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Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 10 June 2019

NEX EXCHANGE

Proton Partners International Ltd (PPI) has asked Woodford Investment Management to subscribe for £25m worth of shares at 176p a share. This is part of an agreement with Woodford that was outlined in the prospectus and it comes at a time when the fund manager is coming under pressure for poor performance and it has closed redemptions from one of its funds. The cash will pay off a loan and provide working capital.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) is making a £155,000 investment in Tasmania Energy Metals and the two companies will evaluate whether they should develop an integrated facility for the treatment of metal concentrate. NQ also has an exclusivity period until the end of July during which to decide whether to acquire Tasmania’s assets.

Sativa Investments (SATI) has signed an offtake agreement with a Swiss supplier of cannabis oil. This will be used to manufacture cannabidiol products.

AfriAg Global (AFRI) has invested £300,000 in Apollon Formularies for a 0.71% stake. Apollon plans to open a licenced retail medicinal cannabis dispensary and processing facility in Jamaica by the end of the month.

Newbury Racecourse (NYR) says that it is unlikely to return to paying dividends or return capital to shareholders before 2022 at the earliest. There is uncertainty about future revenue streams from fixed-odds betting terminals and how this could impact UK betting. It could reduce prize money levels. The onsite hotel has increased revenues by 15% so far this year.

Trading in shares of Equatorial Mining (EM.P) has been suspended ahead of publishing accounts. They should be published at the time of the general meeting to gain approval of the acquisition of Rwanda-based miner and explorer Eastinco. A £1.2m fundraising is also planned.

Altona Energy (ANR) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Shaanxi Qianyan Vanadium and Magnesium Mining, which owns a vanadium mine in China. The plan is to forma joint venture where Altona will be the controlling shareholder. Due diligence will take up to six months and there will be a JORC-compliant mineral resource classification report. The estimated reserve is 190,000 tonnes of vanadium.

Formation Group (FRM) has secured a £10m subscription at 7.71p a share through the acquisition of Zandra Holdings, whose asset is £10m in cash. This takes the Kennedy Private Trust stake in Formation to 89.99%. A £10m loan facility ahs also been secured.

The Little Bear mine area has been transferred to Panther Metals (PALM) and the Little Bear vein is a high priority drill target in order to see if the bonanza grade gold mineralisation still exists at depth. Panther has also applied for a licence over the Annaburroo gold project in Northern Territory, Australia.

Walls and Futures REIT (WAFR) has secured a £600,000 secured revolving credit facility and spent £465,000 on a bungalow in Didcot to be redeveloped into a home providing specialist support for four adults.

Valiant Investments (VALP) is raising £263,000 at 1.5p a share and it is changing its name to Eurocann International as an indication of the change in strategy to investment in the medicinal cannabis sector. Jeremy Rose will become chief executive and he has a number of directorships including of Speakeasy Cannabis.  Burns Singh Tennent-Bhohi will become a non-executive.

EcoVista (EVTP) had £419,000 in cash at the end of February 2019 and it is seeking further investment. The interim loss declined from £238,000 to £202,000. Net assets were £1.19m at the end of February 2019.

Share trading in Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has been suspended because it has not published its 2018 accounts.

AIM  

The smart machines division of Vianet (VNET) is going to be the source of profit growth for the coming years. Profit can be improved by converting the vending machines that came with the Vendman acquisition to Vianet’s contactless technology, as well as winning new business. The smart zones pub dispensing technology division should be able to maintain its contribution with lower UK profit due to pub closures being offset by an improved performance in the US. Pre-tax profit is expected to improve from £2.7m to £2.9m, although earnings per share will be hit by a higher tax charge.

Interim revenues at smart home devices supplier LightwaveRF (LWRF) increased 120% to £2.5m, although there was still a pre-tax loss of £1.35m.  New distribution channels are helping to accelerate growth in revenues. The company could move into profit next year

Bad weather in the US has hampered the progress of Somero Enterprises (SOM) and led to forecast downgrades. Demand for concrete levelling equipment is normally stronger in the spring. This year’s earnings have been cut by 12% and next year by 11%. This will also reduce the potential dividend. The forecast 2019 normal dividend plus payout of surplus cash has been cut from 27.8 cents a share to 19.8 cents a share.

Waste-to-energy technology developer EQTEC (EQT) is acquiring a 19.99% stake in North Fork Community Power, a biomass gasification power project in California. EQTEC will supply $2.5m worth of equipment from its Newry site in return for the stake. It also expects to generate €2.2m from selling additional equipment.

Microsaic Systems (MSYS) has signed a distribution agreement for the Microsaic 4500 MID MS detector with CM Corporation for the South Korean market.

A shareholder owning a 17.2% stake in Rurelec (RUR) intends to propose an AGM resolution for the appointment of Gordon Fisher as a director. He is a former boss of a freight forwarding and customs brokerage. The electricity generator reduced its pre-tax loss from £5.8m to £600,000 in 2018, mainly due to lower overheads, exchange gains and a disposal gain. NAV is 4.4p a share, which is more than four times the share price.

Driver (DRV) had already said that its interims would be disappointing and pre-tax profit slumped from £2.11m to £762,000. The Middle East and Asia Pacific were tough markets with lower contributions. The expert witness operations made a reduced contribution. A 0.5p a share interim dividend was announced, and the ex-dividend date is 19 September. The company is also buying back shares in order to put a floor under the share price.

Chemicals-focused shell Wilmcote Holdings (WCH) is in exclusive discussions with Arclin Inc for a potential acquisition. Trading in the shares has been suspended.

Acquisitions consultancy K3 Capital (K3C) has confirmed that trading is in line with previous guidance and EBITDA is at the upper end of the range of £4.5m to £5m. An 80% payout would mean a reduction in dividend from 11.2p a share to 7.2p a share.

