end of week asx wrap with delivery person in mask fencing people on citrus tree and news website for property
Online shopping, citrus farms, and property websites made waves on the market this week. Image – Canva.
  • MAFM exercises call option to buy 30 million VTH shares from PWG
  • REA Group strong following healthy listings numbers
  • Goodman Group benefits from high barrier to entry strategy

As the quarterlies roll in, the week wraps up.

The market opened to news Vitalharvest (ASX: VTH) accepted the Macquarie Agricultural Funds Management (MAFM) offer at $1.26, likely bringing to a close a months-long takeover battle for the company. Monday continued with news from Aventus (ASX: AVN), completing $600 million in debt refinancing, and Ingenia going on a spending spree.

Soon after, the market went fairly quiet, occasionally seeing quarterly updates come in, or admin. Today, however, that remained largely the same except for an announcement from VTH about MAFM accepting the call option provided back in November last year.

The mid-week wrap can be found here.

The broader market

Today, the ASX is trading lower than the record highs seen yesterday, briefly peering at 7,100 points after 11:00 am, quickly moving down again afterwards.

Confidence in the Dow was one reason behind the upward movement, Covid continues to buffet the market too, the mystery Sydney case saw travel stocks move up and down at the drop of a mask.

The resources sector again was strongly represented in the top five performers, two travel companies: Flight Centre and Corporate Travel Management, took out fourth and fifth place at the time of publication.

The market was trading at 7,086.60 at the time of publication.

asx movements chart 7 may 2021
Image – Google.

So far today, the top performers for real estate companies are (updated at 4:51 pm):

Top-performing ASX listed real estate companies

Company Code Price Change (%)
Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield URW 5.48 2.81
Rural Funds Group RFF 2.47 2.07
Scentre Group SCG 2.74 1.86
Carindale Property Trust CDP 4.44 1.83
Irongate IAP 1.47 1.73

Source: ASX

The movement

This week started off with news on the months-long takeover tussle for Vitalharvest (ASX: VTH). Following a flurry of activity last week, MAFM came out on top after an attaque au fer on the Roc Private Equity $1.25 offer.

Vitalharvest accepted the $1.26 offer from MAFM on Monday, the asset sale alternative should unitholders not approve the trust scheme is $348.1 million.

Today, Vitalharvest and Primewest Group (ASX: PWG) announced MAFM exercised the call option made to them November last year. Primewest, who manage Vitalharvest and are a substantial holder of the company, will sell MAFM the 30 million Vitalharvest units it has for $29.5 million. The units amount to about 16.2% of VTH.

Little else happened since the mid-week wrap, except two quarterly results which delighted investors: REA Group and Goodman.

REA Group (ASX: REA) is doing well following a 6 cent drop in shares since the start of May, the company doing well overall considering the 30 cent plunge in prices back in March this year. The company released its quarterly update today to much fanfare, CEO Owen Wilson said:

“Australia’s property market is in full flight, with this positive momentum contributing to strong listings growth for the quarter. Once again, realestate.com.au set new audience records and delivered over 3 million buyer enquiries per month, an increase of 82% for the quarter.”

Owen Wilson, CEO REA Group

The News Corp-owned company reported 13% higher revenues at $225.6 million for the quarter, with an EBITDA (including share of profit/losses from associates) up 10% at $123.3 million for Q3. Listings were also up for the quarter following a quiet January, up 8% nationally.

Goodman Group (ASX: GMG) also saw share prices recover from a March low of $16.44, currently $19.25. It isn’t a trading high though, January saw share prices at least ten cents higher, the company peaked at almost $20 ($19.97) early in November last year.

Following the release of the Goodman Q3 results, the share price jumped from $19.36 to $19.50, but quickly dropped back down, and now trades at $19.25.

Nonetheless, the third quarter scorecard was a resounding ‘A+’, the company on track for an operating profit of $1.2 billion for the entire financial year.

“We have concentrated our portfolio in high barrier to entry markets where land is scarce and use is intensifying.”

Greg Goodman, Group CEO

The company portfolio grew to $9.6 billion, the company said the growing demand for online shopping drove some of the market.

“Our urban infill markets are experiencing significant demand as customers respond to consumer desire for convenience. Changing consumption trends across the physical and digital space are fundamentally impacting the volume and changing the nature of demand from our customers.”

Goodman Group

Finally, Peet Limited (ASX: PPC) continues to see substantial holders come and go. Earlier in the week, changes in substantial holding of PPC shares within 24 hours suggested some companies were hedging on Peet. Today it was announced First Sentier became a substantial holder on 4 April this year, holding 5.89% of the company. Only a day later the share increased to 7.13%.

That’s this week in ASX listed real estate companies, crispy headlines to start and end the week with not much else inbetween, rather like a pomme soufflé.

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