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Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 31 May 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Pharma C Investments (PCIL) is a shell seeking to invest in medicinal cannabis sector-focused companies, particularly those that provide ancillary products and services to the sector, and it joined the Access segment on 26 May. The indication is that plant genetics, product testing, marketing, procurement services and cannabis consumption devices are areas that might be considered. There was £920,000, after expenses, raised at 0.7p a share. Cash is equivalent to less than 0.4p a share. The shares ended the first day of trading at 0.825p (0.75p/0.9p/) and maintained that price until the end of the week.

Dispersion Holdings (DEFI) has made its first investment. An equity investment of €250,000 has been made in SportsX SAS, which is a technology platform for amateur sports clubs, for a 25% stake. SportsX SAS helps clubs to create club-branded Ethereum-based tokens. SportsX SAS takes 18% of gross merchandising revenues and charges an annual membership fee. It also retains a 10%-20% interest in club tokens. These tokens may eventually be listed on an Ethereum-based exchange, such as Uniswap.

Valereum Blockchain (VLRM) expects to launch the first listed company non-fungible token (NFT) live on a crypto exchange in the next few weeks. This will be via Valereum’s Bridge financial platform and use the Mattereum Asset Passport.

GP IT systems supplier DXS International (DXSP) maintained its profit on slightly higher turnover last year. Pilots of new systems have been continuing but the pace is slower than originally expected. Progress should speed up when there is less pressure on GPs due to Covid. Formal NHS GPIT Futures accreditation should be awarded soon for the ExpertCare hypertension product.

Virgata Services has extended its bid for Walls & Future REIT (WAFR) until 10 June. Virgata argues that the 50p a share bid provides cash immediately rather than some time in the future, even though it is a big discount to NAV.

St Mark Homes (SMAP) reported a fall in full year revenues from £324,000 to £216,000 and there was a loss of £170,000, compared with a profit of £114,000. Management is planning to refocus on developing family housing. Net assets were £5.45m (123p a share) at the end of December 2020. The share price is 87.5p (85p/90p), which values St Mark Homes at £3.86m.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) has originated new loans of £247m so far this year. That means that customers owe £1.8bn. In the four months to April 2021, customer deposits increased by 10% to £2.6bn. There were £1.2bn of assets under management at the end of April.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) increased its NAV from 50.17p a share to 61.05p a share in the 12 months to February 2021. That includes a revaluation that reflects the March disposal proceeds for Anthesis Consulting. Interim revenues fell from £271,000 to £198,000, while pre-tax profit fell from £1.28m to £1m, due to a lower level of unrealised gains. There was £1m in the bank at the end of February and this increased to £2.64m after the latest disposal.

Oberon Investments (OBE) has acquired financial planning services provider Smythe House for £300,000 in cash and shares. Up to £233,000 more could become payable dependent on performance. That increases assets under administration by £40m. At the end of March 2021, Oberon had assets under administration of £550m and it reached more than £600m by May 2021. In the year to March 2021, revenues were 240% higher at £3.75m and momentum continues. Broking subsidiary Oberon Capital has been adding clients, including finnCap and MyHealthChecked.

TruSpine Technologies (TSP) has completed its second round of testing for the screwless, spinal stabilisation system Cervi-LOK. It took two surgeons in New York an average of 15 minutes to implant Cervi-LOK on cadavers. That is one-third of the time for other technology. The feedback was positive. There is another round of testing and clearance could be obtained as early as September. An additional £78,000 has been raised at 10p a share.

CBD products supplier Sativa Wellness Group Inc (SWEL) increased first quarter revenues by 377% to £1.37m and gross profit by 234% to £707,000. The loss has been reduced to 0.3p a share.

Ben Richardson has been appointed chief executive of SulNOX Group (SNOX) and Tony Granger becomes full-time chief administration officer. Nigel Armit is no longer finance director. Radu Forescu becomes chairman.

Good Energy (GOOD) has repaid £11.5m of Good Energy Bonds II and that will save annual interest charges of £600,000. The remaining loans total £4.9m and these should be repaid by the end of 2022.

Love Hemp Group (LIFE) raised £2.35m at 3.5p a share. The cash will fund marketing for CBD and hemp products. Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) raised £1.16m at 7.5p a share (with a warrant exercisable at 15p attached). The cash will be invested in non-fungible token and open finance sectors.

Mayflower Capital Investments has increased its stake in Altona Real Earths (ANR) from 14.1% to 29.5%. Ashok Patel has taken a 5.03% stake in Quetzal Capital (QTZ).

Watchstone Group (WTG) is seeking shareholder approval to cancel its AIM quotation at its AGM on 29 June.

AIM

Trellus Health (TRLS) intends to provide personalised care for people with chronic conditions with the initial focus being inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It has an exclusive licence for the commercialisation of the GRITT (Gaining Resilience Through Transition) methodology developed by the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. The company raised £28.5m at 40p a share. The share price jumped to 65p on the first day of trading, which values Trellus Health at £105m.

Medical devices developer Belluscura (BELL) has gained FDA clearance for its portable oxygen concentrator (POC) and it raised £17.5m – the company was originally seeking £15m of new money at 45p a share, which was in the middle of the expected range of 42p-48p. The shares ended the first day of trading at 53p.

Trading continues to be ahead of expectations at franchised lettings agency Belvoir (BLV). Management service fees 22% higher in the first four months of this year, while financial services income is 24% ahead.

Iodine producer Iofina (IOF) reported an increase in 2020 pre-tax profit from $1m to $1.3m on barely changed revenues of $29.7m. Lower interest charges and higher iodine prices will help Iofina to improve profit to $4.4m this year.

Eqtec (EQT) has raised £16m at 1.5p a share. This will finance repowering of plants in Italy and Croatia using the company’s gasification technology, plus investment in UK projects. This has led to a 26% upgrade in 2022 earnings to 0.1 eurocents a share.

MAIN MARKET

Zegona Communications (ZEG) will return £335m in cash to shareholders following the takeover of Euskaltel. The stake Zegona owns in Euskatel is equivalent to 170p a share and the cash distribution will be 153p a share. The rest of the cash is likely to fund another investment.

Kanabo Group (KNB) is raising £1m at 22p a share, which was a 10% premium to the market price. Kanabo is investing £750,000 in a pre-IPO placing by Hellenic Dynamics, a medical cannabis cultivator. A reverse takeover of an AIM shell is envisaged. There is also an agreement with Northern Greece-based Hellenic that could lead to a deal to purchase up to 1,000kg a year of cannabis flowers with pre-defined THC or CBD levels.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 26 April 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Shepherd Neame (SHEP) in common with other brewers and pub companies has been hard hit by the closure of pubs. Monthly cash burn during pub closures is £1.5m-£2m. Unsurprisingly, interim revenues slumped from £79m to £55.3m, while an underlying pre-tax profit of £4.88m was turned into an underlying loss of £4.81m. Bottled beer sales were one-quarter higher as people bought the bottles for home consumption. Net debt was £92.4m at the end of December 2020 and had reached £96.5m by the end of March. More than 200 pubs with gardens have reopened and all 316 will be open by 17 May.

Revenues fell by one-third to £50.7m at brewer Adnams (ADB) in 2020. Online sales were 245% higher. This led to a loss of £4.3m. Beer volumes fell by 23% and spirits volumes by 31%. There is no dividend and reduced investment meant that net debt was reduced.