Osirium Technologies (OSI) has won a contract with a European telecoms services provider. The three year contract covers cyber security software and services.

MAIN MARKET 

A strong first half has continued into the second half trading for automotive information publisher Haynes Publishing (HYNS) and pre-tax profit for the year to May 2019 is expected to exceed expectations by 10%. This suggests pre-tax profit of around £2m. The results will be announced on 12 September.

Caffyns (CFYN) reported a small improvement in underlying pre-tax profit to £1.45m in the year to March 2019. New car sales were 10% lower, which is more than three times the market decline. However, there was growth in used car sales and aftersales revenues.

Positive news from Argo Blockchain (ARB) where results for May were well ahead of the company’s budgets. New cryptomining hardware has started contributing faster than expected and rising cryptocurrency prices have improved mining yields. A further £2.85m is being invested in equipment. There was £685,000 generated in May, based on a bitcoin price of $8,575, while cash operating costs were £280,000. Second quarter figures will be better than expected. If the bitcoin price is maintained, then there will be £2.85m of crypto assets at the end of the second quarter.

BigDish (DISH) has raised £2.1m at 7.2p a share and this should be enough cash for the restaurant platform until 2021. The UK rollout will be accelerated.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) is acquiring the Minto mine from Capstone Mining. Pembridge will pay up to $20m out of future cash flows. Commercial production could recommence before the end of the year. A $10m loan has been secured.

Symphony International Holdings (SIHL) has made an investment in Soothe Healthcare, which manufactures feminine hygiene products under the Paree and Pariz brands.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 25 June 2018

NEX EXCHANGE   

Shareholders have agreed to the proposed broadening of investing policy for Sativa Investments (SATI) and the first acquisition under the new policy is George Botanicals. Sativa paid £415,000 in cash and shares for the UK-based wholesaler and distributor of cannaboid medicinal products, including CBD oil. The company is being acquired from the interests of Sativa chief executive Geremy Thomas.

Gas and electricity supplier Good Energy (GOOD) says that this year’s results will be weighted towards the first half because of the cold weather earlier in 2018. There will also be increased investment in the sales team and a digital app in the second half. Good supplies more than 70,000 homes and less than 1% of the business market.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) nearly doubled its revenues to $8.2m in 2017. There is $257,000 in the bank.

Pelican House Mining (PHM) has bought a 15% stake Mighty Oak Explorations, which has three licences to explore for cobalt and two to explore for lithium in Uganda.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) says the commissioning of plant for the Hellyer project is on course for August. The mine is a few months away from production.

Block Commodities (BLOC) has raised £165,000 at 0.035p a share. The cash will help to finance the launch of a pilot blockchain project in Uganda.

AIM   

Alliance Pharma (APH) is acquiring the marketing rights to Nizoral, an anti-dandruff shampoo brand in Asia Pacific, for £60m. Alliance raised £34m at 91p a share. The rights being acquired, which cover 15 countries, generated net sales of £18.5m in 2017. They would have generated pro forma EBITDA of £7.1m.

Shoe retailer Footasylum (FOOT) has followed up the announcement of its exit from the FTSE AIM 100 index with a set of results that mean it is likely to be a long time before it gets back in the AIM 100. Peel Hunt has reduced its 2018-19 pre-tax profit forecast by one-quarter to £5.3m. Footasylum has been hit by discounting and the weak consumer market. Rental costs are higher than expected.

Social housing software and services provider Castleton Technology (CTP) continues to grow sales to new and existing customers. Two-fifths of customers take more than one product. Full year revenues were 15% ahead at £23.3m with organic growth of 13%. Net debt was 30% lower at £6.3m. There is a contracted backlog of £26.8m.

Frontier IP (FIPP) has taken a 24% stake in Cambridge Material Testing, which is developing software and hardware to measure material characteristics of metal components. The non-destructive tests are quick and require small samples.

Northbridge Industrial Services (NBI) has raised £2.5m at 125p a share. Northbridge will use £1.05m to pay the deferred consideration for the Tasman acquisition. This was originally due in January 2016 and has been incurring an annual interest charge of 8%. The rest of the cash will be invested in rental equipment as demand recovers. Gearing will fall below 20%

Rose Petroleum (ROSE) has published a maiden contingent resource for its interests in the Paradox Basin, Utah. The competent persons report shows a net 2C contingent resources of 12.3mmboe with gas accounting for nearly one-quarter of that resource. A post-tax NPV of $86.9m has been estimated. This assumes a 75% success rate for wells drilled and a recovery of up to 550,000 barrels per well. Each horizontal well is expected to cost $7m. These estimates are based on less than one-quarter of Rose’s acreage.

Myanmar-focused social media platform operator MySQUAR Ltd (MYSQ) is acquiring MyPay Myanmar for £1m in cash and 72.5 million shares issued at 1.38p each. An issue of unsecured convertible bonds has raised £2.22m. Bid talks have been terminated.

Touchstone Exploration Inc (TXP) has extended its credit facility for a further year. The $15m facility lasts until November 2022. The existing oil and gas assets in Trinidad are generating cash and this is also helping to fund the drilling of 12 wells this year. Next year, an exploration well will be drilled on the Ortoire block.

Michael Rowan is switching from chairman to chief executive at Active Energy Group (AEG) and the previous chief executive will focus on developing the forest management operations in North America and CoalSwitch in Poland.

Trading in the shares of URA Holdings (URA) has been suspended because it has not completed a reverse takeover. URA has signed heads of agreement to acquire Entertainment AI Ltd, which has developed tagging technology that enables viewers of video clips to purchase items in the video. It also owns the GTChannel, which runs automotive-related channels across YouTube generating revenues from advertising.

