy will be circulated to shareholders at least 21 working days prior to the AGM and will be made available on the UK National Storage Mechanism and the Company's website at: www.

Presentations were given by senior members of the Apax Partners team and provided us with an opportunity to tell our story to current and prospective investors and give them a greater insight into Apax's investment approach. The presentation and accompanying transcript are available to view in the Investor section of our website at:. The Board considers that the range and experience of its members is sufficient to fulfil its role effectively and provide the required level of leadership, governance and assurance.

The terms and conditions of appointment for Non-Executive Directors are outlined in their letters of appointment, and are available for inspection at the Company's registered office during normal business hours and at the AGM for 15 minutes prior to and during the AGM. There have been no significant changes to the external commitments of the Chairman during the year. The Chairman is responsible for the leadership of the Board, the creation of conditions necessary for overall Board and individual Director effectiveness and ensuring a sound framework of corporate governance, which includes a channel for shareholder communication.

The responsibilities of the Chairman include, but are not limited to:. Susie Farnon fulfils the role of Chairman of the Audit Committee. The Audit Committee is appointed under terms of reference from the Board of Directors, available on the Company's website at: www. The role and responsibility of the Chairman of the Audit Committee is to set the agenda for meetings of the Audit Committee and, in doing so, take responsibility for ensuring that the Audit Committee fulfils its duties under its terms of reference.

These include, but are not limited to:. The Audit Committee does not fulfil the role of a risk committee with regard to investment risk management systems. Overall responsibility for the Company's risk management and control systems lies with the Board. The Non-Executive Directors have a responsibility to ensure that they allocate sufficient time to the Company to perform their responsibilities effectively. Accordingly, Non-Executive Directors are required to make sufficient effort to attend Board or Committee meetings, to disclose other significant commitments to the Board before accepting such commitments and to inform the Board of any subsequent changes.

In determining the extent to which another commitment proposed by a Non-Executive Director would have an impact on their ability to sufficiently discharge their duties to the Company, the Board will give consideration to the extent to which the proposed commitment may create a conflict with:. Shareholders are provided with the opportunity to re-elect the Non -Executive Directors on an annual basis at the AGM of the Company and to review their remuneration in doing so. The role of the Non -Executive Directors includes, but is not limited to:.

The position of SID provides shareholders with someone to whom they can turn if they have concerns which they cannot address through the normal channels, for example with the Chairman, and is available as an intermediary between fellow Directors and the Chairman. The role serves as an important check and balance in the governance process. The role of the SID includes, but is not limited to:. The Board has considered the current recommendations of the AIC Code and has adopted various policies, procedures and control systems; a summary of each of these is available on the Company's website at: www.

The Administrator is responsible for the Company's general administrative requirements such as the calculation of the Net Asset Value and Net Asset Value per share and maintenance of the Company's accounting and statutory records. The Administrator is licensed by the GFSC under the Protection of Investors Bailiwick of Guernsey Law to act as ''designated administrator'' under that law and provide administrative services to closed-ended investment funds.

The Board ensures that it receives, in a timely manner, information of an appropriate quality to enable it to adequately discharge its responsibilities. Papers are provided to the Directors in advance of the relevant Board or Committee meeting to enable them to make further enquiries about any matters prior to the meeting, should they so wish.

This also allows Directors who are unable to attend to submit views in advance of the meeting. The Company Secretary takes responsibility for the distribution of Board papers and aims to circulate such papers at least five working days prior to Board or Committee meetings. The Board has adopted electronic board pack software which aids in the efficiency and adequacy of delivery of Board papers. Ongoing charges to 31 December were 1. The Company's ongoing charges are calculated in line with guidance issued by the AIC. They comprise of recurring costs such as administration costs, management fees paid to AGML and management fees paid to the underlying Private Equity funds' general partners.

They specifically exclude deal costs, taxation, financing costs, performance fees and other non-recurring costs. Management fees to 31 December represented 1. Management fees represent fees paid to both the Investment Manager and the Apax Funds. The Board has maintained under review the ever-changing regulatory and corporate governance environment and, in particular, has conducted an annual review of the Company's key policy documents, which has involved a reflection on a review of governance practices in the industry, in particular with regard to disclosure of diversity arrangements, viability statements and dividend policy, practice and disclosure procedures.

A summary of the Directors' attendance at meetings to which they were eligible to attend is provided below. Eligibility to attend the relevant meetings is shown in brackets. The Board will appoint committees of the Board on occasion to deal with specific operational matters; these committees are not established under separate terms of reference as their appointment is conditional upon terms resolved by the Board in formal Board meetings and authority conferred to such committees will expire upon the due completion of the duty for which it has been appointed.

