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Ashley House (ASH) is expected to achieve its full year profit target of £1.8m, although that includes a non-cash write back. The health and community care property developer had year-end net debt of £1.5m. The Morgan Sindall joint venture has reached financial close on its first extra care apartments and bungalows scheme in the Isle of Wight with a further scheme expected to reach financial close in the next few weeks. Modular building business F1 Modular lost money last year. There is work manufacturing classrooms for schools and projects in the retail sector so it is not dependent on residential and health development. Maureen Moy has taken her stake to 10% after buying 1.9 million shares at 13.23p a share.
Dairy and livestock services provider National Milk Records (NMR) generated revenues of £5.32m in the three months to March 2018. This means that revenues are £1.51m ahead so far this year, although the comparatives are weak. Herdwise, the screening service for Johne’s disease and other testing services are providing growth with a small improvement from milk recording services. Rising milk supply has started to hold back milk prices. There will be a one-off benefit in the fourth quarter and the first quarter of next year from a contract to supply 10,000 genomic tests that should help to provide information to improve resistance to bovine TB. NMR is one of the nominees for NEX Exchange company of the year at the 2018 Small Cap Awards.
Forbes Ventures (FOR) says that the majority shareholder in challenger bank Civilised Investments Ltd has exercised warrants that increased its shareholding to 95.7. Warwick Capital Partners is also underwriting a £12m subscription, although £4.65m of this can be subscribed by minority shareholders. This would increase the overall valuation of the bank to £20m. Forbes owns 0.05% of Civilised Investments prior to the subscription and it has not said if it will be investing any more cash.
Gledhow Investments (GDH) had £172,000 in cash at the end of March 2018 but £20,000 is trapped in a Beaufort Securities account. NAV has increased from £510,000 to £869,000.
Gunsynd (GUN) says that Brazil Tungsten Holdings, the company it owns a 6.18% stake in, has restarted mining operations after a government suspension was lifted.
Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) will advise FANTOM Foundation on the $39.8m token generation event due to start on 15 June. FANTOM is using Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG) as a smart contract platform. This is an alternative to blockchain, which should be faster and have lower fees.
IMC Exploration Group (IMCP) is focusing on the completion of works programmes in its three principal projects. The joint venture with Trove Rehabilitation only requires ministerial approval to complete. Eamon O’Brien has been appointed as a director and he will become chairman. Kathrine Byrne is also joining the board. Nial Ring and Liam McGrattan will step down from the board.
A strong performance in the used vehicles market and continued growth in aftersales helped to offset the downturn in the new vehicles contribution at Cambria Automobiles (CAMB) in the six months to February 2018. Underlying operating profit still fell from £5.8m to £5.3m. Interim pre-tax profit was £4.8m. Full year pre-tax profit is expected to decline from £11.3m to £9.5m. The significant capital investment programme continues but net debt is minimal.
Vertu Motors (VTU) also performed well despite the tough background in the motor dealer sector. In the year to February 2018, adjusted pre-tax profit fell from £31.5m to £28.6m on flat revenues. The full year dividend was increased by 7% to 1.5p a share. It appears that trading may be starting to improve and the benefits of the current investment programme are yet to show through. Net cash is £19.3m. A further dip in profit to £25m is expected this year.
CEPS (CEPS) reported flat 2017 revenues but the underlying pre-tax profit jumped from £146,000 to £902,000. The biggest improvement in profit came from Friedman’s and Aford Awards, while CEM Press made a larger loss.
TyraTech Inc (TYR) says sales of the PureScience poultry mite treatment are building in the US and a launch is planned in Europe. Trials of a treatment for intestinal worms in pigs have shown a 70% reduction in the worms. TyraTech has shown that it can develop effective products and the remaining cash from the sale of Vamousse will finance further product development and trials.
Deltex Medical (DMG) had a tough 2017 but lower cost meant that the loss was reduced. The medical monitoring equipment and consumables supplier has won significant contracts in the US and France. Revenues dipped from £6.3m to £5.9m, while the loss was down from £2.4m to £2m. Annualised cost reductions of £1m will partly show through in 2018. The UK remains tough with potential recovery later in the year. International business should grow. A £2m fundraising should provide enough cash to invest in the technology and cover a reduced loss.
HaloSource Inc (HALO) has disappointed the market again. This time the auditors have not allowed some of the sales shipped at the end of 2017 to be included in revenues. Cantor Fitzgerald has maintained its 2018 loss forecast at $3.4m, down from $5.7m. The cash outflow should be lower.
Sprue Aegis (SPRP) has come to an agreement with BRK over the termination of their distribution and manufacturing agreements. Sprue Aegis will have to pay £11m in instalments up until December. There will be a £3.8m exceptional charge in the 2017 accounts. The full year results will be published on 15 March.
Wey Education (WEY) reported interim revenues 44% ahead at £1.74m and an improvement in underlying pre-tax profit from £75,000 to £145,000. An initial contribution from Academy 21 accounted for part of the improvement. A 2017-18 profit of £500,000 is forecast, rising to £2.5m the following year.
Trading in the shares of Lionsgold Ltd (LION) has been suspended following the completion of the acquisition of Goldbloc, which has developed a digital gold currency. This is deemed as a change of business. The suspension could last up to four months.
Fox Marble (FOX) increased revenues by 50% to €1.2m in 2017 and lost €3.4m. This year will be more significant with the processing factory up and running and capital investment made in machinery. There was €440,000 in the bank at the end of April 2018.
Out-of-hospital care services provider Totally (TLY) has secured the renewal of an urgent care services contract worth €1.2m with the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Westminster Group (WSG) has admitted that a previously announced Middle East contract is in Iran and it has still to become effective. The current political situation could scupper the deal or at least delay it.
Microsaic Systems (MSYS) has signed a distribution agreement with Rightek, which will distribute the Microsaic 4500 MiD mass spectrometry detector in Taiwan.