Project management services provider Progility (PGY) plans to cancel its AIM quotation. Praxis, which owns 64.75% of the company is backing the move. There is total support from shareholders owning more than 81% of the company so the cancellation is a foregone conclusion. Praxis is offering 55p a share for shares it does not own.

N4 Pharma (N4P) is making good progress with its therapeutic nanoparticle platform Nuvec. There should be results from studies in he fourth quarter. N4 is conducting studies to identify human cell types that are most responsive to Nuvec. The Sildenafil MR Viagra reformulation commenced a proof-of-concept trial in April and the results are expected in August.

Uvenco UK (UVEN) continues to hold discussions with its main creditor following the placing of its vending machine subsidiaries in administration. Those assets were sold for £1.8m and Uvenco is left with net debt of £1.6m.

Industrial equipment distributor Slingsby (HC) (SLNG) says that a stronger April and May means that sales are 1%lower in the first five months of the year. Compared to a 6% shortfall in the first quarter. Pre-tax profit is also slightly lower. Net debt was £1.4m at the end of May 2018.

Duke Royalty Ltd (DUKE) has increased its interim dividend by 17% to 0.7p a share. The dividend will be paid on 12 July.

RA International Group Ltd provides services to remote locations and it wants to raise £18.8m when it joins AIM. In 2017, RA generated revenues of $53.3m and profit of $13.7m, up from $5m the previous year.

MAIN MARKET    

Oil and gas explorer Upland Resources Ltd (UPL) has completed a placing raising £3m at 2.5p a share. The cash will help to fund the drilling of a well at Wick in the UK and finance potential ventures in Sarawak and North Africa.

Beauty and personal care products supplier InnovaDerma (IDP) continues to find trading tough and it will report a full year pre-tax profit that is £650,000 lower than expected. Revenues will increase from £8.9m to £11m. finnCap had forecast a 2017-18 pre-tax profit of £2.4m on revenues of £13.8m following the 2016-17 full year figures. Last October, InnovaDerma raised £4.4m at 276p a share and that has helped to shore up the balance sheet.

Stewart and Wright (STE) is offering to buy 21.5% of its share capital at 590p a share as part of the cancellation of its listing. That is a 7% discount to NAV. There has been one trade in the shares so far this year. The property investor has been hit by the downturn in the high street.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) is trying to raise $40m and prior to that there will be a ten-for-one share consolidation. The cash will finance the acquisition of Minto Explorations from Capstone Mining, which will cost $37.5m in cash plus shares that would give Capstone 9.9% of Pembridge. Minto is a copper producer in the Yukon. The deal could be completed by the end of July.

Tom Charlton has increased his stake in North Midland Construction (NMD) from 8.4% to 9.4%.

Andrew Hore

Quoted Micro 16 October 2017

NEX EXCHANGE

This month marks the 22nd anniversary of the launch of NEX Exchange, although it was then originally called Ofex. A number of companies have gone on to bigger things, including Genus, which is in the FTSE250 index and accesso Technology, which is one of the top 50 companies on AIM. Further information can be found at http://www.hubinvest.com/AIMPDFOctober2017_97.pdf

MetalNRG (MNRG) has applied for two cobalt licences at Palomino and north Palomino in Western Australia but a rival has applied for the latter licence. There has also been interest from potential acquirers of this interest. A report has been received about the company’s US cobalt interests and this is being reviewed. A potential uranium project has been brought to the company and it is considering the opportunity.

Indigo Holdings (INGO) has invested £10,000 in 3sootjobs, a job search platform in Iran, giving it a 1.53% stake. Turquoise, which owns 32.1% of Indigo, and related parties, including Indigo directors, own around two-thirds of 3sootjobs.

Ecovista (EVTP) has bought a 80% stake in a company that owns a four bedroom property near Stanstead and it has paid £10,000 for an option on the next door property. The properties cover 1.72 acres.

AIM

Parcel delivery company DX (Group (DX.) is raising £24m from an issue of convertible loan notes. The conversion price will be 10p a share and the interest rate 8%. There is potential to issue a further £2m of loan notes. Lloyd Dunn has been appointed as chief executive but he is not on the board. Along with three directors, he is subscribing for £5.25m of loan notes.

Angle (AGL) has further positive indications of the effectiveness of its Parsortix liquid biopsy technology and it has also raised a further £2.8m, taking the total raised at 37.5p a share to £15m. Heinrich Heine University researchers has been able to able to continue to grow circulating tumour cells harvested using a Parsortix device.

Fashion retailer Quiz (QUIZ) performed strongly in the first half and online sales have increased to one-quarter of the total. This was before the launch of a website focused on Spain and there are plans for other international websites. The UK stores grew sales by 15%. Overall revenues were 35% ahead at £56.1m.

Orogen (ORE) is acquiring Thread 35 Ltd and changing its name to Sosandar (SOS), which is the acquisition’s online womenswear brand. The brand was launched on 19 September 2016 by the founders of fashion magazine Look and is aimed at the affluent professional woman. Orogen is paying £6.3m in cash and shares for the acquisition. Ten Orogen shares are being consolidated into one new share. A placing at 15.1p a share will raise £4.8m net to cover the cash portion of the acquisition cost.

Toilet tissue supplier Accrol Group Holdings (ACRL) expects to pay between£550,000 and £2.9m and because of its guilty plea the amount will be discounted by one-third. The figure will be announced early next year. Talks continue with major shareholders and the bank.

Wynnstay Group (WYN) has appointed administrators to Just for pets and 18 of the stores have been sold to PSR Ltd. The other seven have been closed. The loss-making pet products retailer had net assets of £2.2m.

Crop enhancement products supplier Plant Impact (PIM) increased its full year revenues by 17% to £8.5m even though sales in Brazil were disappointing. Higher research and development spending meant that there was a £3m loss. There was £7.2m in the bank at the end of July 2017. Plant Impact is moving into new geographic markets as well as building share in its existing markets.