Gunsynd (GUN) has invested £50,000 in the unquoted Media Tech SPAC at 4p a share. The SPAC raised £1.64m and it plans to float in the second half of 2021. Riverfort Global Capital and Sure Valley Ventures are involved in the SPAC, which is focused on media and technology investments, and the latter might want to reverse one of its investments into the company. The sale of shares in Empress Royalty and Eagle Mountain raised £218,000 for Gunsynd.

John Mahtani, who is chief executive of Media Tech SPAC, has increased his stake in Quetzal Capital (QTZ) to 6.08%, while Chris Akers has raised his stake to 15%.

NFT Investments (NFT) has made its first investment. A $1m investment has been made in AEON International, which develops technology for the luxury fashion industry. Hong Kong-based AEON has a customer base that includes Gucci and Louis Vuitton. The AUTHENTIQUE subsidiary offers NFT-based verification technology in order to combat counterfeit goods. A product is being developed that would use unique fashion NFTs and smart contracts to enable fashion brands to earn royalties when a product is resold. NFT is paying its board and management in cryptocurrency.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) says the Hellyer mine generated gross revenues of $17.9m and net profit of $4.8m in the first quarter of 2021.

Interim sales of Wheelsure Holdings (WHLP) more than halved from £116,000 to £56,000, although management expects the second half to be stronger. The interim loss increased from £75,000 to £117,000. Since the end of the interim period, a further £50,000 has been raised and a government loan of the same amount secured. Management is seeking new markets for its rail safety equipment.

Chapel Down Group (CDGP) has completed the disposal of Curious Drinks and each of the minority shareholders will receive 1.57 Chapel Down shares for each Curious share they owned. This has resulted in 1.26 million additional shares being issued.

Watchstone Group (WTG) is seeking to switch from AIM to the Apex segment of Aquis. This should happen on 30 April. Watchstone is classified as a cash shell and trading in the shares would be suspended on AIM on 4 May if no acquisition had been made. The board is pursuing litigation relating to past businesses. This could result in cash being returned to shareholders. Watchstone is also seeking new investments.

Valereum Blockchain (VLRM) has purchased bitcoin mining hardware and they should be up and running in the US within one month. The plan is to have mining operations in a range of geographies.

Indorse, in which Coinsilium (COIN) has a 10% stake, has released a digital analysis tool, which scans the data on NFTs and their underlying assets. Coinsilium also owns 14.12% of the IND tokens in circulation.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has filed its drilling plans for the Red Setter project in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. There could be up to 30,000 metres of drilling over four years.

Tyndall Investment Management has taken a 6.85% stake Oncology treatments developer Incanthera (INC) and directors and employees have also added to their stakes at process between 13p a share and 13.5p a share.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) has generated £3m from the sale of shares in Secure Trust Bank (STB) at £12 a share. The stake has been reduced to 4.4%.

Veni Vidi Vici (VVV) has raised £220,000 at 50p a share. Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised an additional £30,000 at 3.9p a share. A subscription at 85p a share has provided Startup Giants (SUG) with £190,000.

SulNOx Group (SNOX) has moved to the Apex segment of the market.

AIM

Grease management services provider Filta (FLTA) has been hit by the closure of restaurants and venues, particularly in the US. Revenues fell by one-third last year and the company fell into loss. Trading levels are moving back to previous levels, but the progress depends on the reopening of some of the larger US venues and stadia. There should be a return to profit this year, but it will take until 2022 for a profit to exceed past levels.

The was another positive trading statement from telecoms billing and customer relationship management software provider Cerillion (CER) following a first half of record orders.

Nu-Oil and Gas (NUOG) will lose its AIM-quotation on 5 May because it has not completed a takeover. There is a proposed acquisition of Guardian Barriers IP and Guardian Maritime, but if this goes ahead the plan is to obtain a standard listing. Guardian has developed a product that can be retrofitted to ships in order to prevent pirates from boarding vessels.

Churchill China (CHH) was still profitable in 2020, but pre-tax profit slumped from £11.2m to £800,000. There was £1.8m of cash generated from operations and net cash was £14m at the end of 2020. There is no dividend. Sales of hospitality ceramics halved during the year.

Cora Gold Ltd (CORA) has announced results from its latest drilling campaign at the Sanankoro gold project in southern Mali. The initial results suggest that there could be a significant increase in the DCF valuation of the project, which was £37.8m. The drilling should be completed by the end of July and there will be continuing news flow over the coming months.

MobilityOne (MBO) is not going ahead with the proposed acquisition of Tanjung Pinang Resources.

Team (TEAM) has decided not to make an offer for Tavistock Investments (TAVI).

MAIN MARKET

MGC Pharmaceuticals (MXC) is acquiring Israeli clinical research company MediCaNL in shares for up to A$6m and it will be used to run the company’s clinical trials. That will reduce costs and lead times. Three clinical trials are planned for cannabis-based treatments in 2021.

Town Centre Securities (TOWN) has collected or deferred 92% of the due rent of £5.1m in the latest quarter. The deferred element is £600,000. The other £400,000 remains due and discussions with tenants are ongoing. Since last March, there is £1.8m of rents that remain due. The company has sold the Thornton’s Chambers property in Leeds.

Interim revenues of J Smart Contractors (SMJ) declined from £9.25m to £5.75m, but costs declined at a higher rate so pre-tax profit improved from £265,000 to £890,000. Net cash was £11.1m at the end of January 2021. The interim dividend is unchanged at 0.95p a share. Building materials costs are rising and a lull in contracting work will hit profit. Management believes that property assets should have retained their value even though a valuation will not take place until the end of the year. NAV is £99.6m, while the market capitalisation is £52m.

Standard list shell Marwyn Acquisition Company III (MAC3) has raised £12m from an issue of A shares and is considering a £200m fundraising.

Tirupati Graphite (TGR) has opened its second mine at the Vatomina project in Madagascar. The processing plant will be commissioned in the second quarter of 2021. Last week. £10m in and oversubscribed placing at 90p a share. That is double last year’s flotation price.

Wildcat Petroleum (WCAT) has signed two memoranda of understanding. The first is with Crown Energy for its participation in a future initial coin operation by Wildcat. A model to monetise hydrocarbon blocks based on blockchain technology. Crown has blocks in Madagascar, South Africa and Iraq. Nabirm Global has a Namibian exploration licence and the deal is the same as with Crown.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 6 April 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Good Energy (GOOD) says that customer numbers have remained stable since September. The 2020 figures will be published on 13 April. There was £18.1m in the bank at the end of 2020. Good has restructured its two renewable generation debts into one debt facility of £39.8m.

Arbuthnot Banking Group (ARBB) has completed the acquisition of vehicle finance provider Asset Alliance Group for £10.1m, which is 50% of the estimated fair value of £20.2m. Arbuthnot raised £8.6m by selling shares in Secure Trust, in which it retains a 5.74% stake.

Greencare Capital (GRE) is investing £100,000 in Clearly Supplements in the form of a 5% convertible loan. The conversion price is a 30% discount to a listing price. Clearly has developed a range of products and is establishing distribution in Asia.

Gunsynd (GUN) has sold three million shares in Rogue Baron (SHNJ) and raised £120,000. Gunsynd still owns 25% of the spirits brands developer and Chris Akers has taken a 3.48% stake. It also has £111,464 of convertible loan notes in Rogue Baron.

TruSpine Technologies (TSP) has raised £585,000 at 10p a share with each share coming with a warrant exercisable at 15p a share. A further £165,000 may be raised. The cash will fund the FDA application and commercial launch for Cervi-LOK.