Stem cell services provider WideCells Group (WDC) has commitments to invest £1.47m at 3p a share and is offering the chance of additional investment of up to £450,000, via a bookbuild using the Teathers app and that closes on 21 May. WideCells has still not been able to publish its 2017 accounts so trading in the shares remains suspended. Directors have loaned the company £215,000. At the end of June 2017, there was cash of £869,000 and debt of £634,000, before any of the director loans. WideCells intends to repay £120,000 of debt, spend £150,000 on product development, £110,000 on the CellPlan platform and £33,000 on WideAcademy. The other £1m plus will pay expenses and provide working capital.
Nanoco (NANO) will receive a £1.8m milestone payment from its unnamed US-listed partner. This is the second of three milestone payments.
Falcon Media House (FAL) has raised a further £200,000 from a convertible loan note issue, taking the total to £3.14m. The conversion price is 2.5p a share.
Treatt (TET) has sold pressed vegetable seed oils supplier Earthoil Plantations for £11m. That takes pro forma net cash to £17.5m. In the six months to March 2018, Treatt increased revenues by 14% to £53.6m and underlying pre-tax profit improved from £4.79m to £5.77m.
Western Selection (WESP) maintained its NAV at 95p a share at the end of the six month period of December 2017. Net debt was £1.13m. A sharp upturn in the value of the stake in Bilby (BILB) and offset declines in other investments. The interim dividend is unchanged at 1.1p a share. The shares go ex-dividend on 8 March.
Gledhow Investments (GDH) has granted six million options to its directors and company secretary. Guy Miller and Brett Miller will receive 2.5 million options each and Geoffrey Melamet receives 1 million. The exercise price is 1p a share. They last for five years and would equate to 10.9% of the enlarged share capital if taken up. The current share price is 1p (0.75p/1.25p). Gledhow had a NAV of £714,452 at the end of September 2017, which is equivalent to 1.45p a share. Since the year end, a gain of £115,000 was achieved on the sale of Coinsilium shares and Gledhow retains a significant stake which in Coinsilium, where the share price is more than three times the level at the end of September 2017. That could add more than £100,000 to the Gledhow NAV but the Coinsilium share price is volatile. Directors and company secretary remuneration was £21,514 last year. There are 4.9 million warrants exercisable at 1.5p each but these expire on 6 March 2017. Bruce Rowan and related parties own 83.37% of the current share capital.
IMC Exploration (IMCP) is continuing with its plans to move to the standard list. IMC has signed heads of agreement with Trove Metals Ltd and this should lead to a joint venture for the project at Avoca, County Wicklow. The current Koza/IMC joint venture has been set aside. IMC has decided to focus on the 12 most prospective of its 15 licences.
Crossword Cybersecurity (CCS) says that its revenues more than doubled to more than £700,000 in 2017. There is customer interest in the Rizikon cyber security product and the General Data Protection Regulations will provide momentum when they come into force in May. Full year figures should be published by the end of April.
Sandal (SAND) says that radiators supplier Pitacs will be a distributor of the Energie MiHome range. Pitacs is launching a new boiler in April and the Energie MiHome thermostats and radiator valves can be sold with this. Pitacs supplies more than 2,000 independent plumbers’ merchants as well as Plumb Nation.
Angelfish Investments (ANGP) says that its investee company Rapid Nutrition plans to gain a quotation in London. Rapid, which is already quoted on the SIX Swiss Exchange, has developed a nutraceutical product range. One of the terms of the £150,000 loan to Rapid was that it should be admitted to the London market by the end of February but this date has been extended to the end of April because of delays in the flotation process. If admission to the market happens by 1 March, then the principal and interest will convert into Rapid shares. If it takes longer than the interest after the end of February is payable in cash.
BWA Group (BWAP) has issued £220,000 of 4% convertible loan notes, with £120,000 taken up by Bath Group, which is owned by BWA chairman Richard Battersby. Bath has taken £70,000 of the loan notes in lieu of cash owed by BWA investee company Mineralfields Group.
Trevor Lloyd has succeeded Philip Kirkham as chairman of National Milk Records (NMR).
Kryptonite 1 (KR1) has changed its name to KR1.
Shield Therapeutics (STX) disappointed the market with phase III patient trial results for the use of Feraccru in the treatment of iron deficiency anaemia in patients with chronic kidney disease that did not meet statistical significance requirements. The results are being analysed in order to identify the reason the trial failed. The share price fell by two-thirds.
Diversified Gas and Oil (DGOC) expects to complete the acquisition of Appalachian producing gas and oil assets from CNX Gas by the end of March. This will cost $85m (£59.9m), while the acquisition of Alliance Petroleum will cost a further $95m (£66.9m). A placing at 80p a share has raised £133.1m. The group’s net working interest production will increase by 173% to 28,133 boed. Management expects annualised EBITDA to be $70m-$75m.
OnTheMarket (OTMP) joined AIM on 9 February having raised £30m at 165p a share. The share price ended the day at 148p. The online property portal operator will make significant investment in its business over the next two years and this will lead it to fall into loss for a couple of years.
Draper Esprit (GROW) has made three new investments. Evonetix is developing the ability for parallel synthesis of DNA on silicon arrays. Droplet Computing has developed technology to decouple applications from the operating system for online and offline use. Kaptivo is developing products to provide whiteboard live streaming and image capture.
Seeing Machines (SEE) has published a trading statement to try to reassure investors following the unexpected departure of its chief executive. Interim revenues will be greater than the A$13.6m reported for last year. The fleet business is gaining revenues internationally. There is growing interest in the driver fatigue technology from Transport for London.
Recruitment software provider Dillistone (DSG) says that its 2017 figures will be much better than expected. This led to a pre-tax profit upgrade from £200,000 to £300,000. This is still a depressed figure due to the investment in GatedTalent and the future of the business depends on the take-up of this new product.
Engineering and technology recruiter Gattaca (GATC) says that weakness in the technology sector will hold back its progress and its chief executive has resigned. Underlying pre-tax profit is set to decline for a second year while the dividend could be halved to 11.5p a share in order for its to be twice covered.
