Wine and beer maker Chapel Down (CDGP) reported a one-third increase in 2015 revenues but a smaller increase in profit. The investment in an additional 90 acres of vineyards should provide further impetus in the coming years. Wine sales were 27% higher last year. Revenues increased from £6.11m to £8.18m and underlying profit improved from £133,000 to £141,000. Brewing subsidiary Curious Drinks has raised £1.71m to invest in a new brewery and last year its sales rose by 50%. At 33.5p (32p/35p) a share, Chapel Down is valued at £33.8m.
Electronics and engineering group Mechan Controls (MECP) failed to find a bidder that was willing to meet its board’s valuation for the business. Bids for parts of the group were also too low but there is still potential to sell individual subsidiaries. This means that the formal sales process has ended. At 248p (243p/253p) a share, Mechan is valued at £5m.
Diversified Gas & Oil Corp (DOIL) has completed the purchase of assets in Ohio for $4.8m. These assets are producing 250 barrels of oil per day and 3,000 mcf of gas a day. Diversified operates more than 5,000 producing wells in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania producing 450 barrels of per day and 13,000 mcf gas a day. So far £6.9m has been raised from bond issues. There are further acquisition opportunities.
Queros Capital Partners (QCP) has issued a further £390,000 of 8% unsecured bonds. The company’s focus is investment in social housing portfolios and property asset-backed lending in the UK and Europe. Queros originally raised £500,000 last July and the latest issue takes the bonds in issue to £972,000.
Electrical testing and oil and gas equipment rental and sales company Northbridge Industrial Services (NBI) is raising £5.5m through a placing and open offer at 75p a share and management will contribute around one-fifth of this cash. Northbridge fell into loss last year as demand from the oil sector weakened. Costs have been reduced but Northbridge is not expected to return to profit until 2017. Debt covenants have been a concern and the additional cash will help net debt to fall from £14.3m, while capex should be lower than depreciation this year.
SalvaRx Group (SALV) has made its first investment since it reversed into 3Legs Resources. A $2m investment will give SavaRx a 9.2% interest in Intensity Therapeutics, which is developing a treatment for solid tumours. Intensity has a platform called DfuseRx that can identify formulations based on existing treatments that could be injected into solid tumours. The lead treatment is INT230-6, which could enter human trials by the end of this year. SalvaRx chief executive Dr Ian Walters has been working with Intensity for nearly two years so he knows about the technology. Jim Mellon and a fellow SalvaRx non-exec are subscribing for $1m of convertible loan notes in SalvaRx. The conversion price is 35.5p a share.
Healthcare services provider Totally (TLY) has been adding new clients to its services, including new prison contracts. The nine new contracts cover 21 locations and are worth £300,000 a year over the five years of the contracts. The services provided include physiotherapy. Totally is also integrating health education services and products provided by US business Healthwise into its self-care services. Totally has a three year agreement with Healthwise.
Investment company BP Marsh (BPM) has sold its 49% stake in small business sales adviser Broucour Group to its founder for up to £341,000. A £330,000 loan will also be repaid. BP Marsh has also invested S$2.4m for a 20% stake in Asia Reinsurance Brokers. An additional investment of S$500,000 could increase the stake to 25%. The Singapore-based reinsurance and insurance risk services provider is well-established and profitable.
CEII Roma is investing £10.45m in copper and gold miner Rambler Metals & Mining (RMM) at 4p a share – a small discount to the market price. Canada-based Rambler has also issued 200 million warrants with an exercise price of 5p a share. The initial cash should enable production at the Ming copper-gold mine to increase to 1,250 metric tonnes per day over the next few years. Rambler will assess the potential for further investment in the mine. Last month, Rambler said that it is exploring the potential for toll mining gold concentrate from the Cap Ray deposit at its Nugget Pond mill.
Standard list cash shell Vertu Capital Ltd (VCBC) has identified a potential acquisition. The financial services-focused investment company intends to acquire corporate finance consultancy VCB Malaysia for £350,000. VCB is profitable and offers capital market, investor relations, fundraising and wealth management services. Vertu believes that VCB can be used as a base to grow a consultancy and wealth management business. Due diligence is still being undertaken. The deal will require a document for the readmission of the company to the standard list because it is a reverse takeover but it does not require shareholder approval because the company is on the standard list.
Standard list cash shell Falcon Acquisitions (FAL) has raised £2m at 20p a share to add to its cash pile. Falcon, which is seeking online television and broadcasting businesses to acquire, previously raised £1.73m, mainly at 10p a share when Falcon floated in January. At the time of flotation, Falcon said that it wanted to raise additional funds of up to £2m at a share price to be set between 10p and 30p.
Investment company Athelney Trust (ATY) has raised £390,000 after expenses at 233.2p a share, the NAV at the end of March, and the shares were admitted to the market on 21 April. The placing price was at a premium to the market price. Managing director Robin Boyle believes that there are a number of mis-priced shares that the cash can be used to buy.