Interim revenues of Love Hemp Group (LIFE) jumped from £426,000 to £2.38m. There was a loss of £962,000. There was net cash of £79,000 at the end of 2020. The company is moving into new facilities in south London in the middle of this year. Capacity will increase to 500,000 units of cannabidiol CBD products each month.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) did not generate any revenues in the six months to December 2020. There was a £60,000 loss, although cash used in operating activities was £141,000.

Altona Rare Earths (ANR) can acquire a 71% interest in the owner of the Nankoma rare earths project in Uganda. There is an option to acquire a 51% stake for £1 by the end of June. The option fee is £25,000 in cash and 250,000 ordinary shares. The stake can be increased to 71% by the issue of £15,000 worth of shares.

S-Ventures (SVEN) has reported figures for the period from its formation on 6 July 2020 to the end of January 2021. There was a £60,000 cash outflow from operations and the company made two investments with another one made since January.

Optiva Securities has been approved as a corporate adviser.

AIM

Parsley Box (MEAL) has got off to a disappointing start on AIM after raising £5m at 200p a share. The shares ended the first day of trading at 185p, before recovering to 187.5p. Parsley Box has a strong brand position in its market niche and Covid-19 lockdowns have helped it to grow its customer base. The company has a range of more than 60 single portion meals, that can be stored in a cupboard and do not have to put in a fridge or freezer. Parsley Box makes more than 900,000 deliveries per month and demand has increased due to Covid-19. There are more than 500,000 registered users and 154,000 of these active customers at the beginning of this year.

ActiveOps (AOM) is a supplier of management process automation software and it got off to a good start after it floated on AIM. The share price has risen from the placing price of 168p to 190p. No new money was raised in the float and there is £8m in the bank. ActiveOps is losing money but its is generating cash. Once customers are gained, they increase their spending over a number of years and this will be supplemented by new customer wins.

Destiny Pharma (DEST) announced positive results of the phase 2b clinical study on the use of XF-73 nasal gel for the prevention of post-surgical infections. The next step will be the design of a phase III study. Discussions are being arranged with the FDA in the US.

Gfinity (GFIN) has completed its strategic review and has decided to continue with its existing strategy of focusing on higher margin revenues. Interim revenues more than trebled and the operating loss fell by nearly three-quarters to £900,000. There is £1.8m in the bank.

Arena Events (ARE) has raised a further £11m at 14p a share, having raised £9.5m at 10p a share one year earlier. The cash will enable management to bid for strategic assets, including Aztec Shaffer, a US company in Chapter 11.

K3 Business Technology (KBT) has written £16.9m off its intangible assets. Ongoing revenues dipped from £50.1m to £48.8m and the software provider made a small profit in the year to November 2020. Recurring revenues are three-quarters of the total.

Itaconix (ITX) increased revenues from $1.29m to $3.29m in 2020. Increased use of its sustainable polymers in detergents, odour control and personal care products is enabling revenues to grow and they will rise further this year. Itaconix is still losing money but it has the cash it requires for the medium-term.

Lawyer Ince Group (INCE) has agreed a £17m, three-year financing arrangement with Investec which replaces the £10m facility with Barclays.

Recent AIM admission TEAM (TEAM) is proposing an all-share offer for Tavistock Investments (TAVI) and shareholders owning 14% of Tavistock have indicated support for the offer from the investment manager.

Energy supplier Yu Group (YU.) generated better than expected 2020 revenues of £101.5m and the loss was reduced. Net cash was £11.7m at the end of 2020. This leaves management in a strong position to increase the scale of the business. This year there will be full contributions from customer books acquired last year. Average monthly new bookings were £10.3m in the second half of 2020.

Time Out (TMO) has raised £17m at 35p a share. This should supply working capital until November 2022.

MAIN MARKET

Macfarlane Group (MACF) is paying up to £4.5m for Cornwall-based protective packaging supplier Carters Packaging. In the year to March 2020, Carters made a pre-tax profit of £500,000 on revenues of £4.2m.

MasMovil has launched a bid for Euskatel, in which Zegona Communications (ZEG) has a 21.4% stake. This values the target at €2bn and the Zegona shareholding at €428m. That puts a value of 170p a share on Zegona.

InnovaDerma (IDP) reported a one-fifth decline in interim revenues to £4.1mand a more than trebled loss of £1m. Management expects trading to be uncertain for the rest of the financial year. The recent fundraising will help to keep the business on a sound footing while it waits for a more substantial recovery.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 29 March 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

New Apex segment entry Samarkand (SMK) has got off to a strong start. At one point, shares were changing hands at 142p, against the placing price of 115p, but they ended the week at 123.5p (120p/127p). There was £15.4m raised after expenses. The company has developed e-commerce software technology known as Nomad. There are a number of modules and these can be used by clients to sell their products in China. There are 105 special cross-border e-commerce zones in China. This market is expected to reach £138bn in 2021. Samarkand also sells its own brands in China and some of the money raised will be used to buy other brands.

Incanthera (INC) has raised £1.14m at 12p a share. This will provide enough cash until the middle of 2022. There are discussions ongoing with two potential partners for the Sol skin cancer prevention product.

Imperial X (IMPP) has announced its intention to gain a standard listing and raise up to £1.5m. The company will change its name to Cloudbreak Discovery.

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has secured a £40m investment from Equitix Investment Management. In return the freehold of the South Wales centre will be transferred and there will be other security. There will be an initial investment of £25m with the rest paid in three equal instalments. The cash will be used for investing in infrastructure. The current debt of £18.6m will be repaid.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) generated flat operating income of £72.5m, while there was a £1.1m loss. Management is optimistic about a strong rebound if the government continues with its current roadmap out of lockdown. There is a growing demand for lending.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) had NAV of 57.97p a share at the end of February 2021. That is before the sale of the investment in Anthesis for £1.15m. That leaves the company with £2.64m in cash.

In the first 18 days of March Bin 1301, a bar in Washington DC where Rogue Baron (SHNJ) has a stake, generated sales of $35,330, nearly double the same time the previous year. That is despite Covid restrictions.

SulNOx Group (SNOX) has appointed A and S International as a distributor of lubrication and bioremediation products.

EPE Special Opportunities (ESO) had an NAV of 437.63p a share at the end of January 2021, which was a 38% increase on the year before thanks to the strong performance of the Luceco (LUCE) share price. EPE is considering raising more cash through a loan note issue. That would provide further cash for investment.

Altona Rare Earths (ANR) has secured a memorandum of understanding for the acquisition of a rare earths mining project in Mozambique. The plaln is to buy 70% of the Monte Muambe rare earths project, via an earn-in.

First Sentinel has resigned as corporate adviser to Block Commodities (BLCC) after less than one month in the position. Block has entered into an option in partnership with Century Cobalt Corporation to acquire two million seeds, which can be used to produce medicinal grade cannabis. Block would have to issue more than 142.8 million shares at 0.07p each if the option is taken up.

Chris Akers has increased his stake in Quetzal Capital (WENP) from 15.2% to 17.2%.

Upper Thames Holdings has changed its name to Valereum Blockchain (VLRM).

S-Ventures (SVEN) has applied for an OTCQB quotation in the US.

AIM

Hormonal disease treatments developer Diurnal (DNL) says that Chronocourt, also known as Efmody could gain approval in the EU by the summer and that could enable a commercial launch in some European markets in the third quarter. Chronocourt/Efmody is a modified release hydrocortisone used to treat adult and adolescent patients with congenital adrenal hyperplasia, which is caused by a block in cortisol production. Potential sales are greater than for Alkindi, which is aimed at children.