Motor dealer Vertu Motors (VTU) intends to use some of its cash to buy back up to £3m worth of shares. There was net cash of £20.8m at the end of August 2017. Interim revenues were flat at £1.45bn buy underlying pre-tax profit was 7% higher at £20.9m.

Patrick O’Sullivan, who failed to gain a board seat at Conroy Gold and Natural Resources (CGNR), has reduced his stake in the Irish gold explorer to three million shares (24.6%). Conroy was awarded costs of the court proceedings made by Patrick O’Sullivan and the level is still to be assessed. Conroy has decided to cancel its quotation on the Dublin-based Enterprise Securities Market on 6 November. Conroy will still be quoted on AIM so shareholder approval is not required. Andrea Gonella currently owns less than 3% of Conroy, having owned more than 6% in July. Conroy has raised €240,000 via a €0.30 a share placing and a further €167,000 was raised from warrants taken up by directors Professor Richard Conroy and Maureen Jones.

Digital Barriers (DGB) has decided to sell its video business for up to £27.5m. It will concentrate on its Thruvision people screening business.

InterQuest Group (ITQ) has appointed Allenby as its nominated adviser and Peterhouse as its broker so trading in the shares has recommenced. Chisbridge Ltd ended up with 58.3% of InterQuest after its bid. It still wants to ditch the AIM quotation and it can buy shares in the market in order to increase the stake.

Patient monitoring device developer LiDCO (LID) has gained its first long-term high use programme contract with a US customer but that did not contribute in the first half. In the six months to July 2017, revenues were 4% higher at £3.9m and the loss was £1m. That was due to higher sales and marketing costs without the benefits of higher sales yet showing through.

1Spatial (SPA) has sold its non-core assets so that it can focus on geospatial data. There is particular potential in the US market. Although interim revenues were flat at £12.1m but a greater proportion were from the geospatial business. The operating loss was reduced from £1.9m to £1.2m and the cash outflow in the period was minimal. Claire Milverton has been confirmed as chief executive.

Two graphene-related companies are raising cash. Applied Graphene (AGM) has raised £9m at 36p a share and existing shareholders are being given the chance to subscribe for up to £1m via a one-for-eight open offer. There was £4.7m in the bank at the end of July 2017. The cash is being used to finance joint development activity for the strategic ink programme, which uses 2D inkjet printing to deliver graphene-based inks. Other potential uses are also being explored. Haydale Graphene Industries (HAYD) is raising £10m via a placing and offer at 120p a share, which was a 32% discount to the market price. Haydale recently changed broker to Arden. The cash will be used to provide working capital for existing orders and to develop new uses for graphene, including cookware.

SaaS-based accounting software supplier FreeAgent Holdings (FREE) says that it generated interim revenues of £4.6m, compared with £3.6m. There was a smaller first half loss and had net cash of £3.4m at the end of September 2017.

Top level domain names owner and distributor Minds + Machines (MMX) has received approval from the authorities in China to sell .law, .work, .beer and the Chinese equivalent of .shopping. Four more extensions are going through the approvals progress. So far, revenues from China for .vip have been a significant contributor to group revenues.

A consortium led by former chief executive Peter Earl is in early discussions with Rurelec (RUR) about a bid that could be backed by Rurelec’s joint venture Patagonia Energy Ltd.

An application to enable Redx Pharma (REDX) to get back control of its main subsidiary will be heard on 26 October. If approved, the subsidiary will come out of administration and the suspension of trading in Redx shares could be lifted.

Realm Therapeutics (RLM) has completed the £19.3m placing at 29p a unit (one unit is one share and a warrant for 0.4 of a share). The warrants provide an opportunity to subscribe for a share at 58p each. The initial focus of the cash will be the treatments PR022 for atopic dermatitis and PR013 for allergic conjunctivitis. There are also plans for a phase II trial for the PR023 treatment for acne vulgaris.

PipeHawk (PIP) has sold its 28.4% stake in south east England-based survey practice SUMO Ltd to its own executive chairman Gordon Watt for £197,499. That is the equivalent of the investment in loss-making SUMO and is more than its value in the books.

Dr Cliff Holloway has been appointed as chief executive of Scancell Holdings (SCLP) and he will push forward the immunotherapy platforms being developed by the company. His predecessor Dr Richard Goodfellow is remaining on the board. Scancell had £2.67m in the bank at the end of April 2017, which was less than the cash outflow in the previous 12 months.

Ashanti Gold Corp says that the Anumso gold project, where Goldplat (GDP) is earning up to 75% through a $3m investment in exploration, has broader and new mineralised zones. Soil sampling has produced good results and suggests high gold recovery rates.

Former AIM company Zenith Hygiene has agreed a cash bid from BCPE Diamond UK. The deal values Zenith at £100m, based on its enterprise value, although the final amount depends on performance.

MAIN MARKET

Cash shell J2 Acquisition Ltd (JTWO) commenced trading on the standard list on 10 October, having raised $1.25bn. The shell is seeking a company with a strong market share and proven track record. If an acquisition is not made within two years, shareholder approval will be required for a further 12 months of operation.

Levrett (LVRT) has completed the acquisition of Nuformix Ltd for £12m in shares at 4p each and it has changed its name to Nuformix. A further £2.3m has been raised at 4p a share. Trading will recommence on 16 September.

Sealand Capital Galaxy (SCGL) has signed a memorandum of understanding with AIM-quoted MySQUAR (MYSQ) that will enable the two companies to distribute each other’s mobile games.

