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Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 12 April 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Virgata Services is making a 50p a share cash offer for Walls & Futures REIT (WAFR) and that is a 52% discount to net assets at the end of September 2020. It is a premium to the market price prior to the announcement, but management recommends shareholders take no action. The bid values Walls & Futures REIT at £1.9m. Six shareholders own more than 80% of the company. Roy Nominees holds 33.2% and Standard Life Trustee Co Ltd holds 22.9%. Virgata is owned by the family office of the Goetstouwers family, and it has a property portfolio worth €80m, plus stakes in developments in the Netherlands. All the interests are outside of the UK.

Love Hemp (LIFE) plans to move to the Main Market later this year and has raised £5m at 3.5p a share. The cash will finance a global market campaign for its CBD and hemp products.

Sativa Wellness Inc (SWEL) has raised C$3.6m from the first tranche of its private placement. Sativa is offering two and eight day quarantine tests for travellers returning to the UK.

Good Energy (GOOD) is appointing Nigel Pocklington as chief executive. He is the former chief commercial director at Moneysupermarket.com. He starts on 1 May. Good Energy is making a further £1m investment, via a convertible, in electric vehicle mapping services provider Zap-Map’s parent company Next Green Car. Good Energy already owns 50.1% of Next Green Car. Zap-Map covers more than 95% of the UK public electric vehicle charging points.

KR1 (KR1) has invested a further $150,000 in Moonbeam Network for 30,000 GLMR tokens, taking the total owned to 130,000 tokens.

On 6 April, Coinsilium (COIN) $3.13m of cryptocurrency and tokens, up from $1.98m two months earlier.

Gunsynd (GUN) says that investee company Low 6 is on course to float in the second quarter of 2021. The B2B pool betting firm has 122,000 users.

Clean Invest Africa (CIA) has signed a memorandum of understanding Exagogi for the development of opportunities in India for CoalTech. India has high stockpiles of coal fines waste, which CoalTech can clean-up.

A general meeting has been requisitioned by shareholders at Early Equity (EEQP).

Evrensel Capital Partners has not subscribed the £250,000 for shares in Truspine Technologies (TSP) that it promised last September. TruSpine has raised £35,000 at 10p a share, taking the total raised in the latest fundraising to £620,500.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) has raised £634,000 following the exercise of warrants at 0.7p each. Tectonic has raised A$215,000 from selling part of its holding in VOX Royalty Corp.

EPE Special Opportunities (ESO) had a nav of 448.15p a share at the end of March 2021.

Chris Akers has reduced his stake in Quetzal Capital (QTZ) from 17.2% to 12.3%.

Gowin New Energy (GWIN) has appointed Novum Securities as corporate adviser and trading in the shares has recommenced.

AIM

Minds + Machines (LSE: MMX) is selling its business and assets to GoDaddy for $120m (£87m) and this is equivalent to 8.8p a share, after transaction costs. ICANN needs to provide approval for the transfer of the top level domains. The company will become a shell.

Mobile phone and technology recycler and reseller musicMagpie could have an enterprise value of between £180m and £220m when it plans to join AIM later in April. The company buys and resells smartphones, computers, CDs, DVDs, books and other products that might have ended up in landfill. The market for pre-owned technology and media is estimated to be growing at 10% a year. In the year to November 2020, revenues were £153.4m and EBITDA was £13.9m.

Demand remains strong from the rail sector for software and consultancy services from Tracsis (TRCS), although the data and events businesses had a tougher time. Interim profit declined in the first half. finnCap forecasts a recovery in full year pre-tax profit from £8.3m to £9.1m, before a much larger increase in 2021-22 assuming trading is nearer to past levels. The Williams rail review is due to be published and this could provide additional opportunities for Tracsis.

International payment services provider Equals (EQLS) increased business revenues in 2020, but a slump in consumer revenues due to the lack of travel. Total revenues were 4% ahead at £29m and Equals made a small profit. In the first quarter of 2021, revenues were flat at £8m and again this masks business growth, plus the comparatives were strong in this period. Canaccord Genuity has upgraded its 2021 pre-tax profit forecast from £3.8m to £4.2m.

FIH Group (FIH) lost money in the UK last year, but this was more than offset by profits in the Falklands. The art distribution and Portsmouth Ferry operations were hit by Covid-19 lockdowns.

Oil palm plantation operator Dekel Agri-Vision (DKL) produced 71,500MT in the first quarter. Crude palm oil sales were 27% higher at 13,921MT and average realised prices are one-fifth higher. Dekel is on course to make a pre-tax profit in 2021.

Arena Events (ARE) has been successful in its bid for the business and assets of Aztec Schaffer. Arena will pay $3.35m for a 50% stake in a new joint venture owner of the assets and there will be a debt financing package of $18.25m.

MAIN MARKET

Sales of new and used cars by Lookers (LOOK) fell by 10% last year. However, it appears to have gained market share in new cars. Peel Hunt has increased its 2021 pre-tax profit forecast by £11m to £34.8m.

Stranger Holdings (STHP) has signed heads of terms to acquire Technology Minerals, which itself is involved in acquisitions of businesses producing battery raw materials and recycling batteries. These include Recyclus Group, which Stranger has previously considered buying. League of Angels founder Barney Battles has been appointed as a non-executive director.

Caerus Mineral Resources (CMRS) is acquiring PR Ploutonic Resources. This includes the Troulli, Kokkinapetra and St Nicholas copper and gold licences. Caerus is paying £750,000 in shares.

Argo Blockchain (ARB) says March revenues were at a record level of £6.57m. This reflects the installation of additional equipment and a higher bitcoin price.

Tirupati Graphite (TGR) achieved record graphite production in the first quarter of 2021. Work continues on increasing capacity at the Sahamamy project in Madagascar.

Anemoi International (AMOI) has raised £240,000 at 4p per depositary interest.

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 8 February 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Clinical IT developer DXS International (DXSP) is encouraged by the initial results from pilots of the ExpertCare system designed to analyse the electronic records of people with hypertension. DXS is awaiting NHS accreditation.

World High Life (LIFE) has appointed Tony Calamita as chief executive. He is a founder of Love Hemp, whose vendors will receive deferred consideration of £2m in shares at 1.5p each. Calamita will hold a 13.5% stake. The company has raised £467,000 at 1p a share.

Juliet Davenport is stepping down as chief executive of Good Energy (GOOD) but will continue as a non-executive. Good Energy company Zap-Map has signed up ESB Energy to its Zap-Pay electric vehicle charging payment service.

Capital For Colleagues (CFCP) has sold its investment in civil engineering materials distributor Civils Store for £1m, which represents a profit of 150% on a £400,000 investment. The initial £500,000 will be received on 15 February and the rest by the end of July.

EPE Special Opportunities (ESO) increased its NAV by 38% to 437.63p a share during the year to January 2021. EPE raised £10m from the sale of LED lighting company Luceco (LUCE) shares and retains a 24.9% stake.

Belvedere Leisure (BELV) reported a loss of £499,000 for the year to June 2020. There were the costs of the flotation of the corporate bonds.

