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Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 6 September 2021

aquis stock exchangeAQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE
Rutherford Healthcare (RUTH) says a UK investor has agreed to acquire 19 million shares at 65p each. That will raise £12.35m. Rutherford is also issuing 64 million shares to acquire UAE-based Proton Partners International Health Care Investments, which owns the Gulf International Cancer Center in Abu Dhabi.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) has made a new investment in Craft Prospect, a Glasgow-based satellite engineering business. There will be £800,000 invested in ordinary shares for a 11.3% stake. The cash will be used for recruitment and product development.

VSA Capital Group plans to join the Aquis Stock Exchange on 9 September. It was previously quoted on AIM, although it cancelled the quotation in April 2013. London-based VSA provides corporate finance and broking services and has an office in Shanghai. In the year to March 2021, the main subsidiary VSA Capital increased revenues from £2.14m to £2.98m and pre-tax profit jumped from £278,000 to £746,000. Group net assets were £4m at the end of March 2021.

Polygon Global Partners has increased its bid for Watchstone Group (WTG) to 38p a share, up from 34p a share, which values the company at £17.5m. Watchstone still believes the bid is too low. In the middle of August 2021, there was £14.1m in the bank and £1.8m in escrow. There are potential litigation claims on top of that.

KR1 (KR1) has participated in the Moonriver (MOVR) crowdloan and Kusama (KSM) parachain auction. KR1 contributed 5,000 KSM to the crowdloan auction. In return KR1 has received 19,666,35 MOVR and will receive a further 45,888.15 over 48 weeks. KR1 has already sold 15,643.19 MOVR in return for 5,162.25 KSM. KR1 also invested $500,000 in return for Exponent (XPN) tokens. Exponent is an open source platform.

In the year to December 2020, MiLOC Group Ltd (ML.P) increased revenues from HK$15.4m to $20.5m and it moved from loss to a profit of HK$6.22m. The healthcare company sharply reduced its distribution costs and other admin expenses. This reflected the termination of an endorsement agreement and a write-back of a previous over provision for fees.

First half revenues of Yooma Wellness Inc (YOOM) were $2.78m, with $2.18m generated in the second quarter. The interim loss was $5.5m.

Wishbone Gold (WSBN) has identified seven targets at the Cottesloe project in Western Australia.

Eight Capital Partners (ECP) has launched an issue of €25m 4.8% five-year bonds that will be listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange. They will help to refinance existing bonds.

Evrima (EVA) is raising £720,000 at 5p a share plus warrants to subscribe for shares at 10p each. This will finance investments in existing investee companies and new investments.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised a further £163,000 at 1.7003p a share.

AIM
Capital equipment manufacturer Mpac (MPAC) had a strong first half with a combination of acquisitive and organic growth in the Americas. Revenues were one-fifth higher at £44.2m, with organic growth of 2%. Pre-tax profit was 88% higher at £4.7m. Net cash was £10.3m at the end of June 2021. Healthcare and food have been the main markets for the company’s packaging and automation equipment, but a new contract has been signed to supply battery cell assembly equipment. The full year pre-tax profit forecast has been upgraded to £8.2m.

Bigblu Broadband (BBB) is returning £26m to shareholders following the recent disposal of Quickline. That will be 45p a share in cash via the issue of B shares by October. There should still be net cash of £1.7m at the ned of November 2021 with deferred consideration due next year. Interim revenues from continuing operations improved from £10.6m to £13.1m. Growth is coming from Australasia, but the Nordic region is expected to return to growth next year.

Mercia Asset Management (MERC) has made a £1.6m direct investment in Locate Bio, which had previously been backed by the manager’s funds. Locate Bio’s products help to accelerate the repair of bone and cartilage. The total of £10m raised by the company will be used to support trials of its technology.

Pennant International (PEN) says interim revenues improved by 17% thanks to a strong performance by the software division. The three-year contracted order book has fallen to £25m, but there are potential contracts in the pipeline. Pennant should return to profit this year.

Interim revenues have trebled to £820,000 at in-game digital advertising firm Bidstack (BIDS), but there is still a long way to go before it reaches profitability. Losses will continue in 2021 and 2022, although there is enough cash in the bank to cover these, following a £10.8m fundraising.

Trading at Manchester-based Northcoders (CODE) has been strong since the software training company joined AIM during the summer. Applications are 162% of 2019 levels and there is 90% revenue visibility for 2021. There are plans to open a new office in Birmingham.

Real-time financial data software provider Arcontech (ARC) reported flat full year revenues and pre-tax profit of £3m and £1.1m respectively. Even so, the dividend was raised by 10% to 2.75p a share.

Bangladesh Bank has approved the acquisition of a majority stake in Sanofi Bangladesh by Beximco Pharmaceuticals (BXP).

