AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE
There are three companies on the shortlist of the AQSE company of the year award at the Small Cap Awards 2021. They are medical IT provider DXS International (DXSP), oncology and dermatology treatments developer Incanthera (INC) and Kent-based wine maker Chapel Down Group (CDGP).
Brewer Daniel Thwaites (THW) was hampered by lockdowns in the six months to September 2021, but they were not as bad as in the first half of the previous year. Revenues increased from £221.8m to £47.8m, while the business returned to profit with £7.5m before tax. Net debt was £61.4m at the end of September 2021. Government support has come to an end and there are inflationary pressures, only partly offset by beer duty changes.
Quantum Exponential (QBIT) is a shell focused on quantum technology and predominantly companies in NATO countries. There are no other quoted companies offering a potential investment in this sector. The plan is to put together a portfolio of quantum technology company investments, which are most likely to be at the seed or early stage. Quantum computing uses the laws of quantum physics to increase the speed of computation. Nearly £2.5m was raised after expenses at 5p and the share price ended the week at 6.625p (6.25p/7p). The NAV is 1.65p a share, so the current share price is more than four times that level. Helium Special Situations has taken a 4.57% stake.
Kashei Holdings (KASH) intends to build up a portfolio of investments in cryptocurrencies and blockchain. The portfolio will include digital assets, listed investments, venture capital opportunities and staking digital assets into liquidity smart contracts and perform staking services. There should be around £3.7m available for investment, although 10% of that will be required for working capital, following the placing at 16p a share. The current mid-price is 20.25p (19.5p/21p). Pro forma NAV is 13.1p a share.
Samarkand Group (SMK) is acquiring Napiers the Herbalists, which it has been trading with for three years. The initial consideration is £1.7m in cash with deferred consideration of £100,000. There is also contingent consideration of up to $700,000. In the year to March 2021, revenues were £1m and EBITDA was £240,000.
All Star Minerals (ASMO) signed exclusive heads of terms with a company with gemstone assets and another company with diamond assets. It has terminated the gemstone deal and extended the potential diamond deal. The potential acquisition has white and coloured diamonds and an off-take and financing agreement. Ian Harebottle, the interim chief executive of All Star Minerals, owns 25% of the diamond company.
Vulcan Industries (VULC) has signed heads of terms to acquire Aftech, which is a sheet metal fabrication company that fits in with existing subsidiaries. Aftech has net assets of £780,000 and net debt of £90,000. Full year revenues are estimated to be £1m with EBITDA of £175,000. Vulcan will pay £1.55m in shares and this may represent 21.5% of the enlarged share capital.
TruSpine Technologies (TSP) has submitted a request to the FDA to consider the Cervi-LOK system as a breakthrough device technology. That would enable the device to generate higher margins.
Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) had crypto assets of $4.22m at the beginning of November 2021. That is more than double the value at the end of June.
Rutherford Health (RUTH) increased interim revenues by 36% to £4.85m in the six months to August 2021. September revenues were more than £1m. More oncologists have been trained to use the company’s technology. Rutherford Health will continue to lose money.
Pioneer Media Inc (PNER) has acquired CryptoPunk 8869 for $433,700.
Asia Wealth Group Holdings (AWLP) increased interim revenues from $894,000 to $940,000, while pre-tax profit improved from $117,000 to $123,000. There was $1.36m in the bank at the end of August 2021.
Online electrical retailer Marks Electrical (MRK) specialises in kitchen appliance, audio visual products and small electrical appliances and has been growing its share of the market. Since 2014, Marks Electrical has increased its market share from 0.41% to 1.22%. A placing raised £2.63m after expenses at 110p each and shareholders sold shares worth £25m. The company’s warehouse has enough capacity to cope with revenues of £180m, more than treble last year’s level. The shares ended the first day at 110.5p.
Devolver Digital Inc (DEVO) is the latest video games publisher to join AIM. The Delaware-based company’s original focus has been indie games produced by third parties, but more recently it has been acquiring companies with their own IP. The cash raised by the company in the placing will be used to acquire strategic partners and finance the development of third party and in-house games. Nearly £30m was raised after expenses and the price has risen from the placing price of 157p to 187.5p. The overall video games market is forecast to grow from $177.8bn to $218.7bn in 2024.
Escape rooms operator Escape Hunt (ESC) is acquiring Boom Battle Bars, which offers competitive socialising activities along with drinks and food. The total cost is £17.38m, with £9.88m in cash and deferred consideration of up to 25 million shares. The shares are subject to an earn-out based on revenues number of sites open. Escape Hunt raised £15m at 30p a share and could raise up to £2.2m from a one-for-12 open offer at the same share price. The acceptance date is 19 November. The enlarged group will be renamed XP Factory.
Self-storage sites operator Lok’nStore (LOK) had a much more significant than forecast uplift in its NAV at the end of July 2021. It increased from 555.5p a share to 731.1p a share. This year the dividend has been raised by 2p a share to 15p a share. The additional sites in progress will add 38% to space over the next few years.
Bleepa communications technology developer Feedback (FDBK) is raising £10m in a placing at 0.7p a share to take advantage of opportunities and finally build up revenues. There is also a one-for-15 open offer to existing shareholders that can raise up to £500,000 more. The CareLocker technology that is being piloted in Sussex could be a game changer. Combined with Bleepa it can store patient records individually in the cloud instead of in one place where it is easier to hack.
Gensource Potash (GSP) was already quoted on the Toronto Venture Exchange before joining AIM, and its focus is the Tugaske potash project in Canada. Gensource owns 67% of the vehicle that owns the project and has arranged finance to cover the C$352m cost of building the mine. The Tugaske project’s proven and probable mineral reserve is 14.1 million tonnes and there is a likely minimum expected mine life of more than 56 years, based on annual production of 250,000 tonnes of saleable muriate of potash. The share price ended the first day at 27.5p.
Remote tracking and monitoring technology provider Starcom (STAR) is changing its name to t42 IoT Tracking Solutions and rebranding its products. There will also be an eight-for-one share consolidation.
In the six months to August 2021, Braemar Shipping Services (BMS) revenues grew by 11% to £47.4m, while pre-tax profit improved from £4.47m to £4.92m. The order book is 28% ahead at $55.5m. Net debt has fallen to £14.7m. There is a 2p a share interim dividend.
IT services provider Triad Group (TRD) reported a decline in interim revenues, but pre-tax profit jumped from £1,000 to £670,000. There is a 2p a share interim dividend. There is cash of £5.34m. high utilisation levels are continuing.