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has approval to treat patients at its North West cancer centre. The first patients should be treated in 2022.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) has been promoted to the Apex segment of the AQSE Growth Market.

Eastinco Mining (EM.P) has appointed Novum Securities as its corporate adviser.

AIM

A higher interim profit contribution from fuels partly offset lower contributions from the rest of the NWF (NWF) businesses. Group revenues fell from £348.9m to £309.4m, while underlying pre-tax profit declined from £3m to £2.5m. The main decline was in food distribution where volatile demand hampered profitability. The cold weather will boost demand for heating oil in the second half.

Document management services provider IDOX (IDOX) improved revenues from £65.5m to £68m and pre-tax profit from £7.7m to £10.5m. There is further potential to improve margins. The order book at the end of October was £15.9m. Having sorted out the business, management is considering returning to the acquisition trail.

Mattioli Woods (MTW) is paying up to £2.34m for wealth management adviser Montagu. There are £80m of assets under advice.

STM Group (STM) expects to report a £2m pre-tax profit on revenues of £24m in 2020. There was net cash of £15.5m. Therese Neish is stepping down as finance director.

BlueRock Diamonds (LON: BRD) has revealed a significantly increased resource at the Kareevlei diamond mine in South Africa. There was a 49% increase in resource to 10.4 million net tonnes and a 53% increase in net carats to 516,200. The overall grade has edged up to 5 carats per tonne. There was 19% of the resource upgraded to indicated resources. BlueRock plans to mine one million tonnes per annum.

Strong first half trading at parcel and freight delivery company DX (DX.) has prompted finnCap to increase its forecast pre-tax profit for the year to June 2021 by £2m to £8.7m. The business continues to recover with profitability building up in the freight division.

Open Orphan (ORPH) has opened a new challenge study quarantine facility across the road from its existing centre in east London, which is already booked up for this year. This adds a further 19 beds.

Compliance and energy saving services provider Sureserve (SUR) has doubled its dividend to 1p a share. Less traffic on the road during the original lockdown helped to improve efficiency and margins. Shore has increased its 2020-21 pre-tax profit forecast by 16% from £9.4m to £11.9m.

Lexington Gold (LEX) has received environmental approvals for drilling at the JKL project in the US. Drilling should commence later in February. Pure Ice Ltd has increased its stake from 14.3% to 15.1%.

Advanced surface coatings provider Hardide (HDD) has raised £790,000 at 30.9p a share and secured a CBILS loan of £250,000. This will boost the cash position while the company waits for delayed work to come through.

Seeing Machines (SEE) says interim revenues will improve by 15% to A$18.1m. The driver safety systems developer’s annualised recurring revenues are A$15.5m.

Real-time software provider Checkit (CKT) has acquired its US distributor Tutela Monitoring Systems for £850,000.

Lok’nStore (LOK) acquired its Chichester self-storage site has been acquired for £4.2m, with the cash outflow offset by the £1.5m disposal of the Wolverhampton freehold and £1.7m sale of the vacant Southampton site – around £300,000 lower than book value. Contracts have been exchanged for a new site in Staines. Self-storage has proved to be resilient during Covid-19 lockdowns. Occupancy rates are rising, and prices have been stable at Lok’nStore.

Filtronic (FTC) made a small first half loss but the outlook for the full year is better. New defence contracts and increasing 5G-related demand will help the second half and the defence orders are at higher margins. Full year revenues are set to fall but pre-tax profit could treble to £300,000. Capex requirements are low so the business should be cash generative.

Bacanora Lithium (BCN) has raised £48.1m from a placing and retail offer at 45p a share. Ganfeng has also subscribed for £24m worth of shares. This will finance the development of the Sonora lithium project. It will pay for the 50% share of the cost of bringing stage one into production.

Evgen Pharma (EVG) has launched a placing and open offer to raise up to £11m at 8p a share. This will fund preclinical work on metastatic breast cancer and two other potential treatments, including glioma where there could be a clinical trial. The cash should last until the middle of 2023.

MAIN MARKET

Thalassa Holdings (THAL) is making a £2.5m investment in London Medical Laboratory. Thalassa will lend the company £2.5m to finance the opening of a phlebotomy clinic and increase capacity at existing facilities. The loan would be converted into shares if London Medical Laboratory floats on AIM. Thalassa also has warrants to subscribe for an 8% stake in the fully diluted share capital.

French Connection (FCCN) says Spotlight Brands and Go Global Retail are potential bidders for the clothing retailer.

Personal products supplier InnovaDerma (IDP) has rebuffed an all-share offer from Creighton (CRL) although the potential bidder is still interested in making an offer and has sent a letter to InnovaDerma. This suggests an offer of two share for every three InnovaDerma shares, which is equivalent to around 44p a share.

BATM Advanced Communications (BVC) says full year revenues were at least $180m, which is 45% ahead of the previous year. The diagnostics business is the main impetus behind the growth.

Argo Blockchain (ARB) has taken a 25% stake in Pluto Digital Assets. This cost £1m at 3p a share and there are also warrants exercisable at 6p a share. Pluto is a crypto venture capital and technology company.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 21 December 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Employee ownership investor and adviser Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) increased its NAV by 21% to 52.69p a share in the year to August 2020. There were realised gains of £307,000 and a £1.35m increase in the fair value of investments. There was cash of £388,000 at the end of August 2020. Management hope to pay a 2020-21 dividend of at least 1p a share. Cobrio Fund Partners has increased its stake from 4.58% to 7.55% and they were nearly five months late in announcing this.

Gunsynd (GUN) has made a £200,000 investment in Low 6, a sports betting platform. Low 6 partners with sports teams and plans to float in 2021. Gunsynd has invested a further A$800,000 in Rincon Resources at 20 cents a share as part of its ASX listing on 21 December.

A successful planning permission application for a Sutton development St Mark Homes (SMAP) has led to the announcement of an interim dividend of 3p a share. The ex-dividend date is 29 December. Approval has been gained for additional retail space, which could be let to a large retailer, at an existing development in Sutton plus a new building with 30 apartments. There are also new developments in Hanwell, Finchley and Muswell Hill.

KR1 (KR1) has made two new investments. There was $150,000 invested in 15 million Lido tokens and $200,000 in 797,043.48 Swarm tokens. KR1 has also generated a further 141,564.69 Polkadot tokens since August. These have been sold for $797,000. KR1 still owns 3.5 million Polkadot tokens.

Good Energy (GOOD) has announced three strategic partnerships for its mobility as a service offer. Mina Energy has technology to make home charging more effective. Home Energy Infrastructure can arrange funding for installing EV charging infrastructure. Select Car Leasing can lease the vehicles.

Sativa Wellness (SWEL) says the EU has concluded that CBD is not a drug within the meaning of the UN single convention on narcotic drugs 1961. It therefore qualifies as a food. The company is preparing a novel food dossier for the UK Food Standards Agency in parallel with the EU. The UN has voted to remove cannabis from Schedule IV, the category of the world’s most dangerous drugs, while in the US there has been a bill passed to decriminalise cannabis at the national level.

World High Life (LIFE) has secured a listing for Love Hemp with Boots.