MAIN MARKET
Innovaderma (IDP) has completed its product portfolio review and medical device products have been classed as non-core. Packaging of core personal care products has been refreshed and they are available via Amazon. There are plans to use influencers to build sales.

Dealings have commenced in Caracal Gold (GCAT) following its acquisition of Kilmapesa gold mine. There are plans to increase production to 50,000 ounces of gold each year.

One Heritage Group (OHG) has become aware of financial issues with owned associate company One Heritage Maintenance, where it owns the equivalent of a 34% stake. The stake was valued at £285,000.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 12 July 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Helium Ventures (LON: HEV) is a shell seeking to acquire a business in the upstream natural gas sector, with a focus on helium. It raised £765,000, after expenses, at 10p a share. This followed placings at 1p a share and 5p a share. The underlying value of Helium Ventures cash is 4.9p a share. The share price jumped to 16p (14p/18p) on the first day of trading. That values the company at £2.69m.

Virgata Services did not receive the requisite acceptances for its bid for Walls & Futures REIT (WAFR) and the 10.2% of the share capital that accepted the offer are no longer bound by the acceptances.

KR1 (KR1) has made three new investments. There was a $100,000 investment in the iTrust seed round and it will receive iTrust tokens. A further $50,000 was invested in 625,000 Clover tokens. The largest of the investments was the $400,000 spent on nearly 20.7 million DIVER (Divergence) tokens.

Altona Rare Earths (ANR) has decided not to exercise its option to acquire 51% of the owner of the Nankoma mining project in Uganda because of its inability to carry out due diligence.

Newbury Racecourse (NYR) has signed a media rights agreement with Arena Leisure covering all fixtures until the end of 2028. This replaces existing rights agreements expiring in 2023.

EPE Special Opportunities Ltd (ESO) had an NAV of 582.13p a share at the end of June 2021.

AIM

Ilika (IKA) has raised £18m through a placing at 140p a share and a further £3m from a retail offer via PrimaryBid. An open offer could raise up to £3.7m. The share price was 200p before the fundraising. The cash will finance the development of Goliath battery pouch cells until they exceed the performance of lithium ion batteries and increase the capacity of the pre-pilot line.

Managed IT and networking services provider AdEPT Technology (ADT) will benefit from its earnings enhancing acquisition of Datrix in 2021-22. In the year to March 2021, revenues fell by 6% to £57.9m, while pre-tax profit fell from £7.7m to £6.2m. There was 9% growth in fourth quarter revenues. Management has taken advantage of the past year to restructure the business. . A three-year, £70m bank facility was agreed during March, so there is plenty of funding for other acquisitions.

CMO Group (CMO) is the largest online retailer of building materials in a market where pure online businesses still have a relatively small share. CMO raised £27.3m at 132p a share and existing shareholders raised £17.7m. Pro forma revenues, including Total Tiles which was acquired at the end of 2020, were £67m and pre-tax profit was £1.05m. The share price ended the week at 155.5p.

California-based LungLife AI (LLAI) is developing the LungLB lung cancer diagnostic test. The plan is to have a commercial test available in the US by 2023. It raised £17m at 176p a share and ended the week at 202.5p. LungLB is a blood-based test intended to identify cancerous and benign lung nodules that have been seen through a CT scan. Two-fifths of biopsies following the identification of nodules are not required and the test can stop them happening.

Saietta (SED) has raised nearly £32m, after expenses, at 120p a share to complete the development of its aerial flux motor technology and build a production facility for the motors. Liquid cooled aerial flux motor technology (AFT) has been developed for use with motorcycles and small vehicles. AFT motors are modular in design and highly efficient – reducing the need for additional batteries. There can be high or low voltage versions. The AFT 140 is the motor developed by Saietta. The share price was 121.5p at the end of the week.

Mercia Asset Management (MERC) made an underlying operating profit of £3.3m in the year to March 2021 and on top of that there were significant realised and unrealised gains. The NAV is 40p a share.

There were 97% of rents collected by Real Estate Investors (RLE) in the first half. Occupancy is lower at 83.4% because of the expected ends to certain tenancies, but management believes that the occupancy will recover by the end of the year as the space is rented out. NAV is expected to decline from 55.2p a share to 54.7p a share by the end of 2021.

Kinovo (KINO) is the new name for electrical and buildings services provider Bilby. In the year to March 2022, revenues declined from £65.4m to £60.2m and underlying pre-tax profit fell from £3.69m to £2.36m. The balance sheet is certainly stronger thanks to cash generated from operations. Net debt is down to £2.7m and combined with a recovering share price there may be chances to make acquisitions. There is a 0.5p a share dividend.

MAIN MARKET

Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies (OCTP) has signed an agreement with Evotec that should increase the development speed for the OCT461201. It will help to prove the tolerability and safety of the compound.