Trading in the shares of BOS Global Holdings (BOS) remains suspended because of the resignation of RFC Ambrian as nominated adviser. BOS still does not have enough working capital so it cannot publish its 2016-17 annual report because the uncertainty over the AIM quotation scuppered a £1.2m placing.
Trading in Kennedy Ventures (KENV) shares will recommence on 12 February following the publication of its annual report. There was a cash outflow of £2.76m in the year to June 2017. The Namibia Tantalite Investment Mine run by African Tantalum has made its fourth shipment of tantalum to its North American customer and there are two more potential customers.
Croma Security Solutions (CSSG) says its first half figures will be much better than those reported for the first half of last year. The EBITDA will improve from £440,000 to more than £1.1m. The company’s largest ever contract was won at the end of the period. There has been an increase in demand for personnel from Croma Vigilant and it has won a five year contract. There is also improved demand for technology supplied by Croma Systems. The interims will be published in February.
BNN Technology (BNN) will lose its AIM quotation on 12 February. A matched bargain facility will be set up. The remaining board hopes to do at least one deal with the two US-listed companies it is in discussions with concerning the acquisition of all or most of BNN’s business.
Strategic Minerals (SML) has extended its access to the Cobre magnetite stockpile in New Mexico until the end of March 2019. This will provide cash to finance other projects.
Origo Partners (OPP) has sold 4.7% of Jinan Heng Yu Environmental Protection Co Ltd for the equivalent of $3m. This is in line with book value but it may take many months for the cash to be received. Origo retains a 7.2% indirect stake. The Origo NAV was $0.09 a share at the end of June 2017.
Alba Mineral Resources (ALBA) has secured additional exploration licences in Greenland. The 466 square km of land is in north west Greenland. Exploration work can be combined with existing licence areas.
Mercantile Ports and Logistics (MPL) says its port in Mumbai will receive its first revenues in a few weeks, following delays in the first customer sorting out its logistics. A further 200 metres is being added to the quay on the east flank of the facility.
Physiomics (PYC) has won a £70,000 contract from a major pharma company. The company’s Virtual Tumour computer model will be used for helping to predict outcomes in pre-clinical testing.
Warpaint London (W7L) says its 2017 results will be in line with expectations suggesting a pre-tax profit of £9.8m and a total dividend of 4p a share.
Polarean Imaging has relaunched plans to come to AIM. It had planned to float at the end of 2017 and the new proposed date is 22 February.
Fryer management services provider Filta Group Holdings (FLTA) says its 2017 revenues were 30% higher at £13.25m. The sale of the refrigeration business should increase the group margin.
TechFinancials Inc (TECH) has pulled out of the sale of non-core operations because the buyer had still not obtained regulatory approval.
Cadmium-free quantum dots producer Nanoco (NANO) has secured a material development and supply agreement with a major US firm that will provide funding to expand Nanoco’s manufacturing site in Runcorn. The deal covers the production of nano-particles for electronic devices. Commercial supply should commence in 2019.
Dukemount Capital (DKE) has secured a two month extension to its option on a property in north west England while talks with a housing association continue. Plans for the refurbishment of the building will be presented to the housing association. Gary Carp has increased his stake from below 3% to 5% in the past fortnight.
Flying Brands Ltd (FBDU) is negotiating to buy a North American medical imaging software developer, which owns FDA-approved medical imaging software that fits well with Flying Brands; own software. The cost of £500,000 would mainly be financed through a share issue.
Avocet Mining (AVM) has completed the sale of Resolute (West Africa) for $5m.
Path Investments (PATH) is still intending to raise cash and move to AIM in the first quarter of 2018. The farm-in deal to acquire 50% of Alfeld-Elze II licence and gas field in Germany is expected to go ahead in the near future.
Chuk Kin Lau has increased his stake in book publisher Quarto Group (QRT) from 20% to 25.6%. Cavendish Asset Management nearly halved its stake to 3.69%.
Health and community care property developer Ashley House (ASH) reported a decline in interim revenues from £10.7m to £7m and the company fell into loss. A second half recovery should mean that full year revenues will be flat at £18.7m but there will be a full year profit of £1.8m. The new joint venture with Morgan Sindall has a pipeline valued at £203m but the revenues of the joint venture will no longer be consolidated in the Ashley House revenues.
Property construction and development company Formation Group (FRM) increased revenues from £29.4m to £37m in the year to August 2017, but there was a swing from a pre-tax profit of £2.16m, thanks to the benefit of the Norwich House profit share agreement, to a loss of £152,000. The cash position has improved significantly. There was net debt of £3m but this became net cash of £4.23m at the end of August 2017. The NAV of £10.2m is four times the market capitalisation.
Gledhow Investments (GDH) increased its NAV from £486,000 to £714,000 in he year to September 2017. There was £103,000 in the bank. Since the balance sheet date, Gledhow has sold 6,500 shares in Coinsilium Ltd (COIN) and this generated a profit on the original investment of £115,000. Gledhow still owns 1.8 million Coinsilium shares. The share price has fallen back from its high but the value of the stake is still around £180,000.
Kryptonite 1 (KR1) has invested $443,000 in 4.72 million tokens in the Bluzelle project. Bluzelle is a scalable database service for decentralised applications. A further €167,000 has been invested in 2.2 million Rock tokens for the Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange (GBX) platform. Kryptonite 1 will become a sponsor for token-based projects listing on the GBX. Kryptonite 1 has also invested $174,000 in 12,800 tokens in the Elastos project, which is developing a virtual, digital smart economic zone.
Botswana-based coal mine developer Minergy, where Hot Rocks Investments (HRIP) invested $260,000 in March 2011, plans to join AIM later this year.
Property investor Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP) has committed to property purchases totalling £20.1m. In the six months to October 2017, revenues were 24% higher at £1.47m but the pre-tax profit dipped from £598,000 to £352,000. That was because there was a £500,000 disposal project in the comparative period. After this period, Ace raised the £4.85m it was seeking from the issue of convertibles.