Monchhichi (MCC) still intends to follow Pembridge Resources (PERE) from AIM to the standard list but the move has been delayed until mid-November. This will follow shareholder approval for the €10m investment in artificial intelligence, machine learning and behavioural data science company Sentiance and the approval of the prospectus by the UKLA. Sentiance lost more than €2m on revenues of €1.4m in 2016.

WideCells Group (WDC) plans to launch its CellPlan insurance for stem cell treatment in Spain before the end of the year. A partner has been secured for the expansion of stem cell services in the Middle East, north Africa and Asia Pacific. White Apex General Trading will be exclusive strategic partner for three years.

Andrew Hore

Quoted Micro 21 August 2017

NEX EXCHANGE

Good Energy (GOOD) has set the date for general meeting requisitioned by rival renewable electricity supplier Ecotricity, which wants Dale Vince and Simon Crowfoot to join the board. The general meeting will be held on 6 September. Good Energy still believes it would be unwise to have the representatives of its rival on the board.

Via Developments (VIA1) has paid a £412,500 non-refundable deposit on a residential development site in Latimer Road, Luton. Funding still has to be secured for the £8.25m purchase price.

Early Equity (EEQP) has taken a 4% stake in Malaysian multi-level marketing business Early Infinity, which has a distribution agreement with healthcare products supplier Yicom, where Early Equity owns 32.1%. The purchase was funded by the issue of 10 million Early Equity shares. The plan is for Early Equity to buy up to 30% of Early Infinity. Five million Early Equity shares have been issued at 0.6p each to raise £30,000.

Karoo Energy (KEP) has published the competent persons report on the Kalahari Karoo basin shale gas play. There is insufficient data to estimate shale gas or quantify the associated risk. The Lower Ecca shales are broadly correlatable with the source rocks in the broader basin. The low, unrisked estimate of gas initially in place (GIIP) is 310 bscf and Karoo has a 93.475% working interest. The advice is that further exploration is required to improve the understanding of maturity trends and confirm the depths of the Lower Ecca shale.

Lombard Capital (LCAP) has issued a further £55,000 of 7.5% convertible unsecured loan notes 2018, taking the total to £100,000. The conversion price is 10p a share and there are ten warrants for each £1 loan note exercisable at the same share price. There is planning permission for 200 apartments.

AIM

Clinigen (CLIN) has approached Quantum Pharma (QP.) about a proposed cash and shares offer. Due diligence has to be undertaken before there is a firm bid. Clinigen is taking advantage of the work that Quantum management has done in selling non-core operations and improving the performance of the rest of the business. Quantum says the interim figures will be brought forward to 22 August.

DX (Group) (DX.) has ended discussions with John Menzies over the merger with its distribution division because suitable terms could not be agreed. There had already been a change in the proposals but this was not enough to make the deal go through. This will mean that DX requires to raise additional funds. The four people that Gatemore Capital wanted to be appointed to the board when it requisitioned a general meeting, later withdrawn, are being proposed as directors and Bob Holt will be leaving the board. Trading in the shares remains suspended.

Oozi Cats has been kicked off the board of Telit Communications (TCM) after it turned out that he withheld information about an indictment against him in the US when the company floated 12 years ago. There have been fears about the cash position of the business but the directors’ have tried to reassure investors. Telit plans to appoint three UK-based non-executive directors.

Tracsis (TRCS) has reassured investors that it should hit market expectations for 2016-17. This means that pre-tax profit will be better than the £6.9m reported in the previous year. Tracsis had warned that the second half would have to be strong in order to make the forecast and this has happened. There was £15m in the bank at the end of July 2017. A reorganisation of the traffic and data services division should improve margins this year. The full year results will be reported in November.

IDOX (IDOX) is acquiring electoral back office software provider Halarose for £3.5m in cash and £1.5m in shares. This will boost the market share of IDOX in the UK elections market and there should also be cost savings.

Wilmcote Holdings (WCH) is the latest shell backed by Marwyn to join AIM. The £15m raised will be used to seek significant acquisitions in the chemicals sector. The share price rose from 120p to 132.5p. Former Synthomer boss Adrian Whitfield is chief executive.

Market research firm System1 Group (SYS1) stunned the market with a profit warning that sent its shares down nearly one-third. The former BrainJuicer announced at its AGM that the lack of a repeat of a large contract last year means that gross profit could be up to 11% lower in the first half of this year. On top of this costs are rising. The interim figures are likely to show breakeven compared with a £2.8m profit in the first half of the previous year. Full year pre-tax profit could fall by up to 15% from last year’s level of £6.3m.

Bushveld Minerals Ltd (BMN) says that a study carried out in conjunction with the Industrial Development Corporation shows strong vanadium redox flow battery technology in Africa with the market peaking by 2025-2030. Global electrolyte demand is likely to peak at the same time at 1200-1800 MWh. There is potential for Bushveld to supply 200MWh of storage per annum and a study is being undertaken for a potential vanadium electrolyte production plant in South Africa. Vanadium mining and related battery technology is the focus for Bushveld. There was a small net cash position at the end of February 2017.

Malvern International (MLVN) reported a reduction in interim loss from £460,000 to £395,000 as revenues slumped from £2.07m to £1.65m. Malaysian revenues fell but operating costs were reduced. There is £360,000 in the bank. The loss in Singapore has been reduced and that was before EduTrust certification, which is required to enrol international students, was reinstated. There has been year-on-year growth of 17% in London revenues and the loss was sharply reduced. House broker WH Ireland is not publishing forecasts at the moment.

Pawnbroker H&T Group (HAT) reported a 62% increase in first half pre-tax profit to £6.2m and the interim dividend was raised by 10%. H&T has been compared with Ramsden (RFX) but the mix of operations and revenues is very different.