Tirupati Graphite (TGR) has signed a marketing agreement with Japan-based Hanwa, which will expand markets for flake and speciality graphite products to south east Asia. Hanwa is already a joint venture partner with Bacanora Lithium.

GC Hevron has proposed a reorganisation of Plaza Centres (PLAZ) and the board has decided to allow GC Hevron to conduct due diligence. The proposal will be put to bondholders on 13 July.

finnCap has downgraded its forecast for InnovaDerma (IDP). The forecast 2020-21 revenues have been cut by £700,000 to £10.2m, although better gross margins should mean that the loss will be similar to previously forecast. A small profit is still forecast for 2021-22.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 3 May 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Decentralised finance (DeFi) focused investment company Dispersion Holdings (DEFI) raised £9m at 3p a share. The share price closed at 4.15p (3.8p/4.5p) and there were just over one million shares traded on the first day. The market capitalisation is £25.4m. Shares were originally issued at below the placing price and the underlying NAV is 1.8p a share. Dispersion has already made two investments, although one of those is a £210,000 investment in NFT Investments, which has management in common, at the equivalent of 7p a share. NFT’s placing was at 5p a share and the investment was made after the shares commenced trading. Since then, the share price has fallen to 3.85p (3.7p/4p).

Semper Fortis Esports (SEMP) has the management experience to exploit the fast-growing esports sector. The board includes football adviser Keith Harris. Chief executive Kevin Soltani was a co-owner of an esports franchise in MENA and co-founded the GIMA Esports Agency with chief operating officer Jassem Osseiran. The Semper Fortis Esports shareholder register includes the likes of Chris Akers. Semper Fortis Esports raised £2.5m, after expenses, at 1p a share. Pro forma net assets are £2.13m, with £2.15m cash in the bank. The pro forma NAV is just over 0.5p a share. The share price ended the week at 3.95p (3.8p/4.1p).

Greencare Capital (GRE) has invested £100,000 in Voyager Life, as part of a £671,000 before an Aquis flotation. Voyager Life supplies CBD and hemp seed oil products. This follows the £100,000 investment in CBD products supplier Clearly Supplements in the form of a 5% convertible loan. The Covid-19 pandemic and legislation changes hampered the planned reverse takeover, and it did not go ahead. There should still be more than £1m in cash in the balance sheet after the investments.

Revenues fell 59% to £8.49m at Newbury Racecourse (NYR) and there was a loss of £2.27m. Only four race meetings had people attending last year. There were 20 race days last year and there will be ten by 17 May this year. There was £1.5m raised from the sale of surplus land. There was £5.53m in the bank at the end of 2020. Net assets were £48.9m, down from £51.4m.

Spirits maker British Honey (BHC) says that first quarter revenues, excluding hand sanitisers, increased by one-quarter to £1.33m. The integration of Union Distillers is nearly complete. A new bottling line will increase capacity to four million bottles a year by the end of 2021. A new bottling line for miniatures is also being installed.

Gunsynd (GUN) has made a £200,000 in DiscovOre (ORE) at 2p a share. DiscovOre is changing its investing strategy to focus on the medical psychedelic sector.

Supported housing provider Walls and Futures REIT (WAFR) says that NAV has fallen by 5% to 102p a share. John D Wood values the company’s properties at £3.2m. The company collected 100% of rents last year. Virgata Services has to publish an offer document by 6 May.

Primorus Investments (PRIM) has invested $2.5m in convertible loan notes in standard listed Mustang Energy (MUST) as part of a fundraising to pay for a 22.1% stake in VFFB-H, which owns 50% of Enerox, an Austria-based vanadium redox flow battery manufacturer. AIM-quoted Bushveld Minerals (BMN) is the majority shareholder in VFFB-H. Enerox plans to raise £30m. Trading has been suspended in Mustang Energy shares.

Altona Rare Earths (ANR) is proceeding with the acquisition of the Monte Muambe rare earths project. The contract is being finalised and then Altona will start the earn-in to progress towards a 70% stake in the project. Altona is still assessing other projects. An application has been filed for a standard listing.

Angelfish Investments (ANGP) has raised £42,000 at 0.00258065 a share, plus £90,000 via a convertible loan facility at the same conversion price as the placing. Simon Grant-Rennick has been appointed executive chairman and Burns Singh Tennent Bhohi, who has taken a 14.8% stake, as an executive director.

Two locations have shown strong gold intersection at surfaces at NQ Minerals (NQMI) 100%-owned Beaconsfield gold mine in Tasmania. The surface potential could add significant resources to Beaconsfield.

Positive results have been reported by BWA Group (BWAP) from the sampling at the Nkoteng rutile sands project in Cameroon. There are elevated intervals of rutile-ilmenite, zircon and kyanite over continuous zones.