Healthcare information and clinical support systems provider DXS International (DXSP) continues to be hampered by the lack of NHS spending. In the six months to October 2017, revenues fell from £1.78m to £1.61m and there was a swing from profit to loss. Tax credits more than covered the loss.
Gunsynd (GUN) is assisting analytics software developer FastBase with its proposed AIM flotation in the second quarter and in return it will receive a consultancy fee of 0.75% of the market capitalisation of FastBase after admission. This fee will be paid in FastBase ordinary shares.
IMC Exploration Group (IMCP) has raised £75,000 at 1p a share. Each share comes with a warrant exercised at 2p a share. The cash will be used to finance the feasibility study for PL3850 in Avoca, County Wicklow.
First Sentinel (FSEN) is planning to raise up to £4m from a bond issue. The secured bonds have a 7% coupon and are repayable at a 5% premium on 28 February 2023. These bonds will be traded on NEX. The investment is partly protected by a credit insurance policy provided by Equinox Global. The cash will be invested in Perennial Enterprise, which will use it to fund its invoice discounting business.
Angelfish Investments (ANGP) is loaning £150,000 to YBOO Ltd, which operates a mobile app that enables customers to find the best mobile network deal. The loan is repayable in three years or convertible into 15% of YBOO. The conversion could be triggered by a flotation, fundraising or disposal.
EcoVista (EVTP) has written down its holding in Italian property business Cignella by £482,000, leaving it valued at £152,000.
Karoo Energy (KEP) has reported positive exploration news for its oil and gas assets in Botswana. In the six months to October 2017, the loss increased from £127,000 to £425,000, but most of the increase is due to the costs of trying to gain an AIM quotation. There is £187,000 in cash.
BWA Group (BWAP) says that its investee company Prego International is migrating from Guernsey to Norway and restructuring its shareholder base. Once this is completed there is a plan to apply for a Norwegian matched bargain dealing facility.
Doriemus (DOR) is leaving NEX Exchange and concentrating on the ASX listing it gained on 29 December 2017.
Via Developments (VIA1) has raised £175,000 from a further issue of 7% debenture stock 2020.
Frontier IP (FIPP) investee company MolEndoTech has secured a subsidiary of fully listed Halma as its partner for a test for faecal matter in marine bathing water. Frontier IP has a 19.6% stake in MolEndoTech with a book value of £10,000.
Trading in the shares of Utilitywise (UTW) has been suspended because it has been unable to complete its annual report and accounts by the end of January. The main problem is the change in the revenue recognition policy.
Mike McAuliffe surprised the market by resigning as chief executive of Seeing Machines (SEE) a matter of weeks after £35m was raised. Executive chairman Ken Kroeger will take control.
PCI-PAL (PCIP) has raised £4.95m at 45p a share. The cash will be used to grow the North American operations of the secure contact centre payments provider. There will also be higher marketing spending and investment in other markets.
PCG Entertainment (PCGE) has raised £675,000 from a share issue at 0.2p each. A company related to PCGE chairman Richard Poulden invested £125,000 of this money. This follows a settlement with the former chief executive that cost £286,350.
Veltyco Group (VLTY) will potentially acquire Ruleo Alpenland, which operates the BTTY sportsbook brand, for €6.5m. An exclusivity period lasts until 15 March. This would provide an opportunity to grow in Germany and Austria.
Tracsis (TRCS) has acquired Travel Compensation Services, which provides software for delay repay solutions on the railways, and Delay Repay Sniper, which runs a web portal for rail delay compensation. The combined businesses are profitable.
Fishing Republic (FISH) has raised £1.3m at 10p a share, the original placing price when the fishing tackle retailer floated. The cash will be invested in the e-commerce operations.
ASX-listed Newfield Resources is planning a potential all-share bid for Stellar Diamonds (STEL) which values the diamonds company at 12.7p a share. The offer is likely to be 0.76 of a Newfield share for each Stellar share. Newfield has diamond licences in Sierra Leone. This deal would provide access to the finance to develop the Tongo-Tonguma diamonds project. Newfield is undertaking a placing and non-renounceable rights issue and has loaned Stellar $3m.
Altus Strategies (ALS) has completed the acquisition of gold assets from TSX-V-listed Legend Gold in return for shares. These Altus shares will be distributed to Legend shareholders and this will provide a shareholder base when Altus achieves its TSX-V listing. The deal gives Altus six gold projects in western and southern Mali.
Book publisher Quarto Group (QRT) says that full year profit will be in line with expectations. Net debt has risen by $2.1m to $64m but this is still a £11.8m reduction on the June 2017 figure. The full year figures will be published on 29 March.
Sportech (SPO) has extended the timetable for seeking valid offers for the company.
SQN Asset Finance Income Fund (SQN) was involved in the purchase and onward sale of the business of the former AIM-quoted Snoozebox. The new owner is involved in modular accommodation for the oil and gas sector.
Hydro Hotel, Eastbourne (HYDP) has indicated an improvement in pre-tax profit for the year to October 2016 by raising its dividend payments. The first payment in January will be 7p a share and the second in May will be 14p a share. The total dividend has been increased from 18p a share to 21p a share. Hydro Hotel still has a significant cash pile. Company secretary Sally Gausden has been appointed as a non-executive director.
Netalogue Technologies (NTLP) has replaced its managing director. Richard Condon will become a non-executive director and he will be replaced in the role by development director Andrew Robathan. This follows a review of the company’s strategy and Netalogue will further develop its B2B functionality, which will help it compete against rivals and gain global strategic partners.
Trading commenced in property developer Formation Group (FRM) shares on ISDX on 15 December, although the AIM quotation will continue for the time being.
Gledhow Investments (GDH) made a number of new investments last year but disposals meant that there was still cash of £258,000 at the end of September 2016. The existing investments include a €40,000 convertible loan to Netherlands-based electric scooter developer AppScooter and investments in placings in virtual reality content developer EVR Holdings and Management Resource Solutions, which has run into financial difficulties. The NAV is £452,000, which is slightly higher than the market capitalisation based on the mid price of 0.75p (0.5p/1p) a share.
