Another upbeat trading update from insurance claims outsourcer and bulletin board hot topic Quindell (QPP:AIM) will surprise few investors who have been following this fascinating story. The nub of the today's announcement is that targeted new business (worth £450 million) unveiled alongside November's £200 million share placing fund raise, has been met and bettered by £30 million.
Rob Terry, Quindell's sometimes outspoken founder and executive chairman, says: 'The group has now achieved the organic growth potential indicated at the time of its £200 million fundraise in November last year.' Reassuringly, he adds that 'this growth has been achieved whilst being selective about the type of new business we have contracted to ensure the best quality of work, margin potential and cash performance for the group whilst maintaining our focus on driving down the cost of claims, protecting consumer rights and ensuring the best possible customer experience.'
But even more interesting, perhaps, is news that Quindell will get its 2013 full-year results out earlier than last year, with a 31 March date confirmed. 2012 results were not published until May last year. This is perhaps an indication of the need for speed in getting results out if Quindell wants to live up to its FTSE 100 blue-chip ambitions.
Investors can expect more detail on the company's pre-flagged switch from Aim to the main market in March's results and a move in April or May looks likely. With a current market value a little over £2 billion, it should fly straight into the FTSE 250 mid cap index, while it will probably need the share price to hit around 70p to qualify for the FTSE 100. Brokers Cenkos and Canaccord believe strongly that such levels are within reach this year with respective 80p and 87p share price targets.
Terry is clearly not every investor's cup of tea and he has, in the past, been accused of talking his own book a little too aggressively, although there has always been a reasoned explanation that he has only ever told it like it is.
In fairness to Terry, he has listened, resisting temptations to use Twitter as a communication ad lib mechanism and instead rely on official channels to get new information into the public arena.
Many sceptics appear to be have been won over, as we spelled out in December, new heavyweight institutions among them. Those that have, or indeed an investors, that followed Shares' January Play of the Week at 21.5p are well in the money (our Play is up 76% so far). The stock last month hit a 44p record but if the bulls are right, there remains plenty of upside, in both this story and the share price, ahead.