Such committees are referred to as other committee meetings. The Board is pleased to report that such evaluation, which has included an assessment of internal control systems, was positive and the Board will continue its engagement with the existing key service providers. The Board aims to meet formally at least four times a year and met five times in the year from 1 January to 31 December The Audit Committee aims to meet formally at least four times a year as appropriate in terms of the financial cycle of the Company and met seven times in the year from 1 January to 31 December The Board has been pursuing the investment strategy of the Company during the year through the discretionary management arrangements with AGML as reflected in the Investment Manager's Report on page The Investment Manager operates under guidelines from the Board and, as set out in the Investment Management Agreement, as to the monitoring of the performance of the investment portfolio, associated risks and reporting to the Board in each of these areas.

The Board keeps under regular review the performance of the investment portfolio through quarterly reporting and regular dialogue with the Investment Manager. Additionally, the Board has regular calls, generally monthly, with the Investment Adviser where it receives an update on the Company's performance and has the opportunity to discuss movements in the portfolio. The Board held its second annual strategy day in November , reflecting on the performance of the Company, its investment portfolio and the future strategy of the Company.

As announced to the market in November , the Board is pleased to have secured a new multi -currency revolving credit facility with Credit Suisse AG, London Branch. This agreement replaced the facility held with Lloyds Bank plc which was due to expire on 3 February Further details of the terms of the revolving credit facility are available on page In line with the Company's prospectus, certain existing and former Apax employees acquired shares in the Company under a share-for-share exchange agreement at IPO.

As a result of this, those shareholders were subject to certain lock-up arrangements in respect of the shares issued to them for a period of either five or ten years. The Board, following advice from the corporate broker, did not facilitate a placing of the Company's shares for those locked-up shareholders who wished to sell their shares following the third release from lock-up on 15 June , due to insufficient uptake from those shareholders.

In order to position AGA to enable it to deliver on its objectives, the Board has set out a plan of key activities that need to be achieved through These will be monitored during the year and appropriate action taken to drive these initiatives forward. In accordance with the Board management policy, the Board is pleased to report completion of its third evaluation exercise, this time conducted externally through a process managed between the Chairman and the Company Secretary.

An external evaluation of the Board as a whole, the Directors as individuals and the Audit Committee was undertaken through Platinum Compliance Guernsey Limited. The Company has no connections with the evaluation provider. No material matters were observed during the external evaluation process and each of the Non-Executive Directors were deemed to remain independent of AGA and of the Investment Manager.

The results also highlighted that the Board displayed a strong corporate governance culture and demonstrated a high degree of Board effectiveness. Mike Bane was appointed to the Board of Directors on 3 July Neither an external search consultancy nor open advertising was used. Mike was appointed from a shortlist of suitably qualified candidates through an interview process involving both the Chairman and each of the Directors of the Board.

Mike was appointed to add to the breadth of experience and skills of the Board, in addition to filling a vacancy following the resignation of Sarah Evans. I am pleased to present the Audit Committee report for detailing the activities undertaken this year to fulfil its responsibilities. The main areas of activity for the Audit Committee have been:. This includes the valuation of investments;. The scope of the Committee with respect to internal control does not include all controls around risk arising from the Company's investment portfolio.

Such risks are overseen directly by the Board, which sets policies in this area to govern the day-to-day management of these risks by the Investment Manager. A summary of meetings held during the year and attendance at those meetings is available on page The Chairman of the Company, Tim Breedon, whilst not required to attend meetings of the Audit Committee, does so on occasion, particularly in meetings where financial reports are reviewed. The Audit Committee has determined that the key area for judgement and estimation is the fair value of the Company's investment portfolio for reporting purposes.

For investments not traded in an active market, the fair value is determined by using valuation techniques and methodologies, as deemed appropriate by the Investment Manager. These assumptions may give rise to valuations that differ from amounts realised in the future.

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The Audit Committee has also considered the calculation of the performance fee to be an area of judgement given the complexity of the calculation. Further details and considerations of the Committee below. The valuation of investments is a significant area of judgement in the preparation of the financial statements and performance reporting and represents a particular focus for the Audit Committee. The Audit Committee is satisfied that it is reasonable overall and has been prepared in accordance with the Company's stated accounting policies.

The majority of Derived Equity Investments held by the Company, and certain investments underlying the Company's Private Equity positions, are quoted and have a ready market, leaving the focus on the other Private Equity and Derived Debt Investments which are valued less easily. At each quarterly valuation point, and particularly at the year end, members of the Audit Committee have reviewed the detailed valuation schedules prepared by the Investment Manager.

