3 ASX shares on my watchlist: Vocus, Mantra Group and Blackmores Limited

Vocus Group Ltd (ASX: VOC) shares, Mantra Group Ltd (ASX: MTR) shares and Blackmores Limited (ASX: BKL) shares are on my watchlist.

Share prices are down

Source: Google Finance

As can be seen above, it’s not been an easy 12 months for these companies’ shareholders.

Mantra, down 23%.

Blackmores, down 34%. Vocus, down 72%!

Vocus, down 72%!

I don’t paraphrase this famous saying loosely, but ‘when fear is running rampant in the sharemarket it’s good to be greedy’.

Here’s why I have Vocus, Mantra and Blackmores shares on my watchlist.


Vocus shares have plunged 26% today, following a profit downgrade, and 72% over the past year — not including dividends. Vocus has its fair share of risks, of course, including the risks around takeover integration, debt and cash flow.

However, I think Vocus has a great group of assets and underlying businesses. The one thing that is holding me back from adding more shares to my family’s portfolio is the accounting write-downs. Indeed, on its reported profit numbers, Vocus looks dirt cheap. While I prefer to focus on cash flow I’m waiting to confirm the accounts are ship-shape before buying in.

Indeed, in my opinion, the company’s cash flow looks okay, while management appears to have some levers it can pull to bounce back. One of those levers may mean lowering the dividend payment.


Mantra appears to be plagued by concerns surrounding Airbnb and other competition. However, once again, the underlying assets appear to be good quality.

While the threat of Airbnb should not be underestimated, I think the company generates decent cash flow and pays a good dividend to shareholders. For those reasons, Mantra is on my watchlist.


Blackmores is one of Australia’s leading vitamins producers. The company’s recent performance had been hampered by a rapid change in consumer purchasing, particularly those customers who were buying products and shipping them to China.

Looking ahead, Blackmores’ products are likely to continue demanding a healthy premium in local markets, and the long-term runway in Asian markets appears promising.

Foolish Takeaway

There are risks in every investment you will ever make — otherwise, it would be called ‘saving’. However, in my opinion, these three companies are further up the risk spectrum, so caution is advised.

Indeed, I’m really tempted to buy shares in Vocus at these levels but I’m taking my time because I know patience doesn’t lose us money.

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Motley Fool Contributor Owen Raszkiewicz does not have a financial interest in any company mentioned. Owen welcomes and encourages your feedback. You can follow him on Twitter @OwenRask.

The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Vocus Communications Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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