SulNOx Group (SNOX) shareholders have signed an option agreement with Rigworld Group, which could purchase 20 million shares at 40p each up until 31 March. This includes the whole of Nistad Group’s 14.6% stake.

Shareholders in Black Sea Property (BSP) have voted against four resolutions at its AGM, although they did vote for four other resolutions including one to retain the Aquis quotation. The two resolutions relating to Alex Borrelli were withdrawn and he has resigned from the board. Trading in the shares has been suspended until a new non-executive director is appointed.

Imperial X (IMPP) has 450,000 shares in Canada-based Imperial Helium and has subscribed for C$110,000 convertible debentures, which will be converted at a 20% discount to the IPO price.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised £365,000 at 5.5p a share.

AIM

DP Poland (DPP) has agreed the acquisition of rival Poland-based pizza restaurant group Dominium for £22.7m in shares and loan notes of €7.5m. DP Poland raised £3.5m at 8p a share, while 21.8 million of the consideration shares were sold at the same price. The combined group will be one of the top three pizza chains in Poland.

Radio frequency communications networks developer CyanConnode (CYAN) has managed its cash well and continues to grow revenues. In the six months to September 2020, revenues were £1.5m and the loss was £1.37m. In the two months since the period end, revenues have been around £1m. The order book in India is worth £19m, which is equivalent to one million units, and these orders could be deployed over the next two years. There are also orders in Thailand and Sweden.

Construction dispute and property services provider Driver Group (DRV) maintained its profit in the second half of the year to September 2020. Underlying pre-tax profit still declined from £3m to £2.5m on revenues 9% lower at £53.1m. The higher margin Diales expert witness business continues to grow. Net cash was £8.2m at the end of September 2020. The final dividend is 0.75p a share.

Codemasters (CDM) has withdrawn is recommendation of the Take-Two Interactive bid and switched its support to the Electronic Arts offer of 604p a share.

Two companies have decided not to make an offer for Telit Communications (TCM) and that leaves u-blox as the only potential bidder left.

K3 Capital (K3C) is trading strongly and finnCap has upgraded its 2020-21 earnings forecast from 11.4p a share to 11.9p a share. There have been cross-selling benefits from recent acquisitions. The acquisitions business has performed well and there is longer-term potential from the Quantuma insolvency business.

Carpets retailer United Carpets (UCG) has decided to leave AIM and it is launching a tender offer of 6.25p a share for up to 29 million shares.

Property services provider Fletcher King (FLK) fell into loss in the six months to October 2020. Revenues from asset management and fund management clients was steady, but other revenues were weak. There is £3.1m of cash in the bank.

NWF (NWF) says that the fuels division has traded positively, and it has recommenced the process of assessing acquisitions. The new food warehouse is fully utilised, but the volatile demand has hit profitability. Feed volumes were slightly lower than the year before.

Summerway Capital (SWC) is switching its investing policy to the software sector and Vin Murria, who has built up AIM-quoted software companies in the past, is joining the board.

Yourgene Health (YGEN) had a steady first half with Covid-19 testing revenues helping to offset lower demand for other products.

Kodal Minerals (KOD) is acquiring the Fatou gold project in southern Mali. There is a mineral resource of 350,000 ounces of gold and potential to increase the figure.

Touchstone Exploration (TXP) has secured a gas sales agreement covering all production from the Ortoire block in Trinidad.

Trinity Exploration (TRIN) has signed an agreement with the National Gas Company of Trinidad to develop new projects in the Caribbean. This includes renewable energy, stranded gas and a micro liquefied national gas business.

MAIN MARKET

BATM (BVM) is investing $3m in Ador Diagnostics as part of a $10m funding. This will be spent on further develop its technology. BATM has a 36.7% stake.

Contango Holdings (CGO) has a potential 1.8 million ounces gold resource at an average grade of 1g/t at the Garolo gold project in Mali. There is further gold at greater depths. The first gold production could be before the end of 2021.

Spinnaker Opportunities (SOP) has conditionally agreed an all-share acquisition of Kanabo Research and has advanced a further £100,000 to the medicinal cannabis company.

Kin and Carta (KCT) has sold healthcare communications business Hive for £13.8m. The business contributed pre-tax profit of £1.2m last year.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 30 November 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Healthcare IT supplier DXS International (DXSP) had £1.2m in cash at the end of October 2020. Net cash was £584,000, following the capitalisation of £568,000 of development spending. Interim revenues improved by 3% to £1.72m but progress was held back by Covid-19. Pre-tax profit jumped from £90,000 to £151,000 due to lower admin costs.

Imperial X (IMPP) is continuing its due diligence on previously announced acquisitions of mining and royalty interests and the plan is to apply for a standard listing when the acquisitions are completed.

TechFinancials Inc (TECH) has invested $148,000 in RenewSenses, which has developed a wearable device for the visually impaired. The cash will help to complete the development of the A.I. Cane product, which is a camera attached to a handheld device and this enables obstacles to be identified.

S-Ventures (SVEN) has invested a further £75,000 in a convertible loan note issued by vitamin-fortified juices and smoothies Coldpress Foods. The annual interest rate is 15%. S-Ventures has a 3.3% stake in Coldpress.

Primorus Investments (PRIM) has terminated options over 17.8 million shares held by three individuals and has paid a total of £140,000 in compensation. These options could have been exercised at 6p a share or 8p a share and were equivalent to 11.3% of the potentially enlarged share capital. Primorus has decided to drop the Aquis quotation on 24 December and keep the AIM quote. This and a reduction in director pay will reduce costs by more than £200,000 a year.

Formation Group (FRM) is withdrawing from the Aquis Stock Exchange on 31 December.

Good Energy (GOOD) has appointed Canaccord Genuity as joint broker.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised a further £335,000 at 5p a share and 5.5p a share.

Aquis Stock Exchange has launched a market maker incentive scheme. The market makers will offer two-way prices for 505 of stocks on the Apex segment with a maximum spread of 5%. There should be 25 companies on the Apex segment. Market makers will receive warrants for shares in the Aquis Stock Exchange with the best performers gaining the largest percentage. They could earn up to 19.9% of the market over a three year period. Early adopters include Canaccord Genuity, Liberum, Peel Hunt, Shore Capital, Stifel and Winterflood.

Liberum Capital and Zeus Capital have been approved as corporate advisers for the Aquis Stock Exchange.

AIM

Kistos (KIST) began trading on AIM on 25 November. The investment company raised £30.2m after expenses and the market capitalisation was £40.3m. The plan is to seek acquisitions in the oil and gas sector. The team behind Kist is the same as for RockRose Energy. The share price has risen from 100p to 118.2p.

Cyber security software and services provider Shearwater (SWG) reported a slump in revenues, but the decline was in lower margin products. There were also overhead reductions. That meant that there was a profit before amortisation of acquired intangibles. Orders were delayed but there was still a £1.7m cash inflow from operations. Net cash was £3m at the end of September 2020. Two-fifths of revenues are recurring, and the long-term outlook is good.

Circle Property (CRC) reported a 2p a share decline in NAV to 283p a share at the end of September 2020. Loan to value is 42% and there is £37.7m of a loan facility still undrawn. New lettings have been secured since March and rent collections have been strong. The interim dividend is 2.5p a share.