A potential management buyout for Cambria Automobiles (LON: CAMB) at 80p a share would value the motor dealer at £80m. This is a premium of more than one-fifth to the previous market price.

Digital healthcare company Cambridge Cognition (COG) substantially reduced its loss in 2020 and is on course to move into profit this year. Revenues increased and expenses were reduced. There is a strong order book. There was £3m in the bank at the end of 2020. Voice-based service NeuroVocalix is set to be launched this year.

Cyber security firm ECSC (ECSC) grew recurring revenues by 22% to £2.4m last year. Even so, total revenues fell 4% to £5.7m due to a tough second quarter. The loss fell from £639,000 to £153,000. Net cash is £1.1m. There has been a good start to the new year with a clutch of contract wins.

STM Group (STM) has sold its trust and company services business for £2.45m plus net assets at completion of around £570,000. This has been non-core for some time. This will reduce short-term earnings – although there could be some cost savings – but the company can focus on pension administration and life assurance.

Judges Scientific (JDG) continued its record of increasing the ongoing dividend with a 10% increase to 55p a share. Pre-tax profit fell from £17m to £13.7m in 2020 and it could recover to £16m this year.

MJ Hudson (MJH) managed organic revenue growth of 3.6% in the first half, even though there was a lack of new fund launches. Cross-selling is paying off. The North American operations are more significant following recent acquisitions. Further acquisitions will help to increase the scale of the business.

Chariot Oil and Gas (CHAR) is acquiring AEMP, an African renewable energy developer, for up to $2m. There are discussions with mine operators that require 500MW of electricity.

MAIN MARKET

Foams manufacturer Zotefoams (ZTF) almost maintained its pre-tax profit last year thanks to strong sales to the footwear sector. Revenues were 2% ahead at £82.7m, but pre-tax profit was 5% lower at £8.3m. The final dividend is 4.27p a share. The new factory in Poland has started production and capital investment should be lower this year. Net debt was £35.6m at the end of 2020 and this figure should fall this year. This year pre-tax profit should improve to £9.3m.

LED lighting and wiring accessories supplier Luceco (LSE: LUCE) more than doubled 2020 pre-tax profit from £15.8m to £34m, even though revenues barely increased. Margins improved significantly, but there is still potential to improve LED operating margins. A strong second half offset the more difficult first half. The dividend is 6.2p a share. Net debt has fallen to £18.3m.

Oxilio has decided to exercise its option with drug developer Nuformix (NFX) to licence NXP001 for oncology indications. A licence agreement is being worked on. Once completed it will trigger a second upfront payment. Future royalties for any commercial treatments are capped at £2m a year.

Books publisher Quarto Group Inc (QRT) reported a dip in revenues from $135.8m to $126.9m, while adjusted pre-tax profit improved from $5.1m to $7.9m. Capitalised development costs were reduced from $23.8m to $20.3m, although the amortisation charge was higher at $28.6m. Strong cash flow combined with a share issue helped reduce net debt from $50.5m to $19.7m.

Dukemount Capital (DKE) is moving into the flexible power sector. A 50%-owned joint venture called HKSB will develop two 11KV gas peaking facilities that will produce 10MW for a total cost of £6.25m. The plan is to secure 15-year, CPI-linked contracts for each site.

Residential property developer One Heritage Group (OHG) had net assets of 9.25p a share at the end of 2020. There was an interim loss.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 1 March 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Incanthera (INC) says that it is prioritising discussions with two global cosmetic companies as potential partners for Sol, a sun cream that prevents skin cancer. Incanthera is also assessing the potential for using the technology to develop other products.

Sativa Wellness (SWEL) plans to raise C$4m through a placing of units at C$0.07875 each. Each unit consists of one share one-half of a warrant exercisable at C$0.105 each. The cash will provide working capital and investment for a new health screening service. Sativa has opened ten Covid-19 testing facilities. A dispute with Dragonfly Biosciences has been settled.

World High Life (LIFE) is submitting a novel food dossier to the Food Standards Agency. This is part of the move to regulation of the CBD market in the UK. The dossier includes pre-clinical results.

AfriAg Global (AFRI) intends to acquire the shares in medicinal cannabis pharma company Apollon Formularies that it does not own, and this will be classed as a reverse takeover. Shares will be issued to the Apollon shareholders. AfriAg is also raising £2.5m at 5p a share.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) is selling its Tay mortgage portfolio to a subsidiary of OneSavings Bank for £53.8m, which is equivalent to 97.9% of the outstanding loans. Arbuthnot has already announced that it intends to pay a 21p a share special dividend, which replaces the 2019 dividend declared in March 2020. Arbuthnot will make a loss in 2020 so there will be no dividend.

Gunsynd (GUN) has invested £65,000 in a convertible loan issue by B2B pool betting platform Low6. Gunsynd had already invested £200,000 last December. AIM-quoted Pires Investments (PIRI) has also increased its investment in Low6. It invested a further £35,000, having also invested £200,000 at the same time as Gunsynd. Low6 is expected to float during the second quarter of 2021 and Canaccord Genuity is its broker.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) says that the latest exploration at Specimen Hill reaffirms the drill targets and informs plans for higher density drilling, so that a resource can be calculated. Tectonic says that the Deep Blue Minerals diamonds joint venture with AIM-quoted Kazera Global Investments produced 220 carats in January. Higher grade materials will be mined during the rest of the year.

SulNOx Group (SNOX) says that Bureau Veritas has certified that SulnoxEco Fuel Conditioner complies with European standards. This means that SulNox’s products can be used for 70% of the hydrocarbon market. Management is confident that production can be scaled up.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has signed an agreement with ASX-listed Evolution Mining for the evaluation and potential processing of lead and silver rich stockpiles at the Sunbeam project in North Queensland. Evolution has a processing plant 80km away from Sunbeam, which has stockpiles from past mining. The processing would be done on a cost and revenue share basis with NQ. This could finance further exploration. NQ says that it should qualify for the Green Economy Mark when it moves to the standard list.

Lombard Capital (LCAP) has received shareholder approval for refocusing its strategy on property investment and development.

Almon I Holding has cut its stake in Coinsilium (COIN) to below 3%. It increased its stake to 3.68% in January 2020.

Altona Energy has changed its name to Altona Rare Earths (ANR).

AIM

Trading platform operator Aquis Exchange (AQX) moved into profit last year thanks to high levels of trading on its platform. Aquis had been expected to lose money in 2020 but it is now expected to make a £200,000 profit on revenues of £11m. EU trades have been moved to the Paris operation and London has restarted trading in Swiss shares.

VR Education (VRE) continues to grow the revenues of its ENGAGE VR platform. Group revenues increased by 38%, while ENGAGE revenues rose by 550% thanks to strong demand for virtual events. The US provides significant potential. VR is still hiring additional people, although the focus is more on marketing. VR is still losing money, but the cash burn has been reduced this year. Management is targeting 100,000 monthly users by 2025.

Hormonal disease treatments developer Diurnal (DNL) says Alkindi sales in the UK and Germany grew by 29% in the first half but the timing of purchases in other markets meant that overall revenues barely increased. Chronocourt could gain European approval in March and the US regulatory pathway for DITEST, an oral testosterone formulation, has been set out. Net cash was £20.3m at the end of December 2020.

K3 Business Technology (KBT) has sold its managed services business for £14.7m. The business made a pre-tax profit of £1.2m last year, but the disposal proceeds will wipe out net debt and enable the repayment of the £3m shareholder loan due in June. There should still be more than £35m of recurring revenues.