SulNOx Group (SNOX) has signed an Africa-focused distribution agreement with Rigworld Solutions. This formalises and earlier agreement.

Watchstone Group (WTG) has made the switch from AIM to Aquis.

Coinsilium (COIN) has raised £18,500 from the sale of treasury shares at 18.5p each.

AIM

Hurricane Energy (HUR), which at one time was a constituent of the AIM 50, is restructuring its balance sheet. This would involve swapping $50m of the principal of the company’s convertible bonds into 95% of the enlarged share capital. The terms of the remaining $180m of bonds will be amended. The business will focus on extending the oil production case for the Lancaster 205/21a-6 well.

Construction services consultancy Driver (DRV) says that its latest underlying interim profit will be slightly lower than for the same period last year, which was £1.25m. That is a strong comparative period. Lockdowns have varied in the different operational countries. Driver also lost a team in Asia Pacific to a rival. The focus is higher margin work and activity levels are improving. Net cash was £7.2m at the end of March 2021. The interims will be published on 8 June.

Pennant International (PEN) fell into loss in 2020 and it should manage to return to profit this year. Forecast revenues of £16m are 90% covered by the order book. Pennant wants to win more business in the rail sector.

Pollen Street Capital is bidding 75p a share for spend control software supplier Proactis (PHD) and the board is recommending the offer, which values the company at £71.6m. Pollen Street has the finance to accelerate growth. The bid is at 24 times prospective 2020-21 earnings, falling to 19 next year.

Building software supplier Eleco (ELCO) says that first quarter revenues were 9% ahead at £7m, while year-on-year pre-tax profit was one-fifth higher. Net cash was £7.9m at the end of March 2021. A general meeting has been requisitioned so that shareholders can vote on the re-election of executive chairman Serena Lang and non-executive director Kevin Craig, a resolution to make it compulsory for all directors to come up for re-election at every AGM and a vote on the remuneration report in the 2020 accounts.

Cosmetics supplier Warpaint London (W7L) had an improved second half and momentum is continuing into next year. In 2020, revenues fell from £49.3m to £40.3m, but earnings halved from 6.3p a share to 3.1p a share.

President Energy (PPC) expects to bring the EV-1001 well on the Estancia Vieja gas field into production during May. The drill rig will be moved to the next location. President is expected to return to profit in 2020.

Amiad Water Systems (AFS) plans to transfer its quotation to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

MAIN MARKET

In 2020, Argo Blockchain (ARB) increased revenues from £8.6m to £19m, but it made a small loss. Cash inflow from operating activities was £12.3m, according to finnCap. This year a pre-tax profit of £30m is forecast, although working capital will consume most of the cash generated even before significant capital expenditure.

Moulded plastic parts manufacturer Carclo (CAR) says that it has maintained its full year revenues for plastics, but there was a decline in aerospace revenues, and made a profit. Net debt has been reduced from £22.1m to £20m.

InnovaDerma (IDP) raised an additional £500,000 in an open offer and that took the total raised to £4.5m. This will fund ecommerce investment.

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 25 January 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has signed contracts with the NHS that underpin a significant proportion of its fixed costs. More cash will be required in order to take advantage of the potential for the cancer care clinics. The cash will be needed in the next few months and could be raised at the same time as moving to AIM. Capacity of the Cardiff site could be fully utilised in 2021 and patients have been booked in at three other sites.

Broadband services provider Rural Broadband Solutions (RBBS) has grown its number of connections to 2,500 by the start of January and is signing up 25 a month. Digital marketing is being increased to attract clients that have access to the Rural Gigabit voucher funding scheme. There is interest from 300 households so the company can apply for £1m of government funding. The target is 5,000 monthly paying customers by October 2023.

S-Ventures (SVEN) has acquired 75.1% of We Love Purely Ltd by issuing 1.53 million shares at 9p a share, which is equivalent to £137,600 and paying off a loan of £30,000. We Love Purely is a snacks supplier and it sells Purely plantain chips. Under new ownership the product range will be expanded. Two S-Ventures directors held shares in the acquired company.

Investment company Gledhow Investments (GDH) raised £1.69m from investment disposals in the year to September 2020. That generated a profit of £508,000 after admin expenses. NAV increased from £884,000 to £1.3m. That includes £382,000 of cash compared with a market capitalisation of £539,000.

Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) says that the value of its crypto currency position has increased by two-fifths. On 21 January, there was cash of $1.5m, which is mainly crypto currencies. There are also $164,000 of RIF tokens that will vest over 22 months.

Gunsynd (GUN) has converted part of its loan to Rogue Baron at 3.97p a share and that gives it a 19.7% stake in the drinks company. Once Rogue Baron joins Aquis Stock Exchange the rest of the loan stock will be converted. Warrants have been exercised that raised £200,000 for Gunsynd.