Discussions were also held with the Investment Manager, Investment Adviser and the external auditor in respect of the interim and year end valuations only. The aim of these reviews and discussions was to ensure, as far as possible, that the valuations were prepared in line with the valuation process and methodology set out in the Company's accounting policies.

No material discrepancies were identified. The valuation of the Derived Debt Investments has been reviewed by the external auditor who has reported to the Committee and the Board on whether, in their opinion, the valuations used are reasonable and in accordance with the stated accounting policies. The detailed basis for calculation and settlement of the performance fee due to the Investment Manager is set out in the Company's prospectus, and is summarised in the notes to the financial statements. Although this fee may not always be material to the financial performance or position of the Company, its calculation is complex and payable to the Investment Manager, and therefore the Audit Committee consider it important by nature.

The Audit Committee generally commissions a specific report on the calculation of the fee prior to payment. However, no report was commissioned in the current year as there was no performance fee payable. KPMG has been the Company's external auditor since During the year, and up to the date of this report, the Audit Committee has met formally with KPMG on four occasions and, in addition, the Chairman of the Audit Committee has met them informally on four further occasions. These informal meetings have been held to ensure the Chairman is kept up-to-date with the progress of their work and that their formal reporting meets the Audit Committee's needs.

The formal meetings included detailed reviews of the proposed scope of the work to be performed by the auditor in their review of the Company's report for the period to 30 June and in their audit for the year ended 31 December They also included detailed reviews of the results of this work, their findings and observations. I am pleased to report that there are no matters arising that should be brought to the attention of shareholders. The Audit Committee has also reviewed KPMG's report on their own independence and objectivity, including their team structure for the audit of the Company and of the underlying Apax Funds, and the level of non-audit services provided by them.

Overall, there were no findings that caused the Audit Committee to be concerned about the quality of the audit. The Audit Committee has concluded that KPMG are independent and objective, carry out their work to a high standard and provide concise and useful reporting. The Company has a policy in place to ensure the independence and integrity of the external auditor, where non- audit services are to be provided by them. Full consideration of the financial and other implications on the independence of the auditor arising from any such engagement are considered before proceeding.

Note 6 of the financial statements includes a summary of fees paid to KPMG. An outline of the risk management framework and principal risks is provided on pages 38 to The Audit Committee has kept, and continues to keep, under review financial and operational risk, which includes reviewing and obtaining assurances from key service providers in respect of the controls for which they are responsible. The Audit Committee has not identified any areas of concern as a result.

The Audit Committee has met regularly with the key service providers besides KPMG involved in the preparation of the Company's reporting to its shareholders and in the operation of controls on its behalf, the Administrator and sub-Administrator, both of whom have attended each formal Audit Committee meeting as well as other informal meetings.

Through these meetings, supported by review and challenge of supporting documentation, the Audit Committee has satisfied itself, as far as is possible in the circumstances of a Company with outsourced functions, that financial and operational risks facing the Company are appropriately managed and controlled. The external auditor, KPMG, has reported to the Audit Committee that they found no reportable differences during the course of their audit work. The Company does not have any employees. Each of the service providers has whistleblowing policies in place.

The Company has a zero tolerance approach to bribery and corruption, in line with the UK Bribery Act An anti-bribery and corruption policy has been adopted and is kept under review. The Audit Committee members have each reviewed this annual report and earlier drafts of it in detail, comparing its content with their own knowledge of the Company, reporting requirements and shareholder expectations. Formal meetings of the Audit Committee have also reviewed the report and its content and have received reports and explanations from the Company's service providers about the content and the financial results.

The Audit Committee has concluded that the annual report, taken as a whole, is fair, balanced and understandable, and that the Board can reasonably and with justification make the statement of Directors' responsibilities on page The Directors place a great deal of importance on communication with shareholders. The interim report and accounts, annual report and financial statements are available to shareholders and to other parties who have an interest in the Company's performance on the Company's website at: www. Shareholders may obtain up-to-date information on the Company through the Company's website at: www.

The Notice of the AGM is sent out at least 21 working days in advance of the meeting. All shareholders have the opportunity to put questions to the Board or Investment Manager, either formally at the Company's AGM, informally following the meeting or in writing at any time during the year via the Company Secretary. The Company Secretary is available to answer general shareholder queries at any time throughout the year and may be contacted by email at: AGA-admin aztecgroup. The Board recognises and supports the investor relations activities, which include close engagement with shareholders.