Telecoms testing instrumentation supplier Calnex Solutions (CLX) has made an impressive start to its time on AIM with interim figures that show near-doubled underlying pre-tax profit of £2.3m. This has led to an upgrade of the full year profit expectations to £2.9m. The cash being generated is enabling additional development spending.

IG Design (IGR) benefitted from a full contribution from the CSS acquisition, which has also reduced the seasonality of the group. Even so, continuing operations sales held up well. There is still scope for additional demand for Christmas wrapping and gift products, but time is running out for any significant improvement. Full year pre-tax profit is expected to be flat at $35m, although shares issued to fund the CSS acquisition mean that there would be a one-fifth decline in earnings per share to 25.5 cents. There should be a significant improvement next year.

First Property (FPO) has significantly reduced its debt following the sale of a property in Poland. This puts it in a good position to take advantage of any opportunities over the next year or so. Short-term income has declined and there were no performance fees. NAV is 54.3p a share. The interim dividend is maintained at 0.45p a share.

Appreciate (APP) has reinstated its dividend and it proposes an interim of 0.4p a share. Interim revenues were 18% lower at £27.4m. There is always a first half loss and it increased from £1.2m to £4.6m, although that does not include the restructuring costs. The Christmas savings business held up and the corporate incentives operations were boosted by additional business due to free school meals vouchers. More business is being done digitally and there continues to be a monthly improvement in trading.

D4T4 (D4T4) is continuing its development into a business focused on recurring revenues. The data collection and analysis software provider lost money in the first half, but management remains confident that D4T4 will achieve the full year pre-tax profit forecast of £3.2m, down from £5m. Net cash is expected to be £14m. The interim dividend was raised by 5% to 0.81p a share.

LoopUp (LOOP) has not achieved the annual run rate than it expected, and it will fall short of 2020 expectations. The remote meetings technology provider has been generating less revenue from international calls, which has hit overall revenues. Trimming the 2020 revenues forecast from £54.8m to £50.1m leads to a one-fifth reduction in pre-tax profit to £8.4m. The lower run rate means that 2021 forecast revenues have been slashed from £56m to £35.2m, which leads to a small loss for the year.

Outsourcing Inc has sent out the document for the takeover of CPL Resources (CPS). It is offering Euro11.25 a share, which values the Ireland-based recruitment company at Euro317.8m.

Digital advertising technology developer Miriad Advertising (MIRI) has raised £23m via a placing at 40p a share. A further £3m could be raised via an open offer. In July 2019, £16m was raised at 15p a share. The first half cash outflow was more than £4.6m. The cash will be spent on growing US revenues and further technology development.

Ilika (IKA) has decided to manufacture its Stearex batteries itself rather than outsourcing the process. This is the quickest route to production and operating margins will improve. Full scale manufacturing will start by early 2022.

ReNeuron (RENE) is raising up to £17.5m at a heavily discounted share price of 70p. This cash will enable the company to complete the current clinical trial for the retinitis pigmentosa treatment and design a phase III trial.

The share price rise of Wynnstay Group (WYN) has led to DBAY Advisors reducing its stake from 6.12% to 5.33%.

Urban Exposure (UEX) plans a tender offer of up to £65m at 75p a share. There is cash in the bank of £81m.

Second half trading was always going to be weak for Tracsis (TRCS) because of its exposure to events in the traffic and data division. Recurring revenues from the rail technology division have helped limit the pre-tax profit decline from £9.5m to £8.3m. This year is also likely to be tough, although it will depend on trading next summer. The main recovery is likely in 2021-22.

Serinus Energy (SENX) has raised $21m and this will pay off the debt of $16.5m. The lender will also receive a 9.9% stake. The rest of the cash will be invested in increasing oil and gas production.

Digital financial services and products provider Tungsten (TUNG) says profit will be lower than expected this year. Transaction volumes have declined, and revenues will be flat. Winning new business has become more difficult. Annualised savings of £4m are being made.

Michelmersh Brick (MBH) says that 2020 revenues and profit will exceed expectations. Government support of £500,000 will be repaid. There will still be net cash at the end of 2020. A final dividend of 2.25p a share will be paid.

Benchmark (BMK) has completed its restructuring and is on course to benefit from the investment it has made in products and capacity. The BMK08+CleanTreat treatment should be launched by next summer and this could help the aquaculture company to move into profit. In 2019-20, revenues fell from £124m to £105.6m, but lower costs meant that the loss was reduced. Genetics was the best performing division due to initial sales of salmon eggs from Salten. Net debt was £37.6m at the end of September 2020.

MAIN MARKET

Jlen Environmental (JLEN) is paying a second quarterly dividend of 1.69p a share, the same as the first quarter. There has been a small reduction in NAV from 97.5p a share to 96.1p a share because long-term expectations for electricity and gas prices have fallen. The portfolio is 34% wind power, 27% anaerobic digestion, 22% solar power, 15% waste and wastewater and 2% hydro and battery. A decline in waste volumes hampered the Bio Collectors business and other feedstocks are being sourced. There is £127.6m available to finance further acquisitions.

CML Microsystems (CML) had a mixed interim period with total revenues holding up at £12.9m. Storage technology revenues were one-quarter higher, but communications revenues fell by one-fifth and are no longer the largest contributor. However, the development activities have been broadened through acquisitions and there is a bigger addressable market. Pre-tax profit fell from £907,000 to £771,000 and the interim dividend is unchanged at 2p a share. The second half should be better than the first half and a rebalancing of resources should make the business more efficient.

Ingredients supplier Treatt (TET) improved pre-tax profit from £14m to £15.8m, although there was a small dip in revenues to £109m. The total dividend is 6.2p a share. Demand is likely to remain weaker than normal. The move to the new UK premises should happen in the middle of 2021.

J Smart Contractors (SMJ) reported halved underlying full year pre-tax profit of £1.28m. There was a surplus on investment property revaluations of £3.18m. There is net cash of £12m. A final dividend of 2.27p a share has been declared and the total for the year has edged up from 3.19p a share to 3.22p a share. The completion of building contracts has been delayed due to Covid-19 restrictions. Contracting work remains below the level of the previous year and private housing sales will be limited in the year to July 2021. NAV is £99.3m, which is double the market capitalisation.

Triad (LSE: TRD) revenues declined from £9m to £8.7m, but the IT consultancy did move from loss to profit due to lower costs. Utilisation rates for IT consultants is relatively high and cash covers around three-fifths of the market capitalisation.

Gulf Marine Services (GMS) has suspended chief executive Tim Summers, who was no longer a member of the board, due to an investigation into a severance payment of £429,000 on 10 November. Hassan Heikal was appointed a director at the general meeting on 25 November.

Cardiff Property (CDFF) increased its NAV from 2285p a share to 2436p a share at the end of September 2020, against a share price of 1725p. This reflects an uplift in the valuation of JV Campmoss due to an increase in value of Clivemount House in Maidenhead which has been sold since the year end. The dividend increased by 3% to 17.6p a share. There is cash of £5.5m and no debt.