Engineer Vulcan Industries (VULC) says third quarter trading was in line with expectations. Third quarter revenues were 14% higher the second quarter at £1.6m. Order books are strong. The proposed acquisition of E Lowe will not happen.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) has maintained its NAV at 52.75p a share at the end of November 2020. There are 16 investments in the portfolio.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) has filed a draft prospectus for its move to the standard list.

Dozens Savings has issued just over £1m of retail bonds and demand is outstripping supply.

AIM

Business restructuring company Begbies Traynor (LSE: BEG) has acquired rival CVR Global for up to £20.8m, which is its largest acquisition. CVR’s annual profit was £1.2m and there are potential cost savings of £750,000 a year.

Beximco Pharmaceuticals (BXP) is acquiring Sanofi Bangladesh for £35.5m. The deal is still subject to regulatory approval. This will broaden the product range and helps the group move into new sectors. It will also add more manufacturing capacity. The deal should be earnings enhancing. Sanofi made a pre-tax profit of £4.3m in 2019.

Ground engineering contractor Van Elle (VANL) made a loss in the first half of 2020-21 and trading remains mixed. Interim revenues fell by 21% due to the original lockdown and delayed rail work, but there should be a recovery in the second half. Cost reductions are coming through and helping to stem the loss. This puts Van Elle in a stronger position for the next financial year. Improving utilisation of equipment will help the company return to profit and start paying dividends again.

Acoustic materials supplier Autins (AUTG) would have reported halved second-hand revenues without the contribution from PPE. Full year revenues fell from £26.9m to £21.5m as one major automotive customer was hit by production problems. The loss increased from £1.54m to £1.76m. The high depreciation charge means that £1.48m of cash was generated from operations during the year. The Neptune product is gaining new contracts, particularly for electric vehicles.

Flexible printed circuit technology developer Trackwise Designs (TWD) disappointed the market with its trading statement. Growth in revenues has been slower than expected due to short-term problems, but finnCap has maintained its 2021 forecast, which predicts a rise in revenues from £6.2m to £14.2m. That would be enough to make the company profitable.

Alumasc (LSE: ALU) traded ahead of expectations in the six months to December 2020 and this has led to a large upgrade in the full year pre-tax profit forecast to £8.9m. There has been a bounce back in building and construction activity.

Trans-Siberian Gold (TSG) produced 15,217 ounces of gold at the Asacha mine in the fourth quarter, taking the total for the year to 45,066 ounces. Annual revenues were $81m. Production has stopped at Vein 25 because of an accident that killed two people. Mining in the main zone continues.

CCTV equipment supplier UniVision Engineering Ltd (UVEL) has signed a supplementary agreement with MTR Corp in Hong Kong for an additional £1.53m of work.

Jade Road Investments (JADE) is the new name for Adamas Finance Asia.

MAIN MARKET

LED lighting and wiring accessories supplier Luceco (LUCE) traded at the top of expectations in 2020, helped by a strong second half. Pre-tax profit will be around £29m, up from £15.8m in 2019. Cash generation is strong and net debt has declined to £18.3m.

Castillo Copper (CCZ) is considering selling its Broken Hill Alliance (BHA) project. This will enable the company to focus on the Mt Oxide project in Queensland, where there have been positive drilling results. Plans are being made to accelerate the development of this project. There should be more news about the other assays from the drilling and there will be modelling of a JORC resource. It makes sense to focus on this asset. BHA has is highly prospective for silver, zinc and lead in the west zone and iron oxide copper gold in the east zone. There should be interest from companies operating in the region. BHA could be sold or spun off into a quoted vehicle.

Personal care products supplier InnovaDerma (IDP) is raising £4m from a placing with up to £500,000 more to come from an open offer. This cash will finance investment in ecommerce and improve the balance sheet. The business continues to lose money. It could be profitable in 2021-22.

Argo Blockchain (ARB) has raised £22.4m at 80p a share and the cash will be invested in more crypto currency mining equipment. This will be installed between February and June. Capacity will be increased by nearly three-fifths.

Strong footwear sales helped Zotefoams (ZTF) to achieve slightly higher revenues in 2020 with pre-tax profit at the top end of expectations.

Flavour ingredients supplier Treatt (TET) continues to perform strongly in the first four months of the financial year. Drinks volumes have increased despite Covid-19 restrictions and this has helped Treatt. Forecasts have been raised with the 2020-21 pre-tax profit figure increased from £15.2m to £18.2m.

Tiziana Life Sciences (TILS) has switched from AIM to the Main Market.

Pensana Rare Earths (PRE) will drop the ASX listing on 24 February.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 18 January 2021

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

British Honey (BHC) generated revenues of £1.5m in the nine months to December 2020 with more sales online. There was £2.4m in the bank.