Connemara Mining (CON) has raised £200,000 via a placing at 1.75p a share and each new share has a warrant to subscribe for an additional share at 3.42p each. Patrick Cullen has been appointed as chief executive of the gold and zinc explorer.

Red Leopard Holdings (RLH) is in talks to acquire a coal project in Colombia. Red Leopard will have to issue shares with a minimum valued of $180m in order to acquire the La Luna project. Trading in the shares is suspended.

MAIN MARKETS

Stem cell services and insurance provider WideCells Group (WDC) has raised £750,000 at 14p a share and the cash will be used to finance growth in the three operating divisions. Positive news has helped to boost the share price over the past two months. This includes the granting of a research licence by the UK Human Tissue Authority. The CellPlan insurance product is on sale and a digital platform is being developed for the educational division, WideAcademy.

Myanmar Strategic Holdings Ltd (SHWE) has raised $423,000 at $10 a share, while $3.9m of loan notes have been converted into shares. The focus is on hospitality and education sectors. The company already operates three hostels in Myanmar and it has acquired the rights from Pearson to open English language centres. Last year, revenues were $330,000 and the loss was $2.38m. Dealings are due to commence on 22 August.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) is set to move from AIM to the standard list on 21 August. It has raised £2.27m at 1.6p a share. The move will provide more time for Pembridge to build up a portfolio of mining investments without worrying about doing this within the timescale required on AIM.

Quarto (QRT) has ended bid negotiations with an unnamed bidder less than a fortnight after revealing the talks. One of the stumbling blocks was the regulatory approval required by the bidder and the book publisher’s management did not want to be distracted from trading by a bid that could take a long time to come to fruition. This is despite the fact that the bid proposal was at an attractive premium.

Bluebird Merchant Ventures (BMV) has located the three historic entry points to the Gubong gold mine in South Korea. This will enable access to five of the veins that were previously mined when the gold price was much lower.

Andrew Hore

Quoted Micro 24 July 2017

NEX EXCHANGE

Ace Liberty & Stone (ALSP) has raised £10m via a 6% convertible loan note. The conversion price is 71.25p a share and full conversion would be the equivalent of 26% of the share capital. The loan note is redeemable on 23 May 2019. The holder of the loan note has also been granted an option to purchase some of Ace’s properties.

Block Energy (BLOK) has increased its ownership of the Norio onshore oil field production sharing contract in Georgia from 38% to 69% at a cost of $310,000 in cash. The plan is to move to a 100% working interest. Schlumberger estimates that Norio contains 118.7 million stock tank oil initially in place and it has produced 1.9 million barrels. The production is running at 25 barrels per day and the plan is to increase this to more than 250 barrels per day. That could happen within six weeks of the start of a work programme.

African Potash (AFPO) has raised £50,000 at 0.045p a share and appointed Alexander David as its new corporate adviser. This will help to get the trading suspension lifted. Warrants to raise a further £50,000 will last for 90 days from the lifting of suspension. An agreement has been entered with African Agronomix, which is being given the right to acquire 100% of the company’s 70% interest in the Lac Dinga project in the Republic of Congo.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has appointed Beaumont Cornish as its provisional nominated adviser for a proposed move to AIM. NQ Minerals has secured a $7m loan facility from the RIVI Opportunity Fund and this funds the final payment for the Hellyer gold mine in Tasmania. A gold purchase agreement means that 14% of the first 22,000 ounces of payable gold and 7% of the amount in excess of that figure has to be sold to RIVI.

The joint venture between a 40%-owned subsidiary of food and logistics company AfriAg Global (AFRI) and LGC Capital, which is quoted on TSX, is acquiring a 60% stake in South Africa-based House of Hemp, which has a long-term lease on the only certified indoor cannabis growing facility. The joint venture is paying nearly C$20,000 and C$37,000 a month for six months. The joint venture will also secure C$4.9m to scale up production. David Lenigas is chairman of both joint venture companies.

MiLOC Group Ltd (ML.P) has raised £166,000 at 28.5p a share.

AIM

Audio visual products distributor Midwich Group (MIDW) says that the weakness of sterling has helped it to grow and the recently acquired Spanish business has done better than expected. This has led to upgrades for the next three years. Investec has raised the 2017 earnings forecast to 21.3p a share. Cash generation remains strong and the net debt forecast has been reduced to £20.2m. The interim figures will be reported on 12 September.

Regenerative medical devices developer Tissue Regenix Group (TRX) is acquiring CellRight Technologies, a US-based developer of bone processing and soft tissue products, for an initial $25.9m (£19.9m) with an earn-out of up to $4.1m (£3.1m) depending on revenues. The bone technology widens the group product range from a pure focus on soft tissue products. The deal also includes a US manufacturing facility. CellRight has launched 13 products since 2012 and more are due in the second half of 2017. The products are sold through distributors. In 2016, revenues were $5.42m and the gross margin was 62%. Two-fifths of revenues were from spine products. In the eleven months to December 2016, Tissue Regenix revenues were £1.44m. Tissue Regenix raised £40m at 10p a share and the additional funds will finance the growth of the enlarged business. All but one of the directors has subscribed for new shares. Management believes it is possible for the group to move into profit by 2020. Tissue Regenix plans to launch seven products over the next two years.

Qannas Investments Ltd (QIL) is using $8m to tender for 12.9% of the share capital at $0.90 each. There are not enough distributable reserves to pay a dividend of this size.

Transport optimisation software and services provider Tracsis (TRCS) has won a multi-million pound contract with a UK rail operator. The contract will last four years and includes the renewal of some existing licences. There should be recurring revenues after the four year period. There will be no contribution in the year to July 2017.

Tristel (TSTL) says that sales in the year to June 2017 were 17% higher at more than £20m and pre-tax profit is going to be more than 10% higher than forecast. The pre-tax profit is expected to be £4m. The growth is predominantly from international sales.