Affordable housing services provider Aquila Services Group (AQSG) reported a decline in revenues from £3.89m to £3.51m, although there was a small improvement in operating profit prior to restructuring costs of £175,000. The dividend has been halved to 0.15p a share. Cash has increased to £1.4m.

OTAQ (OTAQ) increased interim revenues by 16% to £2.03m and it is on course for full year revenues of £4m. The growth has come from the aquaculture operations. Furlough claims reduced the loss.

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 12 October 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Kent-based brewer Shepherd Neame (SHEP) has been profitable since the beginning of July when pubs were allowed to reopen. However, like-for-like sales were lower, particularly in city centres. Own brand beer volumes fell by 2%.  Net debt was £82.4m on 26 September, with deferred payments of £6.9m. 

There was a reduction in full year revenues generated by National Milk Records (NMRP) from £22.8m to £21.6m. Earnings per share halved to 4.7p.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has an exclusive 45-day option to acquire 100% of mineral tenements in the Patersons Range region of Western Australia. The option payment is £50,000. A dividend of 1.25p a share is proposed.

In the year to April 2020, property investor Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP) increased revenues by 26% to £6.39m. Pre-tax profit was £9,252, including a lease breakage fee of £173,000. There were £800,000 of fair value reductions. Net cash generated by operating activities was £1.88m. Since the year end, £3.14m has been spent on properties.

British Honey Company (BHC) generated revenues of £1.04m in the five months to August 2020, with £500,000 from sanitiser. More recently alcohol sales have recovered, and sanitiser generates around 10% of sales. There was a £435,000 loss in the period because of higher admin expenses.

VI Mining (VIM) is terminating the Minaspampa and Rosario de Belen project acquisitions. Unpaid deferred consideration of $42.2m has bee cancelled. A joint venture is being discussed for other group projects.

Good Energy (GOOD) has launched the UK’s first dedicated heat pump tariff. There is no standing charge in the winter months.

European Lithium (EUR) intends to leave the Aquis Stock Exchange on 6 November.

Peterhouse has resigned as corporate adviser to Imperial X (IMPP).

Early Equity (EEQP) has raised £94,000 at 0.5p a share.

AIM

Omega Diagnostics (ODX) is involved with the initial UK-RTC order for one million Covid-19 rapid antibody tests. Omega is set to manufacture 175,000 of these tests. This is the first order and Omega plans to increase capacity to 200,000 tests per week by the beginning of November. finnCap believes each test could generate 150p and the gross margin is 50%. The current revenue forecast of £12.6m for the year to March 2021 does not include the Covid-19 tests which could generate a further £5.7m. Omega should be profitable without any contribution from the tests.

Xpediator (XPD) has acquired Yorkshire-based freight business Nidd Transport for £4.6m. The owner is retiring, and the purchase price is covered by Nidd’s cash and property assets -where there is already an agreement for a sale and leaseback. The deal is earnings enhancing. The logistics business does not have a significant presence in northern England and there will be cross-selling opportunities with other parts of the business. Nidd also has operations in France, Spain and Portugal. In the year to April 2020, Nidd made and operating profit of £500,000 on revenues of £11m. 

Hormonal disease treatments developer Diurnal (DNL) has raised £7.5m after expenses at 60p a share and there is an open offer to raise up to £2m.

Plutus PowerGen (PPG) plans to demerge its generation assets and become a cash shell. A placing at 0.02p a share will raise £490,000 after expenses and this will pay money owed to directors and provide working capital. Debt of £266,000 will be capitalised. Plutus tried to sell its co-investee assets but there was no buyer found. Plutus Energy is being demerged and there are plans to demerge the Plutus energy investment portfolio, but this is currently being blocked by Rockpool.  

Vanadium flow batteries developer Invinity Energy Systems (IES) is involved in four energy storage products funded by the California Energy Commission. These total 7.8MWh of batteries and they should be delivered next year. Commercial terms are still be agreed with partners. This follows a £1.1m order during June.

Dekel Agri-Vision (DKL) increased third quarter crude palm oil produced by 10% to 5,280MT, thanks to a higher extraction rate. The cashew nut processing plant should still be commissioned next spring.

Caledonia Mining (CMCL) has increased 2020 guidance following third quarter figures showing gold production of 15,200 ounces and nine-month production of 42,900 ounces. Full year guidance is between 55,000 and 58,000 ounces. Caledonia has secured an agreement with the Zimbabwe government that will enable it to assess other gold projects. A solar plant is being built that will provide 27% of the electricity needs of the Blanket mine.

MAIN MARKET

Fintech firm Mode Global Holdings (MODE) joined the standard list on 5 October. Mode raised £7.5m in a placing at 50p a share. Trading commenced. The share price has fallen back to 48.5p. The cash will help to finance the launch of a payments service powered by Open Banking that would replace the need for cards.

Ingredients supplier Treatt (TET) had net cash of £1m at the end of September 2020 and it intends to pay a final dividend. Pre-tax profit of £14m is in line with pre-Covid-19 expectations. Health and wellness revenues grew by 16%, although total revenues fell by  3% due to the lower orange oil prices.

Argo Blockchain (ARB) plans to acquire the two data centres in Quebec housing its cryptocurrency mining equipment that are owned by GPU.one. September mining revenues were £1.1m.

BATM (BVC) has secured an initial order for its Covid-19 Real-Time PCR diagnostic test kits and they will be delivered in the fourth quarter.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 21 September 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Renewable energy supplier Good Energy (GOOD) improved interim revenues by 6% to £67.5m. Gross margins declined as Good Energy focused on business customers. There was a slump from profit to loss, partly down to expected credit losses. There is no interim dividend, but payments should resume next year.

Newbury Racecourse (NYR) reported a two-thirds slump in interim revenues to £2.43m. This meant that the loss jumped from £363,000 to £1.69m. There were six race days in the period. Catering, events and the hotel all fell into loss, although the Rocking Horse nursery made a reduced profit. Nine race days are planned for the second half. There will be a substantial loss for 2020.  

S-Ventures (SVEN) raised £650,400 at 2.67p a share prior to flotation on 16 September. There have been no trades and the share price ended the week at 3p/5p.

Trading has resumed in Lombard Capital (LCAP) following the completion of disciplinary proceedings. A fine of £23,800 has been imposed on Lombard for the failure to provide timely information and a resulting sharp movement in the share price. Lombard also failed to notify changes in significant shareholdings.

Western Selection (WESP) says that its NAV has fallen by 29.7% to 45p a share over the 12 months to June 2020. The decline in the share prices of AIM-quoted investments is behind the decline. The lack of a dividend from Bilby (BILB) meant that income more than halved.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has raised £275,000 at 7p a share. TruSpine Technologies (TSP) says that Evrensel Capital Partners is being given an extension for its subscription of £250,000 at 36p a share. Evrensel has until 11 November to complete the subscription and it has been taken on as an adviser by TruSpine.  

Panmure Gordon has been approved as a corporate adviser for the Aquis Stock Exchange.