Interim trading at transport software and services provider Tracsis (TRCS) was active and it was not far below the levels in the six months to January 2020 prior to Covid-19 becoming a factor. Revenues declined from £26.4m to £22m and management believes Covid-19 reduced the figure by £6m. New rail contracts are being won, but the lack of events hit the data and events division. Cash has improved from £17.9m to £21m.

Revenues fell by one-third at President Energy (PPC) in 2020 due to lower oil prices. President did generate $10m of free cash flow and that helped to reduce net debt. President plans to drill seven wells this year and that could increase production by one-third. Anew subsidiary, Atome, will develop hydrogen and ammonia production.

Shield Therapeutics (STX) has raised £25m at 30p a share and could raise a further £4.2m via an open offer. The cash will finance the new strategy of directly launching iron deficiency treatment Accrufer in the US.

Yew Grove REIT (YEW) has agreed a new lease for Gateway Three building, East Wall Road, Dublin with the Electricity Supply Board. The new lease lasts five years. Along with three rent reviews, this takes the increase in annual rents to €470,000 this year.

Best of the Best (BOTB) has concluded its strategic review and it has reemphasised its online strategy. finnCap has upgraded its pre-tax profit forecast to £14m.

Benchmark Holdings (BMK) increased first quarter revenues by 18% to £29m and it is on course to reduce its loss this year, prior to moving into profit in 2021-22. The advanced nutrition business contributed significant growth in the first quarter.

MAIN MARKET

Online auctions provider Auction Technology Group (ATG) raised £247.4m at 600p a share, while existing shareholders pocketed £51.5m after the over-allotment option was exercised. The company was valued at £600m. There was a 30% gain to 780p a share at the end of the first week of trading. The company is involved with three main auction markets: arts and antiques, industrial and commercial and consumer surplus and returns. It has six main auction marketplace brands and trade magazine Antiques Trade Gazette. Low double-digit organic revenue growth is anticipated for the next few years.

Town Centre Securities (TOWN) announced a 1.75p a share interim dividend, even though this is not covered by earnings. Lower car park income meant that there was a sharp decline in interim profit. The NAV was 286p a share at the end of December 2020 and it is not expected to decline by more than 2% by the year-end in June. This is more than double the current share price.

CML Microsystems (CML) is paying 50p a share to investors following the sale of its storage division. This will cost £8.28m. the cash should be received before the end of March.

Strong demand for diagnostic products more than offset weakness in the networking division of BATM Advanced Communication (BVC) and enabled 2020 revenues to grow by 49% to $184m. Pre-tax profit jumped from $5.2m to $13.6m. Revenues are expected to decline this year, but pre-tax profit is forecast to improve from $13.6m to $17.3m. This may depend on the timing of the sale of the NGSoft business and it also assumes no additional sales of ventilators this year. Longer-term, revenues will build up from virtual networking technology NFVTime. There is also potential for dividends.

Construction services provider NMCN (NMCN) says that two contracts in the water division could lead to an additional loss of £5m in 2020. These costs relate to delays. The total loss for 2020 could be up to £22m. The additional cash costs will be spread over 28 months. Shareholders are being asked to agree to an extension of the company’s borrowing limit.

Aircraft lessor Avation (AVAP) took a $46.7m impairment charge on its aircraft and a $12.9m credit loss in the six months to December 2020. The NAV was 174p a share at the end of 2020. A full year loss of $30m is expected before the exceptional write-offs.

Cannabis-based products developer Cellular Goods (CBX) raised £13m in its offer at 5p a share. The share price jumped to 19p on the first day of dealings.

Potash project developer Emmerson (EML) raised £5.5m at 5.75p a share. Emmerson has a mining licence for the Khemisset potash project in Morocco. The cash will be used for the detailed design of the mine and the phased development of the project.

Shell company Stranger Holdings (STHP) is pushing ahead with the proposed reverse takeover of the Recyclus Group. A prospectus is being drafted.

Packaging supplier Macfarlane Group (MACF) increased its 2020 profit by 10% to £13m on a 2% increase in revenues to £230m. The full year dividend has been increased from 0.69p a share to 2.55p a share.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 1 February 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Property investment company Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP) more than doubled its interim profit. In the six months to October 2020, rental income was 7% lower at £3.22m, while pre-tax profit was 121% higher at £674,000. The profit improvement was due to lower interest charges, offset by a £200,000 write down on assets held for sale. Rent collections have exceeded 80% each quarter. There were £131,000 of rent concessions written off in the period. NAV is £32.2m. Net debt was £49.6m at the end of October 2020. Loan to value is 53%. There is no interim dividend.

Sativa Wellness (SWEL) plans to achieve UK FSA Novel Foods accreditation by the end of March. This will enable the company to sell CBD products under the Goodbody brand and white labels. An online store will be launched. It will also be completing the integration and simplification of the businesses. Management believes the company can become cash generative from operating businesses this year. Chief executive Henry Lees-Buckley has stepped down from the holding company board.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has resumed exploration at the Beaconsfield mine, which has 483,000 ounces of JORC compliant mineral resources.

Gunsynd (GUN) increased its stake in Rincon Resources to 17.3%. The company’s employee benefit trust is subscribing for 15 million shares at par and that will raise £12,750. That equates to a 3.7% stake.

World High Life (LIFE) raised £566,000 at 1p a share. First quarter revenues of Love Hemp were 13% ahead of the previous quarter.

Altona Energy (ANR) raised £523,000 at 6.5p a share, although £355,000 is still to be received. The cash will enable the company to complete due diligence on two rare earths mining projects in Africa and a move to the standard list. Two more possible acquisitions of rare earths assets are being negotiated.

Early Equity (EEQP) raised £243,000 at 0.5p a share.

Eastinco Mining and Exploration (EM.P) executive chairman has acquired 650,000 shares at 2.0308p each, which takes his stake to 6%. Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) chairman and chief executive Sir Henry Angest bought 3,161 non-voting shares in the financial services provider. He owns 56.1% of the voting shares and 64.9% of the non-voting shares.

AIM

Insolvency-related litigation firm Manolete Partners (MANO) has warned that the pipeline of new cases has slowed because of the government’s Covid-19 support for businesses. Case enquiries have fallen sharply, and this is expected to remain the case until the end of March at least. Manolete has already completed twice as many cases as in the year to March 2020. Gross cash collected from cases was £9.3m up until the end of December and the company’s share is £4.8m compared with cash overheads of £3.2m.  Full year realised profit will be higher than expected but the increase in unrealised gains will not be as much as anticipated. There may be a small second half profit. Mithaq Capital took a 16.1% stake on the day of the trading statement. Three non-executives bought shares.

Ideagen (IDEA) increased its annual recurring revenues to £54.8m at the end of October 2020 with organic growth of 7%. The document management and compliance software supplier says that 83% of its revenues are recurring. It is on course to improve full year pre-tax profit from £14.3m to £17.2m.

Dekel Agri-Vision (DKL) has completed a £3.5m fundraising at 5p a share. Dekel plans to spend £1.1m in cash and shares acquiring a further 16.7% of the raw cashew nut processing project in Tiebissou, Cote d’Ivoire. That will take the stake to 70.7%. The rest of the cash will fund the ongoing business.

Cloud-based PCI-compliant payment services provider PCI-Pal (PCIP) increased interim revenues by 56% to £3.2m. Total annual contract value has risen to £8.3m. Net cash was £2.1m at the end of 2020.

Beximco Pharma (BXP) increased interim revenues from £112.6m to £125.8m. Export sales were flat. Pre-tax profit increased from £15.5m to £19.4m. Beximco has received the first consignment of five million doses of the Oxford/ AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine.

