Cenkos sees profit leap as it fundraises in spite of turmoil

MID-CAP broker Cenkos looked unfazed by the tough climate for City securities houses yesterday as it posted an almost 200 per cent rise in pre-tax profit in the first half of the year.

Shares in Cenkos jumped more than eight per cent as it said profits were up 194 per cent to £5.3m compared to June 2010, after revenues jumped 14 per cent to £28.5m.

But its two smaller divisions, institutional equities and fund management, both posted revenue falls and outgoing chief executive Simon Melling said it was keen to spread revenue more evenly across the group.

Cenkos said a raft of fundraisings for high-profile clients such as haulage group Stobart, for which it raised £120m in May, had boosted it despite “problematic markets”.

The broker warned that the “fragile and volatile equity markets” seen this year had been caused “in part by the continued uncertainty surrounding the European sovereign debt crisis and the weak state of the global economic recovery.”

Melling added that the outlook was for the market volatility seen since July to go on.

“We have seen increased economic turmoil since the period ended causing a slowdown in activity levels and I anticipate that these will continue for some time,” he said.

Cenkos raised £619m in the first half, £117m less than a year ago, but added two clients to its list.

It also raised £166m for Anthony Bolton’s Fidelity China Special Situations in February, less than a year after raising it £460m.