Posted on Monday, August 29th, 2011
Venoco Inc. (NYSE: VQ) shares surged 30.3% to $11.70 after the oil and natural-gas company’s chief executive proposed taking the company private at a price of $12.50 a share. The stock volume Monday of 2.5 million shares proved more than five times its daily average.
A news release issued August 29 reported that the Denver-based Venoco, Inc. announced that its board of directors had received a non-binding proposal from CEO Timothy M. Marquez, the holder of approximately 50.3% of Venoco’s outstanding common stock, to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Venoco common stock for $12.50 per share in cash.
In response, Venoco’s board is in the process of forming a special committee of independent directors to consider the proposal, which will be comprised of all of the directors of the company other than Mr. Marquez. The committee will retain independent financial advisors and legal counsel to assist it in its work.
The release quotes the board of directors as cautioning Venoco shareholders and others considering trading in its securities that it has only received the proposal and that no decision has been made with respect to the company’s response to the proposal.
Venoco is an independent energy company primarily engaged in the acquisition, exploration, exploitation and development of oil and natural gas properties primarily in California.
Posted on Monday, August 29th, 2011
Northgate Minerals Corporation (AMEX: NXG) shares shot higher 38.1% to $4.35 on word that it had been acquired by AuRico Gold Inc. (NYSE:AUQ). Volume for Northgate topped 11.7 million shares, or better than quadruple its usual volume.
A news release out August 29 revealed that the Toronto-based AuRico and Northgate have entered into a definitive acquisition agreement to create a new leading intermediate gold producer. The new company will have five operating gold mines, a sixth mine targeting production in 2012 and three gold development projects in Mexico, Canada, and Australia, three of the top global mining jurisdictions. The combined company is completely unhedged and offers full exposure to record gold and silver prices and an exceptional growth profile from approximately 475,0001 gold equivalent (“Aue”) ounces2 this year to 730,000+3 Aue ounces in 2013 (growth of approximately 54%).
Under the terms of the Agreement, AuRico will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Northgate on the basis of 0.365 AuRico common shares per Northgate common share.
Northgate CEO Richard Hall was quoted in the release as saying, “This transaction gives Northgate shareholders a significant premium to market and an exciting opportunity to participate in a leading intermediate gold company. The Northgate team has worked hard to develop a highly successful business in Canada and Australia and we look forward to further value creation through our combination with AuRico.”
Northgate Minerals Corporation is a gold and copper producer with mining operations, development projects and exploration properties in the Americas and Australia.
Posted on Thursday, August 25th, 2011
Zillow Inc. (Nasdaq: Z) shares gained 19.9% to $31.49, a day after the online real-estate information provider reported its first quarterly financial results since going public in late July. Volume for the stock came in at 436,000 shares, just nosing out its full-day average.
A news release posted August 24 reported quarterly revenues increased 116% to $15.8 million from $7.3 million in the second quarter of 2010.
Marketplace revenues increased 269% to $9.7 million from $2.6 million in the second quarter of 2010. Display revenues increased 30% to $6.1 million from $4.7 million in the second quarter of 2010.
GAAP net income for the second quarter 2011 was $1.6 million, compared to a net loss of $2.0 million in the same period a year ago and a net loss of $0.8 million in the first quarter of 2011.
Said CEO Spencer Rascoff in the same piece, “The second quarter was outstanding for Zillow® with record revenues, traffic and mobile usage. It marks our first profitable quarter on a GAAP net income basis and our fourth consecutive profitable quarter on an Adjusted EBITDA basis. We’re extremely pleased with our progress and rapid growth, yet we believe we’ve only scratched the surface of our opportunity.”
The Seattle-based Zillow calls itself the leading real estate information marketplace, providing vital information about homes, real estate listings and mortgages through its website and mobile applications, enabling homeowners, buyers, sellers and renters to connect with real estate and mortgage professionals best suited to meet their needs.
Posted on Thursday, August 25th, 2011
Collective Brands Inc. (NYSE: PSS) shares rose 19.8% to $12.32 after the parent of Payless and Stride Rite shoe stores said it would explore strategic options. Volume for the stock surmounted 4.8 million shares, or more than double its full-day average.
A news release out August 24 reported that the company, based out of Topeka, Kansas, said that as part of its efforts to optimize the performance of its Payless and Stride Rite store fleet, it would close approximately 475 under-performing and low-volume, non-strategic stores in the next three years with more than 300 of those closings coming by the end of this fiscal year.
The Company estimated that the costs for lease terminations, severance, and other exit costs related to closing these stores could be in the range of $25 million to $35 million.
The release also quoted CEO Michael Massey as saying, “While the second quarter was challenging for the company, we are taking aggressive actions to improve the business.
“In Payless Domestic, we are gaining a much greater understanding of our customers and their needs and expectations. With this clarity, we are taking short term actions to improve our performance, accelerating key initiatives, and adjusting our longer term strategies. At the same time, we will continue to invest for growth and profitability in our Performance + Lifestyle Group and international businesses.”
In the same release, investors could also see that net sales for the quarter ending July 30 increased 4.9% to $882.4 million. The second quarter 2011 net loss attributable to Collective Brands, Inc. was $35.0 million or $0.58 per diluted share. Excluding certain impairment and severance charges, adjusted net earnings attributable to Collective Brands were $9.9 million, or $0.16 per diluted share.
Posted on Wednesday, August 24th, 2011
Dycom Industries Inc. (NYSE: DY) shares gained 10.3% to $15.25, after the specialty contracting company late Tuesday reported a spike in fiscal fourth-quarter income. Volume for the stock surmounted one million shares, whereas its daily average was about 363,000.
A news release dated August 23 reported that the company, based out of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, had revenues of $303.7 million for the quarter ended July 30, 2011, compared to $281.5 million for the quarter ended July 31, 2010, an increase of 10.8% after adjusting for revenues from acquired businesses and the incremental week in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010;
Quarterly net income of $13.0 million, or $0.38 per common share diluted, compared to $4.6 million, or $0.12 per common share diluted, for the prior-year quarter. Share repurchases amounted to 580,000 shares of its common stock for $9.1 million in open market transactions during the quarter ended July 30, 2011.
Dycom is a leading provider of specialty contracting services throughout the United States. These services include engineering, construction, maintenance and installation services to telecommunications providers, underground facility locating services to various utilities including telecommunications providers, and other construction and maintenance services to electric and gas utilities and others.