CIP Merchant Capital (CIP) has rejected a potential 50p a share cash bid by Corporation Financière Européenne S.A. That compares with the last quoted NAV of 78.05p a share.

MAIN MARKET

Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing (BMY) continued to trade strongly with revenues ahead of expectations. Investec has upgraded forecast 2020-21 revenues by 4% and earnings per share by 19% to 14.1p a share, which is still down on last year. There should be net cash of £50m by the end of February 2021.

IT firm Triad Group (TRD) says that results in the second half will be well ahead of the same period last year.

Associated British Engineering (ASBE) has still not published its accounts for the year to September 2020. Management is considering opportunities that will help to get the share trading suspension lifted.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 11 January 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Standard list shell Baskerville Capital (BASK) plans to switch its quotation to the Access segment of the Aquis Stock Exchange. This move will happen at the time of the reverse takeover of Oberon Investments, the owner of fund manager MD Barnard. The transfer to the Access segment is expected to happen on 5 February, although this depends on completion of the deal.

Walls and Futures REIT (WAFR) increased its NAV to £3.96m at the end of September 2020. The Southfields property has been sold for £660,000, which was a small discount to the previous book value. The remaining residential property will be sold in the next few months. The company will then concentrate on specialist supported housing.

KR1 (KR1) has sold its remaining holding of FunFair tokens for an average price of 2.0207 cents each. That raised $1.28m, which is more than treble the cost.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) expects the analysis of the aerial magnetic survey of the Red Setter project in Western Australia will be available before the end of the first quarter of 2021.

All Star Minerals (ASMO) continues to review opportunities in the mining sector in Africa. The deal is likely to be funded by a share issue, but more cash will be required.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) non-executive director Nigel boardman has increased his shareholding from 5,020 shares to 11,348 shares. Shepherd Neame (SHEP) director JB Neame has sold 4,000 shares at 690p each and bought back 2,000 shares at 691.5p for an ISA.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised £150,000 in share issues at 5p a share and 5.5p a share. TruSpine Technologies (TSP) is still waiting to receive £250,000 from Evrensel Capital Partners.

Peel Hunt has been approved as an AQSE corporate adviser.

AIM

Capital equipment manufacturer Mpac (MPAC) did better than expected last year although pre-tax profit is still likely to decline from £7.5m to £6.2m. net cash is £5m following the payment of £10m for Switchback last autumn. The order book is worth more than £55m, compared to 2020 revenues of £83m. The focus on healthcare and pharma has helped Mpac.

Judges Scientific (JDG) had a strong second half in 2020 and this has led WH Ireland to increase its 2020 pre-tax profit forecast from £12.1m to £13.5m. The 2021 figure has been maintained at £15.1m. Full year results will be announced on 23 March.

Fashion retailer Joules (JOUL) offset weak high street sales prior to Christmas with strong growth in online sales. Even so, continued uncertainty means that Peel Hunt has reduced its 2020-21 pre-tax profit forecast from £5.4m to £3.5m. Net cash is £13m.

Motor dealer Cambria Automobiles (CAMB) says trading the three months to November 2020 was ahead of the same period last year even though the market remains uncertain.

Wealth management firm Mattioli Woods (MTW) had more than £10bn of client assets by the end of November 2020. Gross discretionary assets under management are £2.9bn. Management is still seeking acquisition opportunities and there is £18m of cash in the bank.

Creo Medical (CREO) has received 510(k) clearance from the FDA for its MicroBlate soft tissue ablation devices. This broadens the range of products with approvals.

AssetCo (ASTO) has acquired a 2.9% stake in investment manager River and Mercantile at 186p a share. This cost £4.7m. There is still around £26m in cash available since the payment from Grant Thornton and after the tender offer to shareholders.

Avingtrans (AVG) is merging its two medical equipment businesses with Australia-based MRI technology developer Magnetica and it will own 59% of the enlarged business after also injecting A$600,000. A further £3.2m investment could increase the stake to 61.2%. The combined business is loss-making but the increased scale will help it to move towards profitability.

Telit Communications (TCM) has ended bid discussions with u-blox, although the potential bidder is still interested in making an offer. An all-share bid of 250p a share was indicated.

Tekmar (TGP) has secured a contract to design and manufacture subsea scour protection for a quay development project, which is worth more than £4m. That will be recognised in this financial year.

IntegraFin has decided not to bid for Nucleus Financial Group (NUC), which increased assets under administration by 8% to £17.4bn in the three months to December 2020. Inflows of funds increased, and outflows fell.

Eqtec (EQT) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Greece-based Nobilis Pro Energy, which will enable Eqtec to be involved in its partner’s pipeline of gasification projects opportunities in Thessalia and central Greece. A joint venture will be formalised.

MAIN MARKET

One Heritage Group (OHG) has acquired a site on Bank Street, Sheffield for £880,000. The final development cost is expected to be £2.9m and gross development value should be £3.6m. The residential developer says that its Burnley development will not be completed until later in the first quarter. Construction of the Waterloo Place development in Salford should commence in the second quarter.

Argo Blockchain (ARB) mined 96 Bitcoin during December. The increase in the bitcoin price means that these are valued at £1.63m. Argo holds 209 Bitcoin. The sharp rise in the share price has led to the exercising of warrants and options. This has raised £1.63m.

Tirupati Graphite (TGR) is on track to commission the Vatomina graphite project in the second quarter and build production to 6,000tpa. Tirupati raised £6m at 45p a share when it floated at the end of last year and the share price has risen to 83p.

Rainbow Rare Earths (RBW) has completed its drilling programme at the Phalaborwa rare earths project under budget and the results are expected before the end of the first quarter.

Pembridge Resources (PERE) has raised £570,000 at 4p each and this should be enough cash to take the company into next year.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 14 December 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Incanthera (INC) says that study results for Sol, a sun cream that prevents skin cancer, have been better than expected. There is significantly greater dermal delivery by Sol compared with four rival products and it was found to be a non-irritant. The cream exceeds bioequivalence compared with oral treatments. A new patent is being filed which will extend the protection until 2041. Incanthera had £433,000 in the bank at the end of September 2020 and outgoings are low. The cash will last well into 2021 Incanthera is seeking a partner to license Sol and launch the product, which could lead to an upfront payment. Incanthera has already licensed potential cancer treatment EP0015 to Ellipses Pharma. There are other earlier stage treatments being developed, including Duo-C, which is a potential treatment for bladder cancer.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) is acquiring vehicle finance provider Asset Alliance, which specialises in coaches and trucks, for £4.1m. Arbuthnot can use its own deposit base to provide finance for the acquisition, which should be earnings enhancing in 2021.

In the year to May 2020, mechanical and engineering services provider Fuel Systems Designs Holdings (FSD) reported a decline in pre-tax profit from £553,000 to £354,000 and a fall in revenues from £21.8m to £19.8m. The decline in revenues came from the power generation division, while water and sewerage revenues were slightly higher. Cash in the bank has improved from £4.8m to £5.96m.

SulNOX (SNOX) has signed a collaboration agreement with Ghana-based Rigworld, which will market the company’s fuel conditioner and heavy fuel emulsifier products in Africa. Rigworld has identified the mining sector as an initial opportunity.

Chris Akers has taken a 4.08% stake in Gunsynd (GUN). Investee company Rincon Resources has had its ASX listing delayed. Pacific Nickel, formerly Malachite, has raised $3.8m for the exploration of nickel projects in the Solomon Islands.