Rutherford Health (RUTH) has agreed to provide cancer treatment to NHS Trusts and clinical commissioning groups in England. The initial agreement is for two years.

A subsidiary of Noble Group has sent a letter of intent to Eastinco Mining and Exploration (EM.P) saying it wasn’t to purchase a significant portion of tantalum and tine production from Musasa in Rwanda. There will be immediate payment on agreement of the grade. There has been a further cash injection of £150,000.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) has discovered further gold mineralisation at Specimen Hill in Queensland. There is a 100% success rate with holes drilled. A drilling programme has started at Mt Cassidy and once completed drilling will recommence at Specimen Hill at the sites that are prospective for copper.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) says that the Hellyer mine in Australia produced 38,319 tonnes of lead concentrate, up 53%, and 19,019 tonnes of zinc concentrate, up 22%, in 2020. There was 5,452 ounces of gold and 1.1 million ounces of silver produced. Gross revenues were A$63.3m and net income was A$22.7m.

Preliminary sampling at one of the Cameroon licences owned by BWA Group (BWAP) has identified mineralisation. The Dehane project has elevated titanium, zircon and aluminium multi-element associations. More cash is required to fund further exploration.

Gunsynd (GUN) says that Peterhouse has been appointed as corporate adviser to Rogue Baron ahead of a proposed flotation on Aquis in the first quarter. Rogue Baron is a spirits company and Gunsynd has a £500,000 convertible repayable at the end of March. The Gunsynd NAV increased from £2.36m to £2.47m at the end of July 2020. There was £838,000 in the bank.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised £100,000 at 4.5p a share. SulNOx Group (SNOX) has raised £50,100 at 41.75p a share. Further cash will be required. Altona Energy (ANR) has raised a further £42,000 at 6.5p a share. MiLOC Group (ML.P) has raised £237,000 at 28.5p a share and started litigation against a distributor.

Walls and Futures REIT (WAFR) boos Joe McTaggart has bought 30,409 shares at 49p each.

AIM

Toilet tissue manufacturer Accrol (ACRL) reported strong interims even before a contribution from the recently acquired LTC. In the six months to October 2020, revenues slipped from £64.5m to £62.3m but that reflects panic buying in the last two months of the previous year that reduced this year’s figure. A contribution from LTC should increase full year revenues from £135m to £154m and pre-tax profit could nearly double to £9.2m. Accrol intends to pay a final dividend of 0.5p a share.

Online fashion retailer Sosandar (SOS) reported a 6% increase in revenues to December 2020, following a £1.6m reduction in marketing spend – mainly in December. This includes growing sales via John Lewis and Next. The loss was more than halved. Net cash was £3.9m at the end of 2020.

Kromek (KMK) reported a 14% decline in interim revenues to £4.58m, which was a resilient performance considering the disruption in the period. Kromek has moved into a net debt position but management is confident that it has enough funds for its requirements. The second half should be stronger. The long-term outlook for MRI, imaging and radiation detection products remains positive.

Battery technology developer Ilika (IKA) is on course for Stereax battery production to be scaled up by the beginning of 2022 and more significant revenues will flow through from then on. The total investment is £4m. The pilot line is running at full capacity so there is unlikely to be growth in short-term revenues. There is also the longer-term potential for Goliath batteries for electric vehicles. There should be £9m in the bank at the end of April 2021.

Voucher products supplier Appreciate (APP) had a strong third quarter and free cash reached £33.5m. The focus on digital products is paying off.

Law firm Gateley (GTLY) grew earnings by 7% in the first half, but full year earnings are expected to decline from 12.5p a share to 9.1p a share. There could be scope for an upgrade if utilisation levels remain high.

Ariana Resources (AAU) says that the 50%-owned Kiziltepe mine produced 18,645 ounces of gold in 2020. The processing plant capacity is being quadrupled.

Filtronic (FTC) has won a contract with more than £1m with a UK defence customer. Filtronic will design and supply battlefield communications hardware.

In 2020, Dekel Agri-Vision (DKL) increased palm oil production by 24% to 4,824MT and the average price obtained was ahead by a similar percentage. The price has started 2021 at a much higher level and even if the price does not stay as high Dekel should be able to at least move nearer to profit in 2021.

Franchise Brands (FRAN) will report 2020 figures ahead of consensus. The business has been strongly cash generative and the consumer-facing franchises did better in the second half. Metro Rod was classed as an essential service and trading recovered after an initial slump. Allenby forecasts 2020 earnings of 4.3p a share and this could improve to 4.8p a share in 2021.

Environmental and life sciences company Deepverge (DVRG) generated revenues of £4.4m in 2020 before any contribution from the recently acquired Modern Water. This year’s revenues should more than double, although the business should still lose money. There are large projects that are being bid for that could contribute to this year.

