Brewer Shepherd Neame (SHEP) reported record results for the year to June 2016. Revenues increased by 1% to £139.9m, while underlying pre-tax profit was 11% higher at £10.3m. The growth in revenues and profit came from the managed pubs business. The brewing division reported a lower profit due to the loss of the Kingfisher brewing contract and higher costs of the water treatment plant. The final dividend is 3% higher at 22.05p a share, making a total for the year of 27.5p a share.
Crossword Cybersecurity (CCS) is starting to build up its revenues from products created in partnership with a number of UK universities. Distributors are being appointed for the cyber risk product Rizikon which is based on research by City University. In the six months to June 2016, revenues were £164,000 – eight times the previous twelve months. The loss was £403,000. There was £668,000 in the bank at the end of June 2016, which is slightly more than the cash outflow in the first half. Boss Tom Ilube was on the panel for the cyber security seminar held at ICAP’s headquarters last Wednesday.
Blockchain businesses investor Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) reported revenues of £196,000 and a loss of £270,000, including an impairment charge of £120,000, in the first half of 2016. There was nearly £164,000 in the bank at the end of June 2016. There are investments valued at £1.67m in the balance sheet.
Residential property developer Via Developments (VIA1) has issued a further £1m of 7% debentures 2020. This takes the total issued to £4.5m.
London Nusantara Plantations (LNPP) has identified potential oil palm estates investments in east Malaysia. The company has acquired an 11% stake in 404 hectares of land to use for oil palm cultivation. There is nearly £162,000 in the bank. Acquisitions will be funded by a mix of debt and equity.
Incubator company Milamber Ventures (MLVP) has become involved with 15 companies and one of these, Knowledge Motion, has signed a seven figure deal with Pearson. Milamber has the rights to 5% of Knowledge Motion. There was £289 in the bank at the end of March 2016 and the NAV was £291,000. Since then, a further £45,000 has been raised. Service and success fees plus grant-related revenues mean that this years revenues should be much higher than the £70,000 reported in the year to March 2016.
White Fox Ventures Inc is subscribing for $2.35m of shares in Australian minerals explorer NQ Minerals (NQMI) in seven tranches over six months. The issue price is 11.1 cents (8.4p). White Fox has already subscribed for $150,000 worth of shares. White Fox (www.whitefoxventures.com) is an OTXQB-traded company and this is the first of a number of strategic investments planned by the company. The company is also seeking acquisitions and its current activity is educating people how to make money.
Electricity and gas supplier Yu Group (YU.) could reach profitability in the second half of 2016. Even before it moved into profit Yu is paying a maiden dividend of 0.75p. A growing dividend is planned. Yu is still building up its revenues and they were £5.1m in the first half of 2016 but higher operating expenses meant that there was an underlying interim loss. Yu could become highly cash generative. It is expected to end 2016 with cash of £6.6m and this could rise to £10.3m a year later.
Bond International Software (BDI) has recommended the increase Constellation Software bid of 115.5p a share, which is near to the 116p-118p a share the company expects to distribute to shareholders if it were wound up. The bid provides a certain outcome whereas there is a risk that the total distributions could be lower. However, if there is a majority vote at the upcoming general meeting to agree to the sale of the remaining businesses the offer will lapse. That would mean that the proposed acquirer would have to be paid up to £350,000 due to the deal falling through.
Sinclair Pharma (SPH) was undergone significant changes in the past year but it has still to enjoy the benefits of some of these. It does have cash of £24.4m following the disposal of non-core activities in order to concentrate on aesthetic treatments. Sales are growing internationally but the taking over of distribution in Brazil and the US distribution deal for Silhouette InstaLift will make more significant contributions in a year or two. The latter will require a lot of investment in the coming year or so but it should help Sinclair to move into profit in 2018.
Structural steel supplier Billington Holdings (BILN) is continuing its recovery and the acquisition of Shafton Steel Services, which is based five miles away from the head office, enables Billington to increase its capacity. In the six months to June 2016, revenues improved from £24.5m to £27m, while pre-tax profit edged ahead from £1.7m to £1.74m after redundancy costs. The pre-tax profit margin is back above 6% but there is still more potential for recovery. Strong cash flow meant that cash more than doubled to £6.24m. There will be some additional capital investment required to increase capacity. The order book continues to grow.
Mobile payments processor MiPay (MPAY) is being used to process an increasing number of transactions, although interim revenues were affected by a change in terms with a large customer. The good news is that although revenues were 7% ahead at £1.6m, gross profit was one-third higher. Combining that with lower overheads means that the operating loss was reduced by three-quarters to £250,000. Clients are attracted by MiPay’s ability to reduce the risk of fraud. There should be £3m of net cash at the end of 2016. MiPay could make a small profit in 2017.
Fund manager Miton Group (MGR) increased its funds under management to £2.54bn by the end of June and that was despite an outflow from the CF Miton UK Value Opportunities Fund. The figure has risen further to £2.71bn since then. In the six months to June 2016, pre-tax profit recovered from £800,000 to £3.1m. Net cash was £18.4m at the end of August 2016.
Mortice Ltd (MORT) says that its UK facilities management business has been appointed to a £60m framework contract with London Universities. The contract for cleaning and associated services is for a three year period. Those companies on the framework will be invited to bid for individual contracts. Mortice’s subsidiary is the only company that has been appointed to all three parts of the framework.
Fishing tackle and consumables retailer Fishing Republic (FISH) grew its first half revenues by one-third to £2.5m. This was via a combination of organic growth and new store openings, although these newere sites are still building up trade. Online sales were weaker as management moved the focus away from third party sites to its own branded website. That will help margins in the medium-term. Underlying pre-tax profit edged up from £149,000 to £157,000. Two more stores will open in the second half. Investment in new stores will hold back this year’s profit whih is expected to rise from £305,000 in 2015 to £404,000. Earnings per share will decline because of the recent share issue but that cash is being put to work and the benefits should show through next year.
Talent management technology and services provider NetDimensions (NETD) remains on track to move into profit next year. Higher margin licence sales rose during the first half but overall interim revenues were slightly lower at $10.5m. Recurring revenues are more than two-thirds of total revenues. Full year revenues of $26.6m and a loss of $400,000 is forecast. In 2017, a profit of $1.2m is expected on revenues of $31.5m.
Coins investor Avarae Global Coins (AVR) plans to ditch its AIM quotation and it is offering to buy back 16.16 million shares at 11.5p each. It plans to buy back the same number of shares after it leaves AIM. High quality coin prices are plateauing and a small loss was made in the year to March 2016. There is no dividend. There was a cash balance of £570,000 at the end of March and the NAV was 14.6p a share.
Project management services provider Styles & Wood (STY) is paying an initial £2m in cash and shares for Keysource, which will boost the group’s expertise in projects for critical facilities and data centres. The deal will be earnings enhancing next year. In the six months to June 2016, Styles & Wood improved its underlying pre-tax profit from £200,000 to £500,000, although the business is second half weighted so the full year outcome will be much higher.
AIM-quoted Kibo Mining (KIBO) is reversing the Imweru and Lubando gold projects into standard list shell Opera Investments (OPRA). Kibo will receive 61 million shares in Opera at a notional price of 6p each for the Tanzania-based projects. Imeru could be producing gold in 18 months. An AIM admission document is expected to be published before the end of November and at least £1.2m will be raised at 6p a share. The Opera share price has slumped from 10p to 4.38p since it floated in April 2015. Two previous acquisitions have fallen through. It will be interesting to see whether Opera will change its name to Katoro Gold Mining.