AIM

ThinkSmart (LON: TSL) has revalued its remaining 10% stake in buy now, pay later finance provider Clearpay. The Clearpay stake was valued at £53.7m at the end of June 2020. That is based on the Afterpay share price, which has risen since. Following the settlement of litigation with Dixons Carphone, which led to a payment of £1.45m after June, ThinkSmart has around £10m in the bank and generating cash.

Hanover Bidco has launched a 40p a share recommended bid for ClearStar (CLSU) and this values the employee checks company at £14.7m. ClearStar floated at 57p a share back in July 2014.

Parcel and freight delivery company DX (DX.) increased full year revenues by 2% to £329m and there was a move from loss to a pre-tax profit of £1.8m. The freight division loss was reduced. Net cash was £12.3m, although it is helped by delayed tax payments. The parcels market is growing, and DX continues to invest in new depots.

Keystone Law (KEYS) has resumed dividends following the interims. Revenues grew but the rate of growth slowed. Lawyer recruitment continues and Panmure Gordon has upgraded its 2020-21 earnings from 7.1p a share to 11.9p a share.

Billing and customer relationship management software provider Cerillion (CER) has gained its largest ever contract. This £11.2m contract underpins next year’s figures.

There was a small decline in interim revenues at freight management services provider Xpediator (XPD) and there are further cost saving benefits in the second half. Freight forwarding made a higher profit, although overall operating profit was flat. A 0.45p a share dividend was declared. NAV is 19.9p a share.

Filta Group Holdings (FLTA) has been hit by closures and weak trading in the catering sector. The commercial kitchen services franchise group says trading is recovering, but it is still down on previous levels. Revenues should be more than two-thirds of normal levels by the end of 2020.

Online security software provider Kape Technologies (KAPE) doubled revenues in the first half of 2020. Organic growth was 12% as more people working from home led to demand for Kape’s software products. There are still cost savings to come from the Private internet Access acquisition. Full year earnings per share are expected to increase from 6.5p to 13.3p.

Cloud-based payment services provider PCI Pal (PCIP) reported slightly higher than expected full year revenues of £4.4m, up from £2.8m the previous year. Total annual contract value is running at £6.7m and this underpins the current forecast for this year. PCI Pal will continue to lose money but the cash outflow will reduce.

Union Jack Oil (UJO) is raising £7m at 0.16p a share to cover the oil and gas company’s share of investment in the Wressle field and fund other work programmes and drilling.

Trading in Phimedix (PHM) shares has been suspended because the shell has not found a suitable acquisition. Prior to suspension, Steven Myers sold his 7.7% stake and Ali Mortazavi further reduced his stake from 8.15% to 7.7%.

MAIN MARKET

Tex Holdings (TXH) has decided to delist from the Main Market by 13 October. Trading has been suspended since 29 April 2019. Funding is required and the board believes it will be difficult to secure the cash as a listed company because of the requirement for a prospectus for a major share issue. Costs will also be reduced.

IMC Exploration (IMC) intends to accelerate its exploration programme at the North Wexford gold project. The drilling will be JORC compliant.

Papillon (PPHP) says due diligence on its potential mining acquisitions has been completed. Kilmapesa has recommenced gold production.

Castillo Copper Ltd (CCZ) says that it has verified high-grade copper and identified gold mineralisation at the Big One deposit, on the Mt Oxide project. There are plans to commence drilling.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 6 July 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has secured a diagnostics agreement with Somerset NHS Foundation Trust that is worth £19.1m over ten years, although it is initially for five years. Rutherford will supply imaging services from a facility in Taunton, which will be developed in partnership with Equitix. The service should start in the second half of 2021.

Good Energy (GOOD) says that it remains profitable, although smaller business energy demand was lower in the second quarter. Gross margins have been hit because excess energy had to be resold. Operational efficiencies have offset some of this effect. Cash collection has been strong. Four-fifths of customers have been transferred to the Kraken customer services system. This will help to reduce costs.

Shepherd Neame (SHEP) has negotiated additional bank facilities. Total debt facilities are £132.5m. The brewery has been generating income from increased sales to supermarkets and for export. The majority of the company’s pubs should reopen by the end of July.

Cannabis-focused investment company Greencare Capital (GRE) has raised £1.37m at 50p a share. That is double the original flotation price. Management is hopeful that it will make an initial investment in its favoured acquisition target in the near future.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) says that plant production levels at the Hellyer gold mine increased by 44% to more than 1.3 mtpa. NQ has completed the acquisition of the Beaconsfield gold mine in Tasmania.

British Honey Company (BHC) says sanitiser sales have enabled the company to achieve sales of 240% of budget in the past three months. BHC has swapped 4.5% of its shares for a 10% stake in List Distillery LLC. BHC has an option to buy the rest of the company for £4.5m plus up to £500,000 in contingent consideration.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) had an NAV of £7.55m (48.9p a share) at the end of February 2020.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) has changed its corporate adviser from Peterhouse to VSA. Tectonic has published full year figures to June 2019 and interims to December 2019. NAV was £2.49m at the end of 2019.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) generated sales of $3.64m of sales in the first quarter of 2020, compared with $3.85m in the same period last year. In 2019, revenues were $10.7m.

Human Brands is selling some of its brands, including Shinju Whisky, to Rogue Baron in return for shares and Gunsynd (GUN) will have its £379,000 convertible loan note novated to Rogue Baron, which has been granted EIS advanced reassurance. Rogue Baron plans to float on a UK market and this could trigger the issue of further shares to Gunsynd.

First Sentinel (FSEN) has supplied a £300,000 loan facility to Vox Markets. This is convertible into shares. So far, £250,000 has been advanced. Loan facilities totalling £500,000 have been provided to Ridercam Systems. A £130,000 investment has been made for a 7.4% stake in investment company Malaika. The company’s Australian subsidiary has provided a loan facility to energy producer Direct Energy Holdings.

Ecovista (EVTP) was withdrawn from the AQSE on 1 July. The day after it published interim figures to February 2020. There was £42,000 in cash and this should cover general running expenses. Management says that being quoted cost £60,000 a year. NAV is £735,000.

Formerly known as Welney, Quetzal Capital (WENP) has been readmitted to the market following a share consolidation of 100 existing shares into one new share and placing raising £22,000.

AIM

Cambridge Cognition (COG) continues to win new contracts and the first half order intake was £4.9m. The digital health business has increased its contracted order book to £7.5m. The company is on course to make a much lower loss in 2020.

Construction disputes and expert witness services provider Driver (DRV) improved its profit in the first half thanks to a good performance from its Asia Pacific businesses. However, the Middle East is still a problem and a strategic review is underway. Net cash was £3.3m at the end of March 2020 and it has increased since then. There is no dividend. The second half will be tougher, though.

Forex provider Equals (EQLS) continues its strong growth record in 2019. Trading levels were hit by the COVID-19 lockdown in April and May, but June’s revenues per day recovered to a similar level to June 2019. The administration of Wirecard has had limited effect on business.

AFC Energy (AFC) is raising £31.6m at 16p a share. This will be used to invest in manufacturing for the H-Power fuel cell systems and employing additional staff for the deployment of the technology in the electric vehicle and construction markets. There will also be cash put into the development of the AlkaMem anion exchange membrane and the HydroX-Cell solid-state membrane fuel cell system.

