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BB Healthcare said growth outlook for healthcare remains bright

The reporting period was one of the most tumultuous ever seen by the healthcare sector amid the coronavirus pandemic

BB Healthcare Trust PLC -

BB Healthcare Trust PLC (LON:BBH) saw its net asset value (NAV) per share rise to 159.4p as at the end of May, 2020, up from 143.11p six months earlier.

The investor in global healthcare companies said in its half-yearly report, covering the six months to the end of May, that its share price increased by 10.3% over the period, which was slightly less than the 11.4% increase in NAV.

Factoring in the final dividend in respect of the previous fiscal year, the company’s shares delivered a total return of 12.2% while the total NAV return was 13.3%. Over the same period, the benchmark index against which the company measures performance rose by 12.0% in sterling terms.

The reporting period included months in which the coronavirus pandemic dominated the headlines and BB Healthcare said the crisis resulted in healthcare priorities changing dramatically.

“The most obvious manifestation of this is the debate around when hospital elective surgical volumes will return to normal (the current consensus is end of Q4 2020 or early 2021). Our investment managers have been nimble enough to move between subsectors as appropriate,” BB Healthcare chairman, Randeep Grewal said in the statement.

“These are unprecedented times and there will doubtless be many more twists and turns in the road ahead. There are few things about which the investor can feel sure, but one's conviction in the growth outlook for healthcare is surely one of them and I feel confident that our investment managers will be able to navigate the portfolio successfully in the coming months,” Grewal added.

The company announced an interim dividend of 2.5p, which shareholders can take in the form of a subscription (or scrip) dividend if they wish.

It also said it is to seek shareholders’ permission to be able to allot new shares on a non-pre-emptive basis, which the directors believe will improve the liquidity of the shares in the market and will also enable the company to take advantage of more investment opportunities.

Quick facts: BB Healthcare Trust PLC

Price: 185 GBX

LSE:BBH
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £938.13 m
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