Black Sea Property (BSP) has signed a non-binding letter of interest to acquire Varna Project Investment, which owns six, almost complete, apartments and development land on the Black Sea coast. The acquisition will cost €130,000 and the assumption of debt of €1.02m – at an interest charge of 5% a year. The apartments will be marketed next May and the land should be sold within 18 months. The loan is repayable on 1 July 2020. The deal could be completed by the end of March.
Karoo Energy (KEP) has generated positive results from exploration on its production licences in the Gemsbok Basin in Botswana. Further exploration, including additional wells and extending the gravity survey data, will be undertaken in 2017.
It was a mixed first half for defence equipment and services supplier Cohort (CHRT) but the second half is expected to be better. Cohort reported a loss but there was a small improvement in underlying pre-tax profit from £3.51m to £3.86m on flat revenues. The mix of revenues has changed with acquisition contributions offset by lower contributions from SCS, which is being absorbed into two other divisions. The order book is worth £129.6m. Full year profit is expected to improve from £12m to £14.3m but this is down to acquisitions and earnings per share will dip slightly. Dividends should still be increased with a total of 7p a share forecast.
Shell company SigmaRoc (SRC) has secured the acquisition of Ronez Ltd from LafargeHolcim Group for £45m. SigmaRoc chief executive Max Vermorken should know the business because he was a consultant to LafargeHolcim until recently. Ronez owns two quarries and other construction materials operations in Jersey and Guernsey. In 2015, these operations made an operating profit of £4.32m on revenues of £26.3m. Ronez was acquired, as part of Aggregate Industries, by Holcim back in 2005. The markets are limited and market share is already high. Further acquisitions are planned as part of the buy and build strategy. There will be a 104-for-one share consolidation and £40m will be raised at 40p a share, while a further £10m will come from a convertible loan. When the company’s original assets were sold SigmaRoc raised £500,000 at the equivalent of 25p (0.24p pre-consolidation) a share. A listing on the Channel Islands Stock Exchange is planned following the reverse takeover.
Property management services provider HML Holdings (HMLH) is raising £2m at 37p a share and this will help to finance three potential acquisitions. These acquisitions could cost a total of £4.4m but there will be some deferred consideration. Four acquisitions have already been made this year and there are 62,000 homes under management. Interim pre-tax profit improved from £810,00 to £920,000. Net debt was £1.4m at the end of September 2016. The shares ae being issued at ten times prospective earnings.
Ultrasound training equipment developer Medaphor (MED) appears to have settled its patent dispute in the US. The agreement has yet to be put in writing but after this happens the lawsuit will be dismissed. Medaphor says that it will pay cash in settlement but it has enough in the bank to cover this. There was £3.5m in the ban at the end of June 2016 but this is likely to be less than £3m now.
A lack of insolvencies continues to hamper the profitability of Begbies Traynor (BEG). Interim revenues dipped from £25.5m to £24.5m but underlying pre-tax profit was flat at £2.5m because of a higher contribution from the property services side of the business – partly due to additional contributions from acquisitions. The interim dividend is unchanged at 0.6p a share. Bank facilities have been extended until 2021 and this will reduce the interest charge. Further add-on acquisitions are planned.
The news does not get any better at Redcentric (RCN). There has been an overstatement of net assets of £20.8m, which relates to overstated profit. Net debt was £34.4m at the end of September 2016, although that is lower than average monthly levels. Banking covenants are being waived but, unsurprisingly, there will be no dividend. Redcentric is attempting to improve the running of its finances and interim results are promised before the end of the year slimming tablets.
Veltyco (VLTY) says that it will beat the profit expectation of €1.38m for 2016. This helps to make the 2017 profit forecast of €3.17m appear to be more attainable. Veltyco’s business is generating players for online gaming and option trading websites.
First half trading has been tough for property adviser Fletcher King (FLK) but it is maintaining its interim dividend at 1p a share. Property prices have fallen by 5%-10% and transaction volumes are lower. There was some turmoil in the property market after the EU referendum, with some transactions falling through, but demand recovered after a few weeks. In the six months to October 2016, revenues fell from £2.96m to £1.68m, while pre-tax profit, excluding investment gains, fell from £597,000 to £163,000. There will be no one-off gains this year but there could be next year. Net cash was £2.64m. The decline in the pound has attracted foreign buyers, although uncertainty remains.
Hair care and tanning products supplier InnovaDerma (IDP) has raised £800,000 at 110p a share to help fund higher stock levels. This follows a placing earlier in the month which raised £540,000 at 70p a share. Andrew Hore
Carduus Housing (CHPB/CHP2) has discovered that £1.43m of its cash has been paid to Carduus Finance Ltd and £875,000 to a third party. It is estimated that £1.675m of this cash did not conform to budgeted spending or the company’s investment strategy. Carduus Finance has subsequently sold its stake in Carduus Housing for £1. Pankaj Rajani owns 75% and Beaufort Securities 25%. Peterhouse has resigned as corporate adviser and Brian Gilmour, Drew Oswald and Luke Cairns have resigned as directors. Pankaj Rajani and Darren Edmonston have joined the Carduus board. Gilmour is one of the main shareholders in Carduus Ltd, the holding company for Carduus Finance. On 2 February 2016, in his capacity as sole director, he made a solvency statement for Carduus Ltd. Stuart Black who was a director of ISDX-quoted Etaireia Investments is a former director of Carduus Ltd and Carduus Finance. When Black was on the Etaireia board it claimed it had planning permission for a site in Scotland but this proved to be untrue. Carduus Housing joined ISDX on 30 September 2015 when £3.5m of 6.5% unsecured bonds were admitted to trading. It has subsequently raised £3.5m from the issue of 6.25% unsecured bonds. Trading in the bonds remains suspended pending clarification of its financial position. The strategy is to invest in affordable housing, with 37 properties currently owned, but this may be changed. There is still £1.9m in the bank. The company will try to recover the cash that has been paid out for reasons outside the remit of the corporate strategy. Carduus Housing may need to raise additional cash by 2020 in order to redeem the bonds.