Telecoms equipment supplier Filtronic (FTC) says it grew revenues from continuing operations in the year to May 2020 and it made a small underlying profit. Delays to deliveries mean that it is difficult to assess the outcome for the current financial year.

Redx Pharma (REDX) is raising $29m through a convertible loan note issue to Redmile and Sofinnova Partners and £812,000 via a share issue to Sofinnova.

Robinson (RBN) is paying an interim dividend of 3.5p a share. The packaging supplier did not pay a final dividend and the interim will be payable on 30 July to make up for that. First half trading was in line with expectations. Full year pre-tax profit is expected to be flat at £2.3m.

MAIN MARKET

Trading in Lookers (LOOK) shares has been suspended because it has not published 2019 results. They should be published in August. An investigation by Grant Thornton suggests that there will be a £4m non-cash write-off relating to fraud with a further £15m non-cash write-off for incorrect or inconsistent accounting, mainly relating to stock.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 29 June 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Chapel Down Group (CDGP) increased sales last year, but the loss was also higher. Sales of wine and beer grew and revenues from continuing activities improved from £12.86m to £14.8m, while the loss more than doubled from £850,000 to £2.09m. the Chapel Down Gin Works in Kings Cross has been closed. There was still £2.47m in the bank at the end of 2019, even after the loss and £12m of investment in fixed assets and land. There are 428 acres of planted vineyard. Wine stocks have also increased following a good harvest. The Ashford brewery has been completed and full brewing capacity will be available before the end of the year. Martin Glenn is succeeding John Dunsmore as chairman.

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has entered into a £55m development framework agreement with Equitix, an investor in infrastructure assets. This will finance up to five diagnostic facilities in the UK. Each will be owned by a special purpose vehicle funded by Equitix and operated by Rutherford. An initial agreement has been made with a NHS Trust. Rutherford also announced a collaboration with Panthera Biopartners, which will be able to use Rutherford’s clinics for trials of potential cancer treatments.

Racing recommenced at Newbury Racecourse (NYR) on 11 June. Three race meetings have been held and five more are planned by the end of August. No public are being admitted. Revenues are coming from media rights. The Rocking Horse nursery reopened earlier this month.

Good Energy (GOOD) is increasing its investment in Next Green Car, which owns Zap-Map, to 50.1% through the exercise of a convertible loan.

BWA (BWAP) has spent £120,000 of the initial commitment of £250,000 for two rutile licence areas in Cameroon. Drilling programmes are being designed. COVID-19 has hampered progress with the company’s Canadian interests.

Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) says that investee company Factom Inc has filed for Cahpter 11 bankruptcy protection because of its failure to raise more cash. It could exit Chapter 11 protection within three months if things go to plan.The investment was valued at £237,000.

IamFire (FIRE) is reviewing strategies having raised £500,000 at 2.5p a share.  Each share comes with two warrants with an exercise price of 10p a share. The investment focus is natural resources, mining and disruptive technology.

SAPO (SAPO) is still seeking a broadband investment and net assets were £1.1m at the end of 2019. At 3.2p a share, SAPO is valued at £6m.

Gunsynd (GUN) has invested £137,750 in Rincon Resources, which gives it a stake of 28.4%. Rincon has the rights to three prospective gold and base metals projects in Western Australia. Gunsynd has sold its stake in United Oil and Gas (UOG).

All Star Minerals (ASMO) has raised a further £200,000 at 0.02p a share, taking the total raised in share issues to £280,000. Convertible loan notes worth £55,000 have been converted into 275 million shares with 34 million shares at 0.01p each to pay liabilities. This means that more than 1.3 billion shares have been issued, which has nearly doubled the shares in issue.

AIM

Recent trading at floorcoverings supplier Victoria (VCP) has exceeded expectations. Manufacturing has restarted in all the company’s plants. All the main countries are doing relatively well considering the disruption due to COVID-19 and in the most recent three weeks revenues were 85% of pre-COVID-19 budget. The UK carpets business is only just getting going again. Net debt is £370m, which is predominantly bonds that last until July 2024. Cash generation can reduce debt, although management is likely to look for potential acquisitions.

Wynnstay Group (WYN) reported a decline in interim revenues but that was due to lower commodity prices. The interim dividend has been maintained at 4.6p a share. The agriculture division maintained its operating profit, but there was an improved profit from the merchanting division. Pre-tax profit edged up from £4.3m to £4.5m. Shore Capital has reinstated forecasts. It expects a pre-tax profit of £6.7m, down from £7.9m. This id a deliberately cautious figure.

MSQ Partners has launched a 0.5p a share bid for Be Heard Group (HRD) and that values the digital media company at £6.2m. The acquirer was the subject of a buyout last year. The combined business will have the backing of Lloyds Development Capital and the greater scale will help to win larger clients.

United Oil and Gas (UOG) says that average production from the Abu Sennan concession in the first two weeks of June was 13,900 boepd, of which its working interest is 3,060 boepd. That is 69% higher than the average daily figure in April. The 2P reserves at Abu Sennan have been increased by 12.55 to 13.5MMboe

Transense Technologies (TRT) has transferred its iTrack tyre monitoring business to a Bridgestone subsidiary for $1m and it will receive quarterly royalty revenues for the next ten years. That royalty would be £150,000/ quarter currently, but growth should be faster under Bridgestone. Two Transense directors are moving with iTrack. This leaves Transense with its SAWsense (wireless tyre sensor technology) and Translogik (tyre test equipment) businesses. Transense could move into profit in 2021-22.

A positive trading statement from allergy vaccines developer Allergy Therapeutics (AGY) led finnCap to increase its 2020 pre-tax profit forecast even though revenue growth is slower than expected. A 2019-20 profit of £2.9m is expected, partly due to the timing of research spending. Allergy is expected to move back into loss in 2020-21.

Beximco Pharmaceuticals (BXP) increased its revenues and pre-tax profit in the nine months to March 2020, with particularly strong growth in the third quarter. There is some disruption to international distribution and supply and full year revenue growth will be lower than originally expected.

Dekel Agri-Vision (DKL) reported flat full year revenues of €20.9m for 2019. The loss was barely changed at €3.29m. There has been a decline in the palm oil price in recent months, which will hamper performance this year. The cashew project is making good progress.

MAIN MARKET

Strong first half trading at BATM Advanced Communication (BVC) has led to broker upgrades for 2020. The biomedical division has done particularly well, but the networks and cyber division has also done better than expected.  Stifel is raising its revenues forecast from $138m to $155m, while the EBITDA estimate has been increased by one-third to $13m. Shore Capital expects to increase forecast revenues by 17% to around $154m with a significant improvement in EBITDA expected.

Construction services provider nmcn (NMCN) made a positive start in the first quarter of this year. Revenues were 4% ahead at £97.9m and pre-tax profit 6% higher at £1.8m. This period was hardly affected by the lockdown. Since the end of March, work has been at three-quarters of normal levels. There was £11.8m in cash at the end of March 2020. The interims will be reported on 6 August and there should be guidance for the full year outcome.

