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Ian Pollard – Stagecoach #SGC regional mileage down but fare revenue up

Stagecoach Group plc SGC updates for the year to the 27th April that it has seen further strong trading  in its UK Rail Division, resulting in an increase in expectations for adjusted earnings per share from when interim results were announced in December. The financial performance of UK rail and Virgin rail is ahead of expectations, Regional bus saw a fall of 0.5% in like for like vehicle miles but strangely like-for-like revenue per vehicle mile grew 4.0% and like-for-like revenue per journey also increased 3.6%. which seems to indicate something about fares.

Shield Therapeutics plc STX saw revenue for the year to 31st December grow from £0.6 to £11.9m whilst the annual loss fell from £19.6 million to £19.6 million1.8m. The CEO states that they are now well positioned to deliver further positive news through 2019. A significant highlight for the year was the receipt of £11.0 million upfront  from Norgine in respect of a licence agreement.

Gattaca plc GATC Profit before tax and basic earnings per share for the six months to the end of January each rose by 12% and underlying reported EBITDA by 14%. The interim dividend of 3% which was paid last year is, however, not being repeated this year in line with the revised dividend policy. The Board will consider dividends at the year end but this comes with a warning that if they are resumed it would only be at modest levels.

M. Winkworth plc WINK is pleased with its  results for 2018,  which it achieved in a sales market which it describes as testing. Weaker  sales were compensated for by ongoing growth in the rentals business which was very  successful and now accounts for half of Group revenues. Profit before tax improved slightly to £1.45 million from : £1.38 million in 2017 and the final dividend is to be increased from 7.25p  to 7.45p.

Audioboom Group plc BOOM  reports trading ahead of management expectations with quarterly revenue of c.US$4.6 million, up 180% to a record .US$4.6 million, The CEO is delighted with the first quarter start to 2019. and claims that “the potential is now there to deliver significant shareholder value this year”. with key developments including an enhanced global commercial agreements signed with Spotify a  strong pipeline of content acqusition and other opportunities, including 11 new shows which were signed during the first quarter.

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Brand CEO Alan Green talks Cadence Minerals #KDNC, Audioboom #BOOM & Europa Metals #EUZ on Vox Markets podcast

Brand CEO Alan Green discusses funds, plus Cadence Minerals #KDNC, Audioboom #BOOM & Europa Metals #EUZ with Justin Waite on the Vox Markets podcast. Interview is 16 minutes 28 seconds in.

Ian Pollard – Ted Baker #TBK will continue to be challenged

Ted Baker plc TED group revenue rose by 3.5% in the 28 weeks to the to the 11th August but profit before tax fell by 3.2% and basic earnings per share by 1.8%, so the management did two things. Firstly it increased the interim dividend by 7.8% and secondly it sought refuge in the time honoured excuse of “challenging external trading conditions”, thereby completely ignoring the successful companies which not only face challenging conditions but beat them. Wholesale sales did rise by 10% and e commerce by 24.1%. North America, the UK and Europe did see small sales rises in retail sales but the rest of the world  showed a small rise or a small decline depending on how you calculated your currency. As for the future it looks like the board has already succumbed to those challenging conditions which it believes will continue through the second half.

Electrocomponents ECM benefitted from strong momentum in the six months to the 30th September. Group like for like revenue grew by 10% after a strong second quarter and adjusted profit before tax for the half year is expected to grow from last year’s £79m to £100m.

Audioboom Group BOOM produced record revenue for the quarter ended 31 August 2018 with a rise of 14% on Q2 2018 and 26% up on Q3 2017. Despite that revenue for the 13 months ending 31 December 2018 is now expected to be below current market expectations. That will still show a hefty rise on the 12 months to November 2017 which produced $6mUS$ compared to between $11.5m and US$13m which is expected for the end of the current year.

Gooch & Housego GHH  has entered its new financial year with a record year end order book, which, as at 30 September 2018, stood at £96.1 million, an increase of 33% compared with last year. On a like for like basis and excluding the impact of foreign exchange this still comes in as a healthy 17% rise. The company is in a strong position and has been able to take advantage of positive market conditions.

Intercede Group IGP updates that operating losses for the six months to the end of September have been substantially reduced to less than £1.0m compared to last years £3.1m. Revenue for the half year has risen by more than 10% compared to last year.

AB Dynamics plc ABDP has performed well throughout the year and the Board expects both revenue and profit before tax will significantly exceed market expectations.

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Andalas Energy #ADL CEO Simon Gorringe discusses the conditional Bunga Mas PSC acquisition on the Vox Markets podcast

 

Simon Gorringe, Chief Executive Officer of Andalas Energy & Power (ADL) discusses progress at the company including their recent acquisition in Indonesia.