The Board receives regular reports and updates from the investor relations team and the corporate broker. Shareholder views and feedback are communicated to the Board to help develop a balanced understanding of the issues and concerns of the shareholders. Publications can be found on the Company's website at: www. The Company has continued to build a dialogue with its shareholders. As part of this, Apax Partners provide an investor relations service to support communications with investors. Apax Partners maintain a programme of meetings between senior management of Apax Partners on behalf of AGA, and institutional investors, fund managers and equity analysts.

Issues discussed at investor presentations and meetings cover investment strategy and financial performance of AGA. To give all shareholders access to the Company's announcements, all material information reported via the London Stock Exchange's regulatory news service is published on the Company's website at: www. AGA has hosted conference calls to support the release of its interim and quarterly results.

An investor presentation will also be held for the full-year results. Details were published on the London Stock Exchange. These events, which are published on the Company's website, are made available to the market, subject to relevant marketing restrictions in certain jurisdictions, with the facility for all listeners to ask questions, as well as having a permanent replay facility, and a full transcript. Provisions relating to Executive Directors' remuneration are not deemed relevant to AGA, being an externally managed investment company with a Board comprised wholly of Non-Executive Directors.

In particular, the Company's day-to-day management and administrative functions are outsourced to third parties. As a result, the Company has no Executive Directors, employees or internal operations. The Directors who served in the period from 1 January to 31 December received the fees detailed in the table below. No taxable benefits were paid to Directors in respect of this period and no remuneration above that was paid to the Directors for their services. Remuneration paid reflects the duties and responsibilities of the Directors and the value of their time.

No element of the Directors' remuneration is performance related. Fees are pro-rated where an appointment takes place during a financial year. None of the fees disclosed below were payable to third parties by the Company. The Directors are entitled to be reasonably reimbursed for expenses incurred in the exercise of their duties as Directors.

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Expenses paid to the Directors are also listed in the table below. Appointed 3 July Retired 3 January The Directors submit their annual report together with the audited financial statements of the Company for the year ended 31 December On 15 June , the entire issued ordinary share capital of the Company was admitted to the Premium Listing segment of the Official List of the Financial Conduct Authority and to unconditional trading on the London Stock Exchange's Main Market for listed securities.

The Directors have approved a dividend of 4. An interim dividend of 4. Biographies of the Board of Directors, including details of their relevant experience, are available on the Company's website at: www. The business of the Company is managed by the Directors who may exercise all the powers of the Company, subject to any relevant legislation, any directions given by the Company by passing a special resolution and to the Company's Articles of Incorporation the "Articles".

The Articles, for example, contain specific provisions concerning the Company's power to borrow money and issue shares. Rules relating to the appointment and removal of the Directors are contained within the Company's Articles of Incorporation, which can be found in full on the Company's website at: www. The Company may only make amendments to the Articles of Incorporation of the Company by way of special resolution of the shareholders, in accordance with The Companies Guernsey Law, , as amended.

The Company has made no political donations in the period since incorporation or since admission. The rights attaching to the shares are set out in the Articles of Incorporation. There are no restrictions on the transfer of ordinary shares in the capital of the Company other than those which may be imposed by law from time to time. There are no special control rights in relation to the Company's shares and the Company is not aware of any agreements between holders of securities that may result in restrictions on the transfer of securities or on voting rights, except for the lock-ups agreed at the time of admission as set out in the prospectus.

In accordance with the Disclosure and Transparency Rules, Board members and certain employees of the Company's service providers are required to seek approval to deal in the Company's shares. Details of the Company's ability to allot shares and pre-emption rights are included in the Articles of Incorporation. In a general meeting of the Company, on a show of hands, every member who is present in person or by proxy and entitled to vote shall have one vote. On a poll, every member who is present in person or by proxy shall have one vote for every share of which they are the holder.

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Unless the Directors otherwise determine, a shareholder shall not be entitled to vote either personally or by proxy:. The Directors' share interests in the Company are detailed on the prior page. The Company has been notified in accordance with DTR 5 of the Disclosure and Transparency Rules of the interests in its issued ordinary shares as at 31 December detailed in the table on page The following agreements are considered significant to the Company:.

There are no agreements between the Company and its Directors providing for compensation for loss of office that occurs because of a change of control. There are no disclosures required under Listing Rule section 9. The Audit Committee noted that there were two post-balance sheet events:.

Together, these two transactions represent an estimated uplift of c. After making enquiries and given the nature of the Company and its investments, the Directors, after due consideration, conclude that the Company should be able to continue for the foreseeable future.

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