SourceBio International (SBI) has signed a deal with a high street retailer to provide lab testing services. This will start with a limited number of stores and could then be broadened. Demand for Covid testing is likely to continue to be high for many months.

MAIN MARKET

BATM Advanced Communication (BVC) has secured an option deal to sell its NGSoft communications technology services business to Aztek Technologies for $33m in cash. This is around ten times operating profit. The cash can be reinvested into the other activities.

Telecoms business Toople (TOOP) increased revenues from £2.45m to £3.44m and gross profit from £479,000 to £1.1m in the year to September 2020. The purchase of DMSL helped to grow revenues. Admin expenses were slightly higher at £2.44m. The underlying pre-tax loss edged up from £1.24m to £1.31m. That excludes a £1.1m provision for bad debts and restructuring costs. Directors pay increased from £278,000 to £312,239 last year. Net debt was nearly £1m at the end of September 2020. Debt in the form of a loan note is repayable at the end of 2022. The cash outflow from operating activities reduced from £2m to £1.6m.

InnovaDerma (IDP) reported a one-fifth decline in interim revenues. The personal care products supplier was hit by the closure of high street shops in the UK. International sales improved. The new chief executive is still assessing the business and will report plans and impairment charges in the coming weeks. A non-executive director is loaning the company £500,000 until 13 July.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 26 October 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Truspine Technologies (TSP) says that the latest tests of Cervi-Lok, which is a spinal stabilisation device, have been positive. The tests used a computer-generated model and it showed that Cervi-Lok had a reduction in range of motion that was better than existing screw-based fixation systems. FDA clearance is expected early next year.

Vulcan Industries (VULC) is acquiring the business and assets of Romar Process Engineering for £550,000 in cash and shares. Romar is a metal fabrication business and in the nine-months to July 2020 it made a pre-tax profit of £202,000 on revenues of £732,000. The group will be able to undertake larger contracts and some production will be transferred to the Romar facility. The exclusivity period for the proposed acquisition of E Lowe has been extended.

Early Equity (EEQP) has bought a 1% stake in Lotto Studios for £50,000. Lotto licences entertainment and sports brands for lottery and casino games. Early Equity believes that it can help with opportunities in Asia.

Gunsynd (GUN) has sold its 600,000 shares in Bunker Hill Mining raising £164,000. The investment company has reinvested £146,000 in Empress Royalty Corp.

Graham Lyon has stepped down as non-executive chairman and Majken Korsgaard has resigned as non-executive director of SulNOx Group (SNOX) and this means that trading in the shares has been suspended because there is no independent director. Nicholas Nelson has been reappointed as a director. Shipleys has resigned as auditor. Resolutions allowing the company to issue more shares were not passed at the AGM.

Tectonic Gold (TTAU) says that it is progressing towards drilling at the Specimen Hill prospect in Queensland. Samples have returned assays of more than 3.5g/t gold and more than 45g/t silver.

Chairman Robert Sutcliffe has been buying shares in DXS International (DXSP).

Rural Broadband Solutions (RBBS) has started trading following the reverse takeover of Secure Web Services by SAPO. Chris Akers has a 3.29% stake.

Shares in Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) have started trading on OTCQB Venture Market in the US.

AIM

Vianet (VNET) says that interim trading was ahead of Covid-19 revised expectations. There has been a month-on-month improvement in cash and profit during the period. New restrictions on hospitality outlets could hamper progress. The interims will be published on 8 December.

Full year figures from Tristel (TSTL) were slightly better than anticipated. The disinfection products supplier increased revenues by 21% to £31.7m and a 27% rise in underlying pre-tax profit to £7.1m. Profit growth will be held back this year by additional investment in the US, where there should be positive news about FDA approval of products.

C4X Discovery (C4XD) has raised £15m at 14p a share. This has nearly doubled the number of shares in issue. The cash will provide a strong financial position for C4X when it is negotiating with potential partners and strategic collaborators. It will also fund the development of potential drugs. that The cash should last for at least 12 months. Indivior has started a phase I clinical trial for C4X_3256 for the treatment of opioid dependence. The trial will last until the end of the year and there will be data in 2021.

Judges Scientific (JDG) is acquiring Korvus Technology, which supplies vapour deposition systems, for an initial £2.64m. This has sparked a small upgrade to the 2021 pre-tax profit forecast taking it to £15.2m.

Gold recovery services company Goldplat (GDP) has increased profit from activities in South Africa and Ghana. The sale of the Kilmapesa mine should be completed by December.

Rare books supplier Scholium (SCH) made a small interim loss. Shapero Rare Books increased its online activity. There will be annual savings of more than £100,000 from moving to new premises.