Crop enhancement technology developer Plant Impact (PIM) says that full year revenues will be between £8.5m and £9m, up from £7.2m the previous year. This is despite the cancelation of shipments of Veritas to Brazil. Contract discussions about Veritas with Bayer in Brazil are continuing and they may take some time. However, new buying arrangements are expected to help 2017-18 revenues reach £13m. There is £3.2m left in the bank but a further £2m is being raised at 31p a share with the possibility of a further £2m. This cash is required to finance R&D.

IP Group has raised its all share offer for Touchstone Innovations (IVO) but technology business developer says that the offer of 304p a share, based on an IP Group share price of 137p, is still below its NAV of 312p a share.

EQTEC Group (EQT) is in talks to acquire the waste-to-energy technology subsidiary of its majority shareholder, EBIOSS. EQTEC will pay for the business in shares and it will also need to raise more cash for working capital. Due diligence is being undertaken.

TV programmes producer Zinc Media Group (ZIN) expects to make EBITDA of £300,000 in the year to June 2017. The business has been restructured and starts the new financial year with a strong base. There is a commissioned TV slate of £6.5m for this year.

Security technology supplier Synectics (SNX) reported a 5% increase in revenues and a rise in gross margins, which enabled the interim pre-tax profit to increase by £1m to £1.3m. The oil and gas sector is showing signs of recovery and the order book is worth £33.7m. There is net cash of £1.8m. A full year profit of £3m is forecast.

Inland Homes (INL) increased its completions by 28% to 188, helped by the development of the company’s in-house construction team. In the year to June 2017, revenues will fall from £102m to £90m, although this excludes the revenues from two land sales.

First Property Group (FPO) has launched a new fund which could double third party assets under management. Fprop Offices LP has eight institutional investors and will invest in office blocks and business parks over a seven year term. So far, £182m has been invested in the fund, including £3m by First Property. A loan to value of up to 30% is allowed. This new fund will not pay recurring management fees and instead First Property will take a share of any profit.

Parity Group (PTY) continues to increase its exposure to consultancy activities. WH Ireland has trimmed its revenues expectation for this year but has maintained its pre-tax profit forecast at £1.6m.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) is raising £2.5m at 1.6p a share as part of the planned move to a standard listing.

MAIN MARKET

World Trade Systems (WTS) has dispatched a circular to shareholders in order to gain retrospective approval for loans from Kudrow, which is deemed to be a related party. This is part of the process of the re-application for a standard listing. Kudrow has waived its right to interest and there is an intention to convert the remaining loan of £860,000 into shares.

Bluebird Merchant Ventures Ltd (BMV) says that work has started on reopening the Gubong mine in South Korea.

Andrew Hore

Quoted Micro 5 June 2017

NEX EXCHANGE

National Milk Records (NMRP) is raising £7.33m at 65p a share in order to help finance the withdrawal from the Milk Pension Fund. Like Genus, National Milk Records was part of the Milk Marketing Board and that is why it has part responsibility for the Milk Pension Fund. There will be a one-off contribution of £10.1m to the fund and £4.68m will be paid in cash and shares to Genus. National Milk Records is also selling its loss-making generic products reseller Inimex to Genus for a nominal amount and entering a collaboration agreement with the animal genetics company. There would be a requirement to finance the fund up until 2076 if the deal does not go ahead. A New Zealand-based farmer cooperative and Singapore-based fund manager Working Capital Management are among the investors subscribing for the shares.

Contemporary art collector and workspace provider V22 (V22O) moved into profit in 2016. The £1m profit was helped by a £225,000 gain on the sale of half of the option to acquire part of the freehold of its Peckham building and a £225,000 notional gain on the remaining option. There was also other operating income of £621,000. Stripping these items out, there would have been a slightly higher loss. Revenues grew from £822,000 to £1.24m. There was £64,000 in the bank at the end of 2016. NAV, including a valuation of the art portfolio, is 7.31p a share. Demand for studio space is strong at a time when it is become less affordable. This puts V22 in a strong position. V22 has agreed a ten year lease on premises in Shoreditch and is the preferred bidder for a 125 year lease on The Priory in Orpington.

Blockchain-focused investment company Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) has raised £250,000 at 2.2p a share to finance further investments. In 2016, Coinsilium increased revenues from £12,000 to £209,000. There was a total loss of £738,000, including a £317,000 loss on disposals and investment impairments of £160,000 – admittedly down from £1.31m the previous year. The NAV was £1.43m at the end of 2016.

Kryptonite 1 (KR1) is also seeking blockchain investments. This includes subscribing for shares in Satoshipay. It has also invested in five initial token offerings and three of them are already being traded and have performed well.

London Nusantara Plantations (PALM) is selling its stake in Next Oasis for £124,000. This was in the 2016 balance sheet at a valuation of £112,000 and the proceeds will boost the 2016 cash pile from £83,000. London Nusantara has been quoted for three years and it is still seeking to acquire plantation assets and it has widened its geographic search to Indonesia, as well as considering the palm oil mill sector and generating income from oil palm waste.

Early Equity (EEQP) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Malaysian multi-level marketing business Early Infinity, which has a distribution agreement with healthcare products supplier Yicom, where Early Equity owns 32.1%. The plan is for Early Equity to buy up to 30% of Early Infinity. Trading in Early Equity shares has been suspended.

Ganapati (GANP) has obtained a class 4 gaming licence in Malta and this should widen the potential market for its games. A tech office has been set up in Romania.

Halal services provider DagangHalal (DGHL) has raised £3.1m at 26.5p a share and this will leave managing director Francis Chong with a 29.9% stake. Revenues fell last year and there were significant asset write downs.