Tex Holdings (TXH) expects to make further cost savings and consolidate more of its activities. The plastics division is operating at 70% of expected levels, while the engineering division has suffered delays but not lost business.

Standard list shell Boston International (BIH) had £302,000 in cash at the end of 2019. It is still assessing the proposed acquisition of invoice factoring company Alexanders Discount Ltd

Rainbow Rare Earths (RBW) has raised £1.25m at 3p a share. The cash will accelerate trial mining at the Gakara rare earth project in Burundi.

The 2019 figures of Ross Group (RGP) include pharmaceutical grade Chitin producer Archipelago Aquaculture Group (AAG) for the first time. There were restructuring and impairment costs relating to the acquisition. Pilot production is being implemented and there are joint venture discussions with the company that has developed the Ionic Liquid extraction process licenced by AAG. There was a £3.6m loss in 2019.

SMALL CAP AWARDS 2020

Company of the year: Volex

Technology company of the year: Avacta

Impact company of the year: ITM Power

IPO of the year: Diaceutics

Transaction of the year: Kape acquisition of Private Internet Access

Executive director of the year: David Cicurel (Judges Scientific)

Innovative financing of the year: Yu Group

Journalist of the year: Joanne Hart (Mail on Sunday)

Analyst of the year: Lorne Daniel (finnCap)

VCT manager of the year: Amati

UK smaller companies fund manager of the year: JPM UK Smaller Companies

Lifetime achievement award: Giles Hargreave

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 8 June 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Sativa Group (SATI) has agreed a merger with Stillcana Inc. The share swap is 0.33507 of a Stillcanna share for every Sativa share. That values the cannabis products company at £10.7m and its shareholders will own 65% of the enlarged group. Trading in Sativa shares restarted on 4 June.

Engineering businesses consolidator Vulcan Industries (VULC) floated on 1 June. It was valued at £6.98m at the 3p a share placing price. Vulcan raised £746,500 via a subscription and placing and £239,000 will be spent on costs. . Vulcan has already completed four acquisitions. They supply automotive components, fire doors and frames, nails and architectural metal work. Trading was weaker than expected last year. Zanete Fergusone sold three businesses to Vulcan and her family interests own 47.7% of the company. A manufacturer of pressed steel bearing housings is set to be the next acquisition.

Adnams (ADB) has put its refinancing negotiations on hold since the COVID-19 lockdown. The long-term facilities have been extended by six months. Adnams is considering the government loan scheme. There will be a substantial interim loss.

IFA group AFH Financial (AFHP) believes that £3m of temporary annualised cost savings will help to offset a decline in gross revenues this year. Interim revenues were 5% ahead at £38.2m but pre-tax profit was flat due to higher interest costs. The interim dividend is 5p a share, instead of the anticipated 7p a share. A further 2p a share may be paid later in the year depending on the prospects at the time. Underlying full year pre-tax profit should improve from £16.9m to £18m, which is a small downgrade on previous forecasts.

Good Energy (GOOD) has seen no significant financial impact from COVID-19. Cash collection has been in line with previous years. The generation assets have produced above average output. The final dividend has been deferred.

Altona Energy (ANR) is assessing the potential acquisition of a majority stake in a rare earths project. The Chambe project is in Southern Malawi. Due diligence will take up to three months.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) has sold a majority interest in Tectonic South Africa to AIM-quoted Kazera Global. Tectonic will retain a 10% interest in the diamonds project. Tectonic has received £100,000.

Investment company Gledhow Investments (GDH) increased net assets from £735,000 to £907,000 by March 2020. Gledhow had £147,000 in cash at the end of March.

Welney (WENP) has published full year and interim figures. At the end of December 2019, net liabilities were £361,000. A consolidation of 100 shares into one new share will be followed by a £15,000 placing at 0.3p a share. A loan stock issue will raise £35,000. Trading in the shares restarted on 3 June. Keith, Bayley, Rogers has been appointed as corporate adviser. The company’s name will be changed to Quetzal Capital

Black Sea Property (BSP) is renegotiating its credit facilities. Management is uncertain how trading will fair this year.

Lombard Capital (LCAP) is changing its accounting reference date from 31 March to 30 June. Barry Fromson has been appointed as an executive director.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has raised £300,000 at 1.35p a share and issued £70,000 worth of share for fees and to convert loans. Peterhouse has replaced Turner Pope as broker.

AIM

Mereo Biopharma (MPH) has raised $70m (£56m) including $19.4m (£15.5m) via a share placing at 17.4p each and $50.6m (£40.5m) through a convertible loan note issue. The cash will be used to reduce debt and fund the company into 2022. Mereo plans a phase 1b study for cancer treatment etigilimab during the fourth quarter.

Life sciences IT services provider Instem (INS) continues to trade strongly and net cash was £8.3m at the end of April 2020. The 2019 figures show a rise in pre-tax profit from £2.8m to £3.2m and a jump to £4.2m is expected in 2020. Existing business continues but new business may take longer to secure, and this led to a small downgrade.

Amryt Pharma (AMYT) has signed a distribution agreement with Swixx BioPharma for leptin deficiency treatment Myalepta in 17 eastern European countries.

Armadale Capital (ACP) says that the definitive feasibility study update has increased the NPV of the Mahenge Liandu graphite project in Tanzania by 20% to $430m. That is based on a 30% rise in average annual production.

Bidstack (BIDS) has raised £5.5m at 4p a share. The in-game advertising technology developer will use the cash to expand internationally and fund marketing and further technology development.

Telematics firm Quartix (QTX) says that subscriptions have held up and installations are recovering after an initial slump in April. Trading in the first four months of 2020 was ahead of the same time last year. Some clients have been allowed payment deferrals. There is £9.5m in the bank.

President Energy (PPC) has raised £2.24m at 1.85p a share via PrimaryBid. A placing raised a further £2.5m. Trafigura is subscribing a further $6m at the same share price. Along with a $4.1m debt for equity swap this will reduce debt to around $15m. There will be a $98.5m write down of assets, particularly the Paraguay exploration activities. Even excluding this, there will be a loss this year. The crude oil reference price in Argentina has been set at $45/barrel until the end of the year, which is higher than the current global price.

MAIN MARKET

Tex Holdings (TXH) improved sales and gross margins last year, but there was still a slightly increased pre-tax loss due to redundancies and professional fees. Revenues increased from £40.1m to £43.1m, and if exceptional costs are stripped out there was a decrease in pre-tax loss to £661,000. The plastics division is profitable, but the engineering division is losing money. The overdraft has been repaid with the proceeds of a shareholder loan. The pension surplus has increased NAV from 127p a share to 134p a share. There are plans to reduce costs by an annualised £1.5m.

LED lighting supplier Luceco (LUCE) says trading has improved in recent weeks and it expects the first half profit and cash generation to be at least as good as the same period last year. That is despite lower revenues.

Motor dealer Lookers (LOOK) is closing 12 more dealership sites. Annual savings of £50m are anticipated. Trading has recommenced at Lookers sites, but activity is still weak. Net debt was £57m at the end of May.

Andrew Hore

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