Secured Property Developments (SPD) continues to seek a suitable residential development project and it has widened the scope of its search to outside of the M25. A property in Scarborough has been sold for £327,500 – it was in the books for £300,000 – and no other investment properties are owned. The NAV was £758,000 at the end of 2015. There should be more than £700,000 in cash after the disposal. At 19.5p (18p/21p) a share, Secured Property is valued at £400,000.
Leni Gas Cuba (CUBA) is linking up with Commercial Funded Solar Ltd (CFS) in order to install and operate renewable energy assets in Cuba. CFS was established as a limited company in February 2015. The directors include Dmitry Gavrilov, who joined the board in March 2016 and is a 10% shareholder, and Timothy Dobson, who owns 80% of the company. Cuba wants to produce 24% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. The funding for any projects will come from external investors. The income related to developing and installing the plant will be shared 50/50 while Leni Gas Cuba will receive 25% of the revenues from operational contracts. At 1.35p (1.2p/1.5p) a share, Leni Gas Cuba is valued at £6.7m.
Brett Miller has resigned as a director of Gledhow Investments (GDH), although he remains company secretary, and has sold his 2.2 million shares at 2.2472p each – a large premium to the market price. At 1p (0.75p/1.25p) a share, Gledhow is valued at £490,000. On 11 May, 170,000 shares were traded at 1.15p each. Peterhouse employee Guy Miller has joined the board. He owns 264,700 shares.
Online retailer of musical instruments Gear4music (G4M) more than doubled its underlying operating profit in the year to February 2016. Revenues increased from £24.2m to £35.5m, while underlying operating profit excluding flotation cots jumped from £376,000 to £895,000. There was a small pre-tax profit after interest charges. The cash raised in the flotation means that these interest charges will be significantly reduced this year. Net cash was £2.6m even after investing in higher inventories. The product range is being expanded by 20% each year. Instead of a London showroom, the company is planning to open up European distribution hubs. There is a chance of a dividend for this financial year.
AdEPT Telecom (ADT) is acquiring managed IT and telephony services provider Comms Group UK for £3.5m plus surplus cash. The management is remaining with the business which has long-term relationships with small business customers. The business made an operating profit of £500,000 in the year to March 2015 and that is estimated to have risen to £800,000 in 2015-16, so the deal should be immediately earnings enhancing. Further information on AdEPT can be found at http://www.hubinvest.com/AIMPDFMay2016_80.pdf.
Digital performance marketing services provider XLMedia (XLM) says current trading remains strong and it still has organic growth opportunities on top of the potential for consolidation. The strategic review has been completed and XLMedia still believes that it should remain on AIM. The company will continue to seek opportunities in new territories and sectors as well as further developing its technology.
Marble quarry business Fox Marble (FOX) has raised £2m at 10p a share and the directors have agreed to take their salaries in shares at the market price. The cash will help to finish the Kosovo factory where cut and polished marble slabs should be produced by the summer.
MediaZest (MDZ) has raised £250,000 through a share issue at 0.1p each and it has capitalised a loan of £50,000 at 0.15p a share. The audio visual company says that it made its best ever performance in the year to March 2016. The cash will help to finance working capital for projects with HMV, Adidas and Diesel. MediaZest is trying to build a recurring revenue base.
Telecoms services provider Toople (TOOP) made strong start to trading on the standard list despite the limited nature of its current business. One man who will be pleased to see the shares go to a premium is chief executive Andrew Hollingworth, who acquired his 26% stake for less than £20,000 when the company was formed on 2 March 2016and it is currently worth more than £2m. His shares were issued at 0.0667p each compared with the placing price of 8p a share and the current share price of 8.88p. Hollingworth has an annual salary of £120,000 –Toople will have to grow to generate revenues that high – and seven weeks holiday entitlement each year. Former Coms boss David Brieth sold the main operating businesses to the group for 39 million shares and he is paid £120,000 a year, which is effectively for a three day week.
In the six months to March 2016, trickle ventilator and window components manufacturer Titon (TON) reported a dip in profit from £792,000 to £735,000 on flat revenues of £10.9m. That was due to weak Korean trading as competition increased. Net cash was £2.46m at the end of March 2016.
Engineering and environmental consultancy Waterman Group (WTM) says that revenues were 10% ahead in the first nine months of this financial year and is on course for a full year profit of £3.3m in the year to June 2016. Net cash will be better than expected. Waterman wants to improve its operating margin from 3.3% in 2014-15 to around 6% in 2018-19.
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Markets operator WMC Retail Partners (WMC) reported a sharp fall in revenues and profit in 2015. That was due to the loss of the Old Spitalfields Market contract in January 2015. Revenues were reduced from £6.08m to £4.31m, while pre-tax profit dived from £369,000 to £13,000. That profit was after fair value movements in asset values of £165,000, compared with £190,000 the year before. There was £196,000 in the bank at the end of 2015, although there are also borrowings. At 19.5p a share, WMC is valued at £1.2m, whereas the NAV was £3.58m at the end of 2015.
Brewer and pubs operator Adnams (ADP) says that first quarter operating profit was slightly ahead of expectations thanks to strong sales of own-brand beer and gin. Distillery capacity has been trebled and £7m is being invested to increase brewing capacity. A six year sponsorship of the University Boat Races has begun and increased marketing spending will hold back profit. At £99.50 a share, Adnams is valued at £28.4m. There have been deals at above this price in recent days.
Leni Gas Cuba (CUBA) is in talks to reverse into a TSX Venture market shell that until recently was going to buy Mongolian mining assets. Knowlton Capital Inc (TSX-V:KWC H) will provide access to North American investors but the enlarged group wants to retain the ISDX quotation. An all share bid by Knowlton, whose shares are currently suspended, for Leni Gas Cuba is anticipated but prior to this the Knowlton share capital will be consolidated which will give shareholders 0.7825 of a share for each share currently owned. One Knowlton share will be issued for every 2.5 Leni Gas Cuba shares. Leni Gas Cuba shareholders will own 84.4% of the enlarged group although they will be contributing a higher percentage of the group cash and assets. The Leni Gas Cuba share price is 1.15p, which is double the low in March but a fraction of the 5p a share flotation price, valuing the company at £5.7m, which is above pro forma NAV.