Middle East-focused investment company Indigo Holdings (INGO) had £906,000 in the bank at the end of 2016 and it raised £818,000 in February. Around £650,000 of that cash has been invested in three companies.

Restructuring and slow LED product sales meant that Gowin New Energy Group Ltd (GWIN) reported a slump in revenues from RMB652,000 to RMB28,000, while the loss was RMB6.94m. There is RMB2.08m of cash in the bank but there is more than that figure in shareholder loans because of the significant cash outflow during the year.

MiLOC Group Ltd (ML.P) increased its revenues from HK$8.31m to HK$10.9m in 2016 and the loss fell from HK$17.1m to HK$11.5m. The company’s clinics and traditional Chinese medicines generate the revenues and the TCM PLUS skincare products are expected to make a substantial contribution in the future. Last year, there was a large one-off cost relating to TCM PLUS. A hair care range is planned.

Equatorial Mining & Exploration (EM.P) intends to apply for a small scale mining lease for a coal mining prospect in Nigeria. Equatorial lost £1.55m in 2016 but £1.24m of this was a non-cash share-based payment charge. The cash outflow from operations was £383,000. Brett Clark has stepped down from the board following the failure to secure the acquisition of a Mexican gold project.

Healthcare staff provider Healthperm Resourcing Ltd (HPR) reported a £3.1m loss on revenues of £2,000 for 2016 but the business should generate more significant revenues this year. Steve Howson has become chief executive, while the former incumbent David Sumner became non-executive co-chairman. Two groups of overseas recruits have started work in the UK.

Ecovista (EVTP) has raised £470,000 via an issue of convertible loan notes. The conversion price is 0.05p a share. Any loan notes not converted will be repayable on 30 May 2018. Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP) has raised £64,500 from a placing at 75p a share with most of the shares bought by Bijan Daneshmand, thereby taking his stake to 5.16%.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) lost £2.39m in 2016 but this was before the acquisition of the Hellyer gold mine in Tasmania. The main asset of All Star Minerals (ASMO) is its stake in NQ Minerals. This stake was valued at £414,000 at the end of 2016. The 2016 loss was £187,000, including a £28,000 write down in the NQ Minerals stake.

AIM

Touchstone Innovations (IVO), the former Imperial Innovations, has rejected the bid from rival University-focused technology businesses developer IP Group. The initial approach was made in April and some major shareholders were keen to pursue the merger. The main problems concerned valuation and corporate governance.

It does not appear that Tanfield Group (TAN) is going to be able to sell its 49% stake in access platforms manufacturer Snorkel in the near future because it continues to lose money. The value of the stake in the books is £36.3m – equivalent to 23.2p a share. This value can be achieved if Snorkel makes an annualised trailing EBITDA of $25m in any 12 month period up until September 2018. However, Snorkel is losing money and after September 2018 there is no fixed amount that Tanfield would receive if it sold its stake. Jon Pither has stepped down from the Tanfield board.

Acoustic insulation manufacturer Autins Group (AUTG) has appointed Michael Jennings as chief executive. He has been interim chief executive since February. Interim figures will be published on 13 June.

Draganfly Investments (DRG) has appointed mining engineer Luke Bryan as executive chairman. Edward Bayman will step down as chairman but continue on the board.

Hostels operator Safestay (SSTY) is planning to buy three hostels from Equity Point. The hostels are in Barcelona, Prague and Lisbon and they generate revenues of €1.6m. Safestay is loaning €3.6m to Equity Point and the plan is to swap the hostels for this debt.

Stanley Gibbons Ltd (SGI) has sold its 25% stake in Masterpiece London for £1.4m. The stake was valued in the books at £6,000. This is part of the strategy to focus on stamps and coins.

A general meeting has been requisitioned at Magnolia Petroleum (MAGP) in order to make changes to the board. At the end of May, Nostra Terra Oil & Gas (NTOG) acquired a 10.9% stake in Magnolia from former chief executive Steven Snead but the requisitioner has not been named.

Adams (ADA) has launched an underwritten one-for-one open offer to raise £1.03m at 2.5p a share. The investment focus is the technology and life sciences sectors. Richard Griffiths, who owns 29.9% of Adams, is underwriting the open offer. The announcement says that Adams has four AIM-quoted investments but only one of the companies mentioned, Oxford Pharmascience, is on AIM the others are fully listed.

TLA Worldwide (TLA), which published a profit warning at 6.26pm on 23 December 2016, thinks that it will be able to report its 2016 figures on 30 June. It will need to do this or trading in the shares will be suspended. TLA has warned that it will have to write-off some of the money owed to it.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) plans to move from AIM to the more lightly regulated standard listing. This will enable it to be more flexible in what it invests in and the level of stakes that it acquires. The main hurdle for a standard listing is getting the prospectus approved by the UKLA. Once that is done companies do not have the level of regulation they would if they were on AIM.

MAIN MARKET

Second half trading has been strong for car manuals publisher Haynes Publishing (HYNS). Pre-tax profit is expected to be two-fifths higher than last year. Haynes has benefited from lowering its costs and positive exchange rate movements. The new Haynes OnDemand video service will be launched this year but there will be a write down of the costs of the previous platform in the 2016-17 figures. The full year figures will be published on 13 September.

Telecoms services provider Toople (TOOP) is trying to raise up to £2m because it is running short of cash. Members of the PrimaryBid crowdfunding platform have been offered the chance to subscribe for shares at 2p each. A minimum of £1m needs to be raised. Even if the maximum is raised then the cash is unlikely to last long unless the cash outflow is stemmed in the near future.

Acorn Growth has changed its name to Vordere (VOR). This follows the proposed acquisition of German properties, which will be paid for by a share issue at 17p each. The shell company was originally known as Acorn Minerals when it joined the standard list at a placing price of 20p a share in October 2012.

Andrew Hore

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