World High Life (LIFE) generated revenues of £1.69m in the year to June 2020. Impairment goodwill of £7.4m increased the full year loss to £12.7m. Management continues to seek further CBD investment opportunities.

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has launched new membership scheme Rutherford Direct. The healthcare plan focuses on cancer cover and provides the cost of treatment and care for people diagnosed with cancer.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has raised £1.75m at 10p a share in order to finance exploration at the Red Setter project in Western Australia. There will also be additional exploration in Queensland.

Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) has signed an agreement with Vietnam-based RedFOX Labs, which will lead to the development of a range of virtual asset and digital collectible marketplaces. It will also cover the trading of non-fungible tokens.

Cairn has been replaced Turner Pope as broker to Primorus Investments (PRIM) as well as nominated adviser. Primorus is leaving Aquis Stock Exchange on 24 December as part of cost saving measures.

AIM

IMImobile (IMO) has agreed a 595p a share bid from Cisco Systems, which values the communications services company at £543m. This is a good add-on service for Cisco.

ULS Technology (ULS) has sold its CAL subsidiary for £27m, so that it can concentrate on its core eConceyancer platform and its digital investment. In the six months to September 2020, the group market share of purchases and sales was slightly lower but remortgage market share rose from 4.8% to 6.8%. The sale of CAL will reduce the numbers, but the mix of business should not change. ULS managed to make a small interim profit on reduced revenues.

Eqtec (EQT) has signed an agreement to acquire full ownership of the Deeside refuse derived fuel project. Eqtec is talking to the local authority and is pursuing additional planning permissions for the site so the company’s gasification technology can be used. Financing is being secured.

Access Intelligence (ACC) has raised £10m in a heavily oversubscribed placing at 80p a share. This cash will fund international expansion for its SaaS products.

Bion (BION) has entered the solar power market and it has agreed to acquire existing solar assets. The company is purchasing a 77% stake in rooftop solar panels that supply 0.95MW of electricity. The total cost will be RM6m. The assets should generate a profit of RM400,000 a year from 2021.

Housebuilder Abbey (ABBY) has recommended a 1575p a share cash offer from Gallagher Holdings for the minority stake it does not own. The Irish housebuilder is valued at £328.8m and the remaining 4.4% shareholding will cost £14.4m.

Roadside convenience retailer Applegreen (APGN) has been approached by its founders and management team with a €5.75 a share cash offer. The independent directors are considering the offer.

Iron deficiency products developer Shield Therapeutics (STX) says that discussions with potential licensees for the US rights to Accrufer will not be completed by the end of the year as had been hoped. Shield would need up to $40m to launch the treatment in the US if it did it on its own. A loan facility will help Shield to have working capital well into next year.

MAIN MARKET

S and U (SUS) says trading in its car finance and property bridging loans businesses has rebounded since the end of July. A background of higher demand and strong used car price growth means that current net receivables are £253m even though there was poor demand earlier in 2020. Third quarter collection rates were 87.5% of due payments. Aspen Bridging has higher net receivables than one year ago.

Tirupati Graphite (TGR) is set to join the standard list on Monday. It is an integrated graphite mining and processing business. Mining has commenced in Madagascar and the Indian processing facility was opened last year. There are plans to move into the graphene market. Management has decades of experience in the graphite industry.

Textile materials and chemicals company HeiQ (HEIQ) has started trading on the standard list following the reversal into Auctus Growth. A placing and subscription raised £60m at 112p a share. The share price ended the week at 118.5p.

CML Microsystems (CML) is selling its storage division so that it can concentrate on its communications division. The disposal to Swissbit will raise $49m in cash and it should be completed early in 2021. Net cash was £7.35m at the end of September 2020.

BATM (BVC) has delivered the first Celitron instrument for the recovery of protein and oils from insects.

Cyprus-focused explorer Chesterfield Resources (CHF) has raised £2.5m from a share issue at 9p, with £2.1m of the cash coming from Polymetal International.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 19 October 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) remains profitable and loan balances have increased by 3% to £1.6bn. Deposit balances are 14% higher at £2.23bn. Assets under management are 4% ahead.

Wine maker Chapel Down (CDGP) has produced a better quality harvest than 2018 and yields are better than expected. More wine can be released for sale next year.

A general meeting has been requisitioned at SulNOx Group (SNOX) by three shareholders. They want to remove the entire board and appoint four new directors.

KR1 (KR1) has generated just over $1m from the sale of tokens in the Polkadot project at $5.12 each. That is a small proportion of the stake and KR1 still owns more than 3.5 million tokens.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) continues to increase production at the Hellyer mine. In the third quarter lead concentrate production was 11,865 tonnes and zinc concentrate production was 4,585 tonnes. Production rates are still increasing.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) reported a reduction in interim revenues from $6.56m to $3.64m. There was a $224,000 outflow from operations.

Altona Energy (ANR) has extended its fundraising until 11 November. The plan is to raise up to £500,000 at 6.5p a share.

Trading has been suspended in the shares of medicinal cannabis company Freyherr International (FRYR) because trading has been difficult, and the auditing of last year’s accounts has not been completed.

VI Mining (VIM) is asking shareholders to approve of the withdrawal from the Aquis Stock Exchange.

Eastinco Mining (EM.P) has published full year and interim figures. The company remains loss-making. There was £173,000 in the bank at the end of June 2020.

TechFinancials (TECH) is stopping the development of its Footies ticketing technology because of the uncertainty surrounding events. It has also ended its investment in Cedex due to lack of cash. All B2B brokerage technology activities will end at the beginning of November. New opportunities are being assessed.

AIM

Synairgen (SNG) is raising up to £87m via a placing and open offer at 175p a share. This will finance a phase III trial for SNG001 for the treatment of Covid-19. That will start before the end of the year. Results are expected in the middle of next year. Synairgen will also invest in scaling up its manufacturing.          

More good news from Touchstone Exploration (TXP) which has made another significant gas discovery in Trinidad. The Chinook-1 discovery is the third in a row. This means that Touchstone should be highly cash generative next year enabling it to fund more exploration.

LiDCO (LID) had already outlined its interim figures in a trading statement so the move into profit thanks to high monitor sales to the NHS was not a surprise. There is likely to be a second half loss, but the heart monitoring equipment supplier will still be profitable for the full year. There have been delays in winning hup recurring revenue contracts, but these revenues have reached an annual rate of £3m. There was £3.1m in the bank at the end of July 2020.

BlueRock Diamonds (BRD) increased production in the third quarter from 3,973 carats one year ago to 5,577 carats. Sales were much lower at 3,803 carats because there was one sale during the quarter. The average price realised has fallen from $432/carat to $330/carat. That was expected due to the change in mix of stones with only one high value stone sold during the period. An updated resource estimate is expected in the near future. BlueRock is hosting a shareholder conference call at 7pm on 22 October. Anyone wanting to participate should go to www.facebook.com/valuethemarkets or www.twitter.com/valuethemarkets.

SkinBioTherapeutics (SBTX) is raising money to accelerate the progress of AxisBiotix, which is involved in the development of food supplements for psoriasis treatment. This could be generating revenues in the year to June 2022. A placing at 16p a share raised £4m with up to £500,000 to come from an open offer at the same price. Some cash will be available to fund development of other microbiome-related products. This cash should last until the end of 2022.

Billing and customer relationship management software provider Cerillion (LSE:CER) says that its year-end order book is at a record level and the full year figures will be slightly better than expected.