Ace Liberty & Stone (ALSP) has announced an interim dividend of 0.033p a share – an increase of 10% on the previous year. The ex-dividend date is 12 May. An additional 13.3 million shares have been issued at 3p each to pay for a property acquired from non-executive director Dr Anthony Ghorayeb. At 4p a share, which is the highest the share price has been, Ace is valued at £39.3m.
Investment company Gledhow Investments (GDH) reported a decline in NAV from £546,000 to £414,000 in the 12 months to March 2016 as the value of resources investments fell. During the period, a €40,000 investment was made in Dutch electric scooter developer Bolt Mobility BV. There was still £190,000 left in the bank at the end of March 2016. At 0.75p a share, Gledhow is valued at £368,000.
Valiant Investments (VALP) has set up a mobile app development business called Flamethrower and it retains an 83.33% interest. Valiant also has a portfolio of resources and green energy investments but it currently has a small net deficit.
Cyber security technology commercialisation Crossword Cybersecurity (CCS) reported initial revenues of £21,000 in 2015. The loss increased from £239,000 to £755,000. There was £1.23m in the bank at the end of 2015.
House broker Stockdale expects a slump in profit reported by smoke alarms supplier Sprue Aegis (SPRP) from £12.8m – before £5.5m battery warranty provision – to £2.1m in the year to December 2016. This is due to the revelation about unreliable batteries and poor trading in France and Germany. These are important potential markets. In Germany, 10 million homes will have to have a smoke alarm by the end of 2017. Despite being uncovered, the dividend is expected to be maintained at 8p a share. Net cash was £22.4m at the end of 2015.
Arian Silver Corp (AGQ) has raised £700,000 at 1p a unit – one share and 0.5 of a warrant to subscribe for a share at 1.5p (expiring on 28 April 2019). The current share price is 1.13p. The cash will be used to push ahead with the exploration of mining concessions in Mexico, particularly those relating to the Tierra Neuva Mineria option assets. Other projects are also being assessed.
Tekcapital (TEK) has acquired assets from Vortechs Group Inc, an executive search firm specialising in technology transfer professionals. This will add to the range of services that Tekcapital can offer. Tekcapital has paid $100,000 and 577,868 shares at 47.5p each. The current employees will be retained. The business made a small loss on revenues of $351,000 last year. In the year to November 2015, Tekcapital lost $1.46m.
Highland Natural Resources (HNR) has raised £519,000 at 18p a share. This cash will be used to invest in oil and gas assets and technology and it should cover overheads until the end of 2017. Research into the company’s US oil and gas assets suggests that there could be uranium assets. The first commercial test of the DT Ultravert oilfield technology are set for June in Colorado.
Global Resources Investment Trust (GRIT) continues to trade at a substantial discount to NAV. The share price is 6.5p a share, whereas the NAV was 25.7p a share at the end of April. That figure is after writing down the value of a number of unquoted resources shares. GRIT recently sold its stake in NuLegacy Gold for £2.2m – more than double book value. The main concern is that the largest holder of the company’s cumulative unsecured loan stock has requested repayment because a covenant has been breached. The other two holders are supporting the company but GRIT does not have the cash to redeem the loan stock of the largest holder. Further disposals should enable this largest chunk of the loan stock to be repaid by the autumn.
Microbiological technologies supplier Bioquell (BQE) is returning £42.7m to shareholders via a tender offer for 50% of the share capital that is likely to be at 200p a share. The formal sale process for the business continues. There was £47.6m in the bank at the end of 2015, following the disposal of TRaC Global. Continuing operations reported flat revenues of £26.9m, while Bioquell swung from loss to profit.
North Midland Construction (NMD) has appointed SPARK as its financial adviser and Si Capital as its broker. This could mark a review of strategy or even a potential move to AIM.
Small Cap Awards 2016 nominations
IPO of the Year Bilby ; Curtis Banks; Gear4music; Premier Technical Services Group; Stride Gaming
Company of the Year Bioventix; Crawshaw; James Cropper; Trakm8
Impact Company of the Year Ashley House; Capital for Colleagues; Good Energy Group; Menhaden Capital; V22
Executive Director of the Year Nick Taylor – Waterman Group; John McArthur – Tracsis; David Cicurel – Judges Scientific; Stephen O’Hara – OptiBiotix Health
Transaction of the Year 1pm acquisition of Academy Leasing; AdEPT Telecom acquisition of Centrix; Scientific Digital Imaging acquisition of Sentek; Venn Life Sciences acquisition of Kinesis Pharma
Analyst of the Year Mike Allen – Zeus Capital; Charles Hall – Peel Hunt; Matt Butlin – Allenby Capital; Eric Burns – WH Ireland
Journalist of the Year Paul Scott – Stockopedia; Simon Thompson – Investors Chronicle; Smit Berry – The Small Company Sharewatch
Advisor of the Year FinnCap; Hybridan; Peterhouse; Zeus Capital
Fund Manager of the Year Conor McCarthy – MFM Techinvest Special Situations; Gervais Williams – Miton UK Smaller Companies; Ken Wotton – Wood Street Microcap Investment; Paul Spencer – Franklin UK Smaller Companies
Alternative Financing Deal of the Year Funding Circle SM Income Fund – IPO; Seedrs for Chapel Down – Curious Drinks; Capital For Colleagues – institutional and crowd placing; TRC Contracts by ArchOver – record working capital loan
Asia-focused investment company DKG Capital (DKGP) is acquiring a 30% stake in Hong Kong-based Ronix Resource Co, which provides concierge VIP services for the travel and leisure sector, for £600,000 in cash and shares. Ronix is completing the acquisition of online betting and gaming business Global Media Ltd, which has an agreement with a Malaysian firm for the referral of VIP customers as well as jointly developing an online gaming services. DKG plans to raise £200,000 from a placing early in 2016. At 1.75p (1.5p/2p) a share, DKG is valued at £900,000.