(Interview starts at 12 minute 29 seconds)

Multichannel Podcast – Brand CEO Alan Green discusses EIS & SEIS with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital

Brand CEO Alan Green discusses Sentient Capital, it’s aim’s, unique approach to investing into growth companies and future steps with director Neil Butland. Neil also explains EIS and SEIS tax breaks for investors as well as Sentient’s fundraising rounds for DragApp and Feder8.

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 30 April 2018

NEX EXCHANGE   

Chapel Down Group (CDGP) reported a 15% increase in annual sales to £11.8m. Wine sales were one-fifth higher at £8.12m with cider and beer sales, via associate Curious Drinks, were 7% ahead at £3.68m. Operating profit improved from £346,000 to £470,000 but there was a much larger loss from the Curious Drinks associate so pre-tax profit was lower. The new brewery should be open in the first quarter of 2019. Last year’s fundraising means that Chapel Down has a strong balance sheet and is in a good position to expand. Michael Spencer has increased his stake from 17.5% to 18.2%.

Adnams (ADB) says that beer volumes were nearly 5% higher in the first quarter, while spirit volumes were 30% ahead. However, the first half outcome will be lower than last time because the poor weather hit the company’s pubs and there are additional costs for updating the brewery and IT systems. The second half is expected to be stronger and also to benefit from cost savings.

PLACTAL (Play Data is Capital) has appointed Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) to advise on its token generation event for a decentralised mobile game advertising application. South Korea-developed PLACTAL will tokenise a gamer’s gaming data.

Cyber security technology developer Crossword Cybersecurity (CCS) more than doubled its revenues in 2017. The loss still increased from £950,000 to £1.24m despite the improvement in revenues from £345,000 to £737,000. The cash outflow was £1.06m, which left £490,000 in the bank. Since then, £2.16m was raised via a placing at 270p a share.

Early Equity (EEQP) is seeking to move to a standard listing. The company’s NAV was £1.54m, including £429,000, at the end of 2017

Sandal (SAND) has secured a term loan of up to £500,000 from major shareholder Greenbrook Industries Ltd and £250,000 would be used to buy back 862,068 shares from Greenbrook. The shares will be cancelled and this will enhance earnings per share. Shareholders are being asked to approve the share buy back.

The ownership of Via Developments (VIA1) has changed. It was 100%-owned by Pyramid Court Investments Ltd, which is owned by John Kahn. John Kahn directly owns 90%, Ivan McKeever 5% and David Harris. Stephen Kahn has an option to acquire a 45% stake from John Kahn.

Etaireia Investments (ETIP) has appointed Myles Cunliffe as executive chairman. He has two decades of experience as a finance broker and he founded online car finance provider Get Me Finance. More recently, he has been involved in property finance.

AIM   

Automotive testing systems supplier AB Dynamics (ABDP) reported a 39% increase in revenues to £15.3m in the six months to February 2018. Underlying pre-tax profit was one-third higher at £3.3m. There is a strong order book so the outlook is positive. AB has moved into its new factory and this will provide additional capacity. A new subsidiary has been set up in Germany.

Nexus Infrastructure (NEXS) has warned that its TriConnex utility connections business is likely to report flat revenues and operating profit in 2018 even though its order book has grown. It is taking longer to get onto sites as the builders have to satisfy local government pre-conditions so revenues are slower coming through. The Tamdown infrastructure services provider should contribute a higher profit this year.

Safestyle UK (SFE) is not paying its 7.5p a share final dividend. The replacement windows and doors company wants to conserve its cash because it expects 2018 profit to be much lower than expected due to competitive pressures. Steve Halbert has resigned as chairman.

Panthera Resources (PAT) has been a warded an initial three-year exploration licence for Bassala in southern Mali. Several large gold anomalies have already been identified. Further soil sampling will help to provide drilling targets.

Osirium Technologies (OSI) is expanding in the UK and internationally. The cyber software supplier increased revenues from £478,000 to £648,000 but invoiced sales more than doubled so Osirium already has significant revenues it will recognise this year. There was £1m in the bank at the end of 2017. Since then, £4.2m has raised at 134p a share. It will take time for revenues to build up and losses are anticipated for the next couple of years at least.

Graphene technology developer Directa Plus (DCTA) has a strong base in a number of markets and they should help it grow its revenues over the coming years. A large chunk of the existing revenues come from the textiles sector. The environmental market could be a significant one for the company. Directa Plus has linked up with Sartec to commercialise its Grafysorber technology in the oil and gas sector. The plan is to develop a pilot plant to treat contaminated water. The most recent deal is for the potential use of Graphene Plus in the production of new and retreaded tyres. This is a development agreement with Marangoni, a major truck tyre manufacturer. A bespoke version of Graphene Plus will be developed and there could be a commercial launch in 2019.

