Market Cap£245m

Last Close 597p

Cohort is an AIM-listed defence and security company operating across six divisions: MASS (31% of FY20 sales), SEA (24%), MCL (11%), 80%-owned EID (14%), 81%-owned Chess Technologies (19%) and newly acquired ELAC SONAR.

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Investment summary

Cohort’s defence and security orientation has proven resilient during the pandemic. The FY21 closing update confirmed management expects to meet estimates of slightly higher FY21 operating profits. The major impact of the pandemic has been to defer some order awards to FY22 and FY23, mainly at EID reducing its FY22 revenues and margins. A record £210m group order intake was still achieved. The £240m FY21 backlog provides 63% cover of FY22 consensus sales which are unchanged as the other divisions including ELAC compensate with stronger trading, but are unable to fully cover the profit shortfall. As a result our FY22 adjusted PBT is lowered by 9%, a marginal increase on FY21.

Y/E Apr
Revenue (£m)
PBT (£m)
EPS (p)
P/E (x)
P/CF (x)
2019A 121.2 17.3 15.9 33.6 17.8 20.9
2020A 131.1 20.9 17.5 37.1 16.1 18.7
2021E 142.1 21.4 17.7 33.6 17.8 11.1
2022E 158.7 21.6 17.7 33.7 17.7 23.0
Industry outlook

Cohort is heavily influenced by activities in defence and security (90% of FY20 sales). These markets require highly differentiated technologies and services with high barriers to entry based on customer relationships, regulation and high-level security clearances. Defence is generally quite resilient in periods of significant economic disruption and the £4bn pa increase in the UK defence budget announced in November 2020 appears to mitigate concerns over imminent budget constraints.

Last updated on 21/06/2021
Content on Cohort
Cohort – Solid progress through the pandemic
Industrials | Update | 26 May 2021
Cohort – Robust in a challenging environment
Industrials | Update | 10 December 2020
Cohort – Extending a sound interest
Industrials | Update | 4 December 2020
View more
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Share price graph
Balance sheet
Forecast net cash (£m) 1.7
Forecast gearing ratio (%) N/A
Price performance
Actual (8.0) (5.2) 9.5
Relative* (8.6) (10.0) (5.2)
52-week high/low 680.0p/520.0p
*% relative to local index
Key management
Nick Prest Chairman
Andrew Thomis CEO
Simon Walther FD