Ticker: CHRT Exchange: AIM

The Cohort Group comprises six military, electronics and intelligence development operations spread across the UK, Germany, and Portugal. The six are:  Chess offering electro-optical tracking and surveillance systems for naval and land defence and security customers; EID designs and makes advanced communications systems for naval and land defence customers; ELAC SONAR supplies advanced sonar systems and underwater communications to global customers in the naval marketplace; MASS provides advanced digital services serving the defence and security markets MCL designs, sources and supports advanced electronic and surveillance technology for the UK MOD and other government agencies; SEA delivers and supports technology-based products for the defence and transport markets alongside specialist research and training services.

Trading update: performance ahead of expectations

In an Update for the year to 30 April 2024 Cohort reports overall performance slightly ahead of market expectations. We note that the Group reports very strong order intake of c.£387m (compared to £218m in FY23) resulting in a closing order book which stood at c.£518m (FY23: £329.1m), inclusive of the March SEA Royal Navy £135m Ancilia contract.

The group notes strong H2 performance, with overall growth in the Sensors & Effectors division, notably Chess and SEA, outpacing the Communications & Intelligence division where, as expected, UK MOD orders decreased from the 2022/23 peak, and Portugal continued to experience some contract delays.

Cohort reports good demand from both domestic customers and for exports, noting increased attention to defence spending spurred by conflict in Ukraine and the Middle East, and ongoing tension in the Indo-Pacific region.

The order book now covers c.£180m, i.e. 90%, FY 25 revenue market expectations (FY24 was 84% covered at £145m). We see the momentum established in FY24 continuing into FY25.

At this stage we maintain our outlook to FY25 and a Fair Value of 725p / share.



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