There has been positive news from Futura Medical (FUM) concerning its MED2002 erectile dysfunction gel. A phase III efficacy study is being prepared following pharmacokinetic study information that suggests that higher dosages should increase efficacy. A rapid rate of absorption was demonstrated with peak levels in the bloodstream at between 10 and 12 minutes. Lombard Odier has trimmed its stake to below 18% after the uptick in the share price.

D4t4 Solutions (D4T4) says that full year profit will be slightly better than expected as revenues should hit £20m. Demand for Celebrus software remains strong and there is a greater interest in the recurring revenue-based offering. Net cash is £3.9m.

Driver Group (DRV) has sold and leased back its central admin offices in Haslingden, Lancashire. This generated £1.65m in cash. After taking into account rent from a sub-let the annual rental cost will be £105,000.

Tax Systems (TAX) reported revenues of £15.1m and pre-tax profit of £4.9m in its first full year in its current form. The corporation tax services provider has strong recurring revenues and is a strong cash generator. Net debt was £18.2m at the end of 2017. Cash generation will reduce this, although management wants to be acquisitive. It is taking its time, though, and has not gone through with a couple of deals because they did not meet the criteria.

Audioboom (BOOM) says that the structure and terms of its acquisition of Triton Digital Canada are going to change. Candy Ventures is providing a £1m convertible loan note so that the company has working capital while it waits for the deal to go ahead, although there is no certainty it will.

Access Intelligence (ACC) is raising £2.8m at 4p a share in order to invest in its Vuelio platform so that analytical information is better presented.

Volex (VLX) is paying up to 3.5 million shares for medical and industrial cables business MC Electronics. The North American company made a small loss on revenues of $19.1m in the year to October 2017.

Zoo Digital (ZOO) says that full year revenues will grow from $16.5m to at least $28m and EBITDA will improve from $1.8m to $2.3m. The main growth has come from localisation services.

MAIN MARKET    

London and Associated Properties (LAS) has completed the £37.25m sale of its Brixton Markets assets. Andrew Perloff’s Maland Pension Fund, which has a 5.3% shareholding, has requested a resolution at the next annual meeting. Maland wants non-Heller family shareholders to be given a chance to realise their investment at no more than a 7.5% discount to net assets. The current share price is at a greater discount to NAV. The directors and Heller family own 56.6% of the company and they will vote against the resolution.

Bisichi Mining (BISI) has a portfolio of UK shopping centres that it owns jointly with London and Associated Properties and the Heller family are major shareholders. Bisichi owns the Black Wattle coal mine in South Africa. In 2017, revenues increased from £22.8m to £37.5m and pre-tax profit jumped from £630,000 to £1.94m. It would have been higher without a £1.83m write-off of a joint venture investment. A total dividend of 5p a share will be paid for 2017, which includes a 1p a share special dividend. Cavendish Asset Management owns 18.1% of Bisichi.

Nanoco (NANO) has extended its partnership with a major US corporation. Nanoco has won this latest development deal after a competitive process. The original deal was for sensor applications of Nanoco’s technology.

Ross Group (RGP) increased revenues from £59,000 to £335,000 and managed to swing from loss to profit in 2017. The profit was achieved after a provision for unpaid debts. Management still wants to find an acquisition to fully exploit the premium listing. Net debt is just over £6m but this is at zero interest rate.

Standard list shell daVictus (DVT) still had £484,000 in the bank at the end of 2017, down from £632,000 the previous year. Fellow shell Auctus Growth (AUCT) had £972,000 in cash, down from £1.01m. Neither has found a suitable acquisition.

Sure Ventures (SURE) has made its first virtual reality investment. The £500,000 investment in Immotion Group, which has developed VR cinema pods that are being placed in theme parks and museums.  Sure is on the Specialist Fund Segment.

Andrew Hore

Growth Company Multicast – Alan Green talks to Nick Timms, CEO of DragApp

Brand Comms CEO Alan Green talks to Nick Timms. Nick is co-founder and CEO at DragApp, a mailbox application that organises your inbox in much the same way that a CRM system organises and segments a company marketing database. In the past year DragApp has amassed over 30,000 users in nearly 200 countries, and already boasts blue chip names such as Uber, Netflix, Spotify and AirBNB on its client list. A highly successful marketing strategy sees DragApp currently generate $36 from every $30 spent. The company are currently raising £600k through FCA regulated Sentient Capital to further accelerate global growth. Info on this and investment documents can be found here

Brand CEO Alan Green discusses Prairie Mining #PDZ, Andalas Energy #ADL, Audioboom #BOOM & #ELA on Vox Markets podcast

Brand CEO Alan Green discusses Prairie Mining #PDZ, Andalas Energy #ADL, Audioboom #BOOM & Eland Oil & Gas #ELA with Justin Waite on the Vox Markets podcast. Interview is 32 minutes in.