ThinkSmart (TSL) is returning A$6.5m of cash to shareholders. There will be a 4.575 cents a share capital reduction and a 1.525 cents a share unfranked dividend. ThinkSmart has around £10m in the bank. The current exchange rate is 55p for each A$1. The distribution is worth £3.6m, so around one-third of the available cash.

Seeing Machines (SEE) is increasing its potential market by developing its driver monitoring system into vehicle occupant monitoring system. This is an additional revenue opportunity of A$350m.

Angling Direct (ANG) managed to stay profitable in the first half as online sales helped to offset the closure of retail sites in the period. The fishing products retailer has a strong balance sheet and shop sales bounced back after reopening. A pre-tax profit of £400,000 is forecast for the full year, rising to £1.5m next year.

Netcall (NET) is acquiring robotic process automation technology company Automagica in order to enhance its contact centre products. Automagica has its own technology. Netcall’s full year revenues increased from £22.9m to £25.1m, while pre-tax profit increased from £1.3m to £1.8m. Margins are improving.

MAIN MARKET

Motor dealer Lookers (LOOK) says third quarter trading was better than expected. New and used car volumes increased by 13.6% compared with the same period the previous year. Lookers has outperformed the market. Aftersales revenues were also higher. Net debt was £22.5m at the end of September 2020.  

Electronic products supplier DiscoverIE (DSCV) says that first half sales fell by 6%, but orders were ahead of sales in September. A dividend will be announced with the interims in November.

Construction and infrastructure firm nmcn (NMCN) has reviewed major contracts and this will lead to a loss this year. The main problem has been water contracts and some of the charges may relate to other periods. This follows the departure of the chief executive and finance director.

Nanoco (NANO) has a cash outflow to £300,000 a month. There is net cash of £5.2m and that should last until July 2022.  The non-cadmium quantum dots technology developer lost £4.9m in the year to July 2020.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 20 July 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

In the year to February 2020, Rutherford Health (RUTH) nearly quadrupled its revenues from £1.47m to £5.61m, although the loss increased from £21.5m to £29.3m. There were three proton beam cancer treatment centres open at the end of the period, but two were not operating for long. They have continued to operate throughout the Covid-19 lockdown period. A fourth is opening in Liverpool later this month. Net cash was £8.6m at the end of February 2020. There is £43.7m of contracted capital expenditure. Negotiations with the NHS should lead to Rutherford helping to deal with the backlog of cancer patients. Management is in contact with the manager of the Woodford stake.

Arbuthnot Banking (ARBB) made a small pre-tax profit in the first half of 2020 after base rate reductions cost it £2.7m and provisions were increased. NAV was 1248p a share. Customer loans were 27% higher (at £1.62bn) than one year before. The private bank business fell into loss, while the Arbuthnot Latham and commercial bank profit contributions declined.

British Honey Company (BHC) has signed a joint venture with Cottisford Ltd, which is a 29% shareholder. The new JV is called Tusmore Collection and each partner will invest up to £1m (initially £100,000) in order to set up a distillery and bonded warehouse in the grounds of the Tusmore Park Estate in Oxfordshire. That will take 18 months. A new whiskey brand will be developed.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has negotiated a new $41m bank facility with ING as part of the refinancing of previous debt. The facility will last for six years. This will reduce the interest costs of the Hellyer mine by $2.5m a year.

Hydro Hotel, Eastbourne (HYDP) reported a slump in interim turnover from £1.55m to £1.18m, while the loss more than doubled from £101,000 to £277,000 in the six months to April 2020. This included a period where the hotel was closed. There was £587,000 in the bank. The hotel reopened in early July.

AfriAg Global (AFRI) has yet to complete the acquisition of Apollon UK, which owns a stake in a Jamaican business that cultivates cannabis and has a licence to process it. There was £98,000 in cash at the end of 2019, as well as £1.17m of investments.

IamFire (FIRE) plans to take a 10% stake in Bio2pure, which owns technology to clean lakes and ponds. Richard Griffiths has acquired a 3.21% stake, while Mantis Hldings, Natural Technology Evolution and Max Capital have each taken a 3.57% shareholding. IamFire acquired 10 million shares (4.39%) in Sport Capital (SCG) in a placing that raised £324,000 at 0.3p a share.

Altona Energy (ANR) has launched a pre-funding campaign via NR Private Market (https://lounge.nrprivatemarket.com). The fundraising should happen in the next few weeks. Altona’s new focus is a rare earth metals project in Malawi. Altona believes that raising money in this way will make it easier for private investors to become involved.

Cadence Minerals (KDNC) says that its investee company European Metals Holdings (EMH) plans a Czech listing given the local interest in the Cinovec project. Cadence owns 16% of EMH.

Veni Vidi Vici (VVV) had £339,000 in the bank at the end of June 2020. As part of a joint venture agreement, the company is responsible for the initial spending of A$300,000 on the Shangri La gold copper silver project in Western Australia. Joint venture partner Goldfields will manage the venture and receive a fee of 10% of expenses.

First Sentinel (FSEN) has raised £200,000 by issuing 200,000 Green Finance preference shares.

PCG Entertainment has changed its name to Upper Thames Holdings (UPPT) and trading in the shares has resumed. The consolidation of 100 shares into one new share has been completed.

Coinsilium Group (COIN) is assessing its investment portfolio as part of its strategic review. It wants to sell the portfolio either by selling the subsidiary that owns the stakes or other transactions.

AIM                                                                      

Digital TV technology Mirada (MIRA) increased continuing revenues by 13% to $13m last year and it generated cash. In the year to March 2020, work was carried out on deployments that should yield growing licence and managed services revenues in the future. Capitalised development spending was $4.3m last year and this was partly financed by the cash generated from operations. Net debt was $5.1m. Lockdown has led to increased consumption and take up of services, but it could delay the finalisation of new contracts.

Background check services provider ClearStar (CLSU) says hiring activity levels in the US have soared following an easing of the lockdown. Even so, first half revenues were still lower despite a 74% rise in June, compared with the weak April level, which is back to the level in February. Interim revenues were $8.9m and net debt was $1.4m at the end of June 2020.

Adamas Finance Asia (ADAM) is raising £3.13m at 25p a share via a placing and open offer and each new share comes with a warrant exercisable at 40p a share. The cash will help to finance additional investments by the pan-Asian investment company. The company’s name will be changed to Jade Road Investments Ltd.

Renalytix AI (RENX) is raising $74.3m from an oversubscribed offer and trading has started on Nasdaq. The offer price was 537p a share and $13.50 per ADS. The cash will be spent on the commercialisation of KidneyIntelX.

TV and film subtitling and dubbing services provider Zoo Digital (ZOO) has weathered the short-term problems related to Covid-19 and started the new financial year strongly. Even though newer content creation has been delayed, older programming is being processed. Zoo should get near to breaking even in the year to March 2021.

Omega Diagnostics (ODX) is expected to move into profit this year, but it is difficult to assess sales of the Visitect CD4 (particularly when it gains WHO prequalification) and Covid-19 tests.

MAIN MARKET

Cadmium-free quantum dots developer Nanoco (NANO) has raised £3.4m at 17.5p a share. This will provide cash until the end of 2021. Nanoco has obtained third party funding for its litigation with Samsung. A successful claim could exceed the current market capitalisation of the company.

Interim revenues were 14% lower at LED lighting supplier Luceco (LUCE) although sales started to stabilise by the end of the period. Gross margins have improved, and overheads cut by 15%. Underlying operating profit increased from £7.2m to £9m.

BATM Advanced Communications (BVC) has launched three new diagnostic kits for Covid-19. Sales will commence by the beginning of the fourth quarter.

Andrew Hore

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