Carduus Housing (CHP2) is acquiring 15 properties for £1.19m and £2.5m of 6.25% bonds 2020 have been admitted to ISDX. The freehold properties being acquired are two/three bedroom homes in southern Glasgow. The first seven properties have been bought and the others will be acquired in January. The homes will be rented out and managed by a housing association.
Investment company Gledhow Investments (GDH) has been hit by the decline in the value of its investments in resources companies. No new investments were made last year. The NAV fell from £626,000 to £497,000, including cash of £247,000, at the end of September 2015. At 0.75p (0.5p/1p) a share, Gledhow is valued at £370,000.
Investment company Lombard Capital (LCAP) has a new major shareholder. Mark Jackson has sold his 28.8% stake in Lombard at 10p a share to David Grierson. That is a large premium to the market price of 6p (5p/7p) a share.
Molecular diagnostics company Premaitha Health (NIPT) has secured a £5m loans and warrants investment from Thermo Fisher. Premaitha’s man product is the IONA test, which is used to screen the foetus to assess if there are any genetic disorders. Thermo Fisher supplies the DNA sequencing instruments used to assess the IONA pre-natal test. European countries are starting to offer reimbursement for the use of the test. The first country is Switzerland. The additional cash will be used to further develop the test. Premaitha had £6.6m in the bank at the end of September 2015. The Thermo Fisher deal provides backing for Premaitha’s IP litigation with Illumina, which could drag on for some time.
Tungsten Corp (TUNG) is selling its bank to concentrate on its trade finance operations. Tungsten will receive £30m for the bank, which is in the books for £25.4m. It could take up to 12 months to complete the disposal. Tungsten remains heavily loss-making and there was £15.9m in the bank at the end of October 2015 – excluding the bank. Even with cost savings, cash could be running low by the time the money comes in for the bank.
Fit-out and projects contractor Styles & Wood (STY) has been retained by TSB as contractor for branch refurbishment after the bank reduced the number of contractors in the framework agreement from five to two. This should generate at least £10m a year for Styles & Wood over the next five years. Group revenues were £97m in 2014. Even though the first half profit was small, house broker Shore forecasts 2015 earnings per share of 29.5p, rising to 37.2p a share in 2016. The balance sheet has been strengthened following a refinancing of Styles’ preference shares earlier this year. Net debt, including preference shares, was £6.42m at the end of June 2015 and cash flow should be strong from now on.
Business information provider Progressive Digital Media Group (PRO) intends to acquire healthcare business information provider GlobalData Holding and sell its non-core print assets to the owners of the GlobalData. An all-share deal is likely to leave the sellers with just over one-third of the enlarged group. Progressive will have three legs: healthcare, consumer and technology. In July, Progressive bought information assets from Informa for £25m.
NWF Group (NWF) says that trading is in line with expectations and net debt continues to be reduced. Lower milk prices continue to hamper the feeds division, while the food distribution division used overflow capacity and the fuels distribution division did better than expected in the summer months – although the warm winter could hold back second half progress. The interims will be published on 2 February.
Online video content revenues generator Rightster (RSTR) is raising £10m at 5p a share – a premium to the market price. The cash will help to finance the restructuring of the business and cover continuing losses. Rightster wants to focus on enterprise customers and create targeted channels to attract certain consumer groupings. Investment in production teams and other specialists will be required. The placing is being backed by Woodford and Invesco. The number of shares in issue will be increased by nearly 60%. Ashley Mackenzie, a founder of one of the companies acquired by the group, took on the role of chief executive in November.
Thor Mining (THR) has agreed to sell its gold assets in Australia to PC Gold for A$3.5m. The deal includes the Spring Hill and Dundas gold projects. There is an initial deposit of A$150,000 with the rest of the first tranche of A$2m to acquire a 60% stake in the projects due early next year, followed by a further A$1.5m within 12 months to acquire the rest. There are also royalty payments of A$6/ounce unless the gold selling price goes above A$1,500/ounce when the payment goes up to A$14/ounce. The initial cash will pay off A$1.2m loan taken out to acquire the rest of Spring Hill. The rest of the cash will be invested in the company’s tungsten projects in Australia and the US.
Sunrise Resources (SRES) has signed a 25 year lease agreement with EP Minerals for its County Line diatomite project in Nevada. Sunrise will not have to spend any more of its own money developing the project. This project could be up and running and generating a royalty stream for Sunrise within 18 months. There is an initial payment of $450,000 in 18 months and then minimum royalty payments each year. Sunrise has acquired a second industrial minerals project in Nevada. The Pozz Ash project could be a source of natural pozzolan, which is an alternative additive to cement.
Standard list company General Industries (GNI) is paying £1.2m for Murja from founders Richard Murphy and Christopher Jack. Murja is a treasury management consultancy and the deal has been passed by the FCA. When the acquisition is completed Richard Murphy will become an executive director. General Industries has already acquired affordable housing adviser Altair Consultancy & Advisory Services and this should provide additional client for Murja. An interim dividend of 0.22p a share is being paid on 21 December.
Standard list shell Opera Investments (OPRA) continues to try and raise cash to enable it to complete the acquisition of SoloPower Systems but it is taking longer than expected. The original announcement of heads of terms was on 20 July and trading in the shares was suspended. US-based SoloPower manufactures solar photovoltaic cells and modules from thin-film copper, indium, gallium and selenium materials and its current owner is Hudson Clean Energy Partners. SoloPower believes that its thin film solar products are cheaper to produce and install than those of its competitors. The deal is valued at $220m based on an all share acquisition at 28p a share. The plan is to raise at least $40m. An initial £1.06m net was raised at 10p a share last April. Because Opera is not on AIM there is no limit on the time that the shares can be suspended.