Ian Pollard – Earthport Forced To Dive Deep Into The Jargon Drawer

Earthport EPO like so many companies faced with unexpected problems, management feels forced to dive deep into the jargon drawer in the false belief that if it can express itself in phraseology which only they and a few other of the initiated can understand, readers will be convinced that it must be doing a good job. The problem is fairly serious in that even as early in its financial year as now, it anticipates that revenue for the year to the 30th June 2018 will be 10%-15% below current expectations. That of course is nonsense in itself because those expectations are no longer the current ones, they are the previous ones which the company now no longer expects to be able to meet. The reasons for the rather dramatic changes in fortunes include delays in some expected contracts and a recent change at one client which on its own, will result in a loss of about 5% of projected 2018 revenue.

But  help is at hand especially from various unspecified pipelines which get star billing in today’s update, in particular the new business pipeline which is stronger than at any time in the company’s history. Incremental transactions are also going to be ramped up and help will be forthcoming from international corridors, on boarding regulated business, receptivity at conferences, existing infrastructure will be leveraged and deep pocketed strategic partners will it seems, be prepared to dig deeply into those pockets. Fine sounding words indeed but what do they mean?. .Well basically it looks like they mean that cash flow beak even point will not be reached until 2019

Hunting plc HTG expects a modest profit for the full year with results strongly weighted towards the second half and following a strong second half performance from Hunting Titan. Restrictions on dividends have been lifted and payments will be resumed at an “appropriate time”

Redde plc REDD The positive start to the year announced in September and October has continued into December with sales continuing to show an increase over last year and trading profit also ahead. Interim results for the half year to the 31st December are expected to be announced on the 1st March.

Audioboom BOOM enjoyed a transformational year in 2017 but despite a surge in business and tight control of overheads the company was still loss making at about the samerateas in 2016. i.e. about 4.5m. Unique file requests rose by over 60%, monthly unique users by over 50% and available advertising impressions surged by 740%. Revenues for the year to 30th November are expected to show a rise of more than 250%. Its Originals Network is expected to grow strongly in 2018, with 15 new podcasts due to be launched.

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Bovis Profits And Completions Tumble

Bovis Group BVS It is years since a major house builder produced such an appalling set of results. To do so at a time when the industry is in a long term boom illustrates the depth and severity of the problems which Bovis created for itself and to which management was too inept to find solutions. At least it now has a new CEO who has been in post since April and can hopefully start to get a grip on things.

Completions in the six months to the 30th June fell by 6% which is no surprise because at the same time the average selling price of a Bovis home rose by 9%, which the company appears to be trying to claim was not really a price increase as such but due to a change in mix. The result is that half year profit before tax fell by 31% and earnings per share by30%, whilst net debt more than quadrupled to over £32m. The company claims that the disaster is down to operational issues which can be fixed. The interim dividend remains unchanged but as a sweetener to shareholders they are promised that the full year dividend for 2017 will be increased by 5% and that for 2018 it they will get a further 20% increase. In addition, over the three years to 2020, special dividends equal to 134p per share will also be paid.

Since February customer rating levels are said to have improved significantly but they are still down at 74% which means that a quarter of Bovis customers are dissatisfied. One answer the company proposes is to focus on affordable housing and the second is to increase the number of houses built to 4,000 a year. In the current half year it completed 1,512.

AudioBoom BOOM set another quarterly record  with third quarter revenue rising by 32% over quarter 2 and by 329% over the third  quarter of 2016. This strong financial and operational performance is expected to continue with orders received for the fourth quarter continuing at record levels.

Empyrean Energy EME is excited about the prospects for offshore China Block 29/11 and confirms that, based on its internal preliminary analysis, the Block contains prospects of truly significant scale and size. The three priority targets have the potential to contain 591m barrels of oil.

Molins MLN moved back into profit for the half year to the 30th June with last years half time loss of £0.3m being replaced by a statutory profit of £0.9m. Basic earnings per share of 4.3p similarly replaced a loss of 1.5p per share. The company claims that it is now positioning itself for sustained long term growth.

Redde REDD saw like for like turnover rise by 19% in the year to the 30th June and the final dividend is to be increased by 8.7% making a total increase for the year of 9.8%. Adjusted profit before tax rose by 16% and adjusted basic earnings per share by 16.8%

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