Orchard Funding (ORCH) has decided to withdraw its application for a banking licence.

Seeing Machines (SEE) has signed a memorandum of understanding with L3 Harris Technologies that could take the company’s computer vision technology into the flight simulator market.

Immunodiagnostic Systems Holdings (IDH) released its normal interim trading statement at 4.35pm on Friday. Covid-19-related sales are still small.

MAIN MARKET

Strong third quarter trading has helped LED lighting and wiring accessories supplier Luceco (LUCE) to increase its guidance for full year operating profit from £23m to between £28m and £30m.

Contango Holdings (CGO) has raised £1.8m at 5p a share and acquired the Garalo gold project in southern Mali for $1m, with $100,000 paid and the rest due in February. The rest of the cash will finance the development of the project so that gold production can start before the end of 2021. Capital costs of $1.2m are expected with further finance of $4m being sought to build up production. Target production is 30,000 ounces per year. The non-independent resource is 320,000 ounces of gold at an average grade of 1.5g/t. Costs should be less than $1,000/ounce.

Aircraft lessor Avation (AVAP) increased revenues by 14% to $135.3m and there was a full year pre-tax profit of $14.6m after a net impairment charge. Mitigating lender agreements have been made with clients.

Edale Capital has sent a requisition notice to InnovaDerma (IDP) in order to force an AGM re-election vote for two existing directors and to propose a new director.

Property investor Town Centre Securities (TOWN) says that it collected 75% of rents in the latest quarter with 10% deferred. Since June, £41.2m has been raised from retail property disposals.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 5 October 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Wine and beer maker Chapel Down (CDGP) made a similar interim loss this year. Wine revenues were one-fifth ahead even though sales were lost in pubs and the company’s own retail site. Online sales offset those declines. Wine stocks have increased by one-third to £11m. Beer and cider sales fell by 38% and gross profit slump by 59%. There was £5.83m in cash at the end of June 2020.  

Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) reported an increase in interim revenues from £109,000 to £140,000. Reversal of impairments and unrealised gains helped to generate a pre-tax profit of £27,000, down from £242,000 because of lower unrealised gains. NAV was £2.52m, including cash of £129,000, at the end of June 2020. Since then, there has been an increase in the value of cryptocurrency and tokens held by the company.

Western Selection (WESP) has sold its stake in AIM-quoted Brand Architekts (BAR) and raised £1.43m at 109.78p a share. The shares were valued at £1.63m in the recent balance sheet. Peter Gyllenhammr increased his stake in Brand Architekts from 6.1% to 10.5%.

KR1 (KR1) reported an interim pre-tax profit of £522,000, including an unrealised gain of £711,000. The NAV was 6.18p a share at the end of June 2020. The latest digital asset investment is $100,000 in the Moonbeam Network project. This is a smart contract platform and KR1 will receive Glimmer tokens that will power Moonbeam’s blockchain.

Incanthera (INC) has announced positive data for a skin sensitisation study for skin cancer technology Sol. This shows it to be non-irritant. ImmuPharma has subscribed £250,000 for shares at 9.5p each. That takes the stake to 15.3%. A total of £350,000 was raised with directors subscribing for the other £100,000.

Housebuilder St Mark Homes (SMAP) has an NAV of 125p a share, compared with a share price of 87.5p (85p/90p). There was a swing from interim profit to loss.

Gunsynd (GUN) has invested £58,000 in gold explorer Angold Resources, subject to its reversal into ZTR Acquisition, which was formerly Oyster Oil and Gas, where Gunsynd already has a stake.

Property investor Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP) has completed the £1.43m acquisition of a property in Scarborough leased to Skipton Building Society. It has exchanged contracts on a Carlisle property costing £1.71m.

NQ Minerals (NQMI) says that processing rates at the Hellyer gold mine have increased to 165 tonnes per hour. The average annualised production rate was 1.23Mtpa in July and August.

Gowin New Energy Group (GWIN) says it is near to appointing a new corporate adviser so that trading can resume in the shares. Management is working towards launching a tea business.

Primorus Investments (PRIM) has invested £1m in construction payments software company Zuuse. Thi is part of a £2.2m fundraising to pay for a transaction expected in the next few weeks. Primorus already owned shares and warrants in Zuuse, so it owns 1.7% of fully diluted share capital. Primorus has sold six million Greatland Gold (GGP) shares at an average price of 14.8p each. That leaves Primorus with 20 million Greatland shares.

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) had an NAV of 51.53p a share at the end of May 2020.

IFA group AFH Financial (AFHP) says that business is recovering and it continues to be profitable and cash generative.

Eurocann International (BUD) is changing its name to DiscovOre (ORE) and the investing strategy broadened to include natural resources as well as cannabis-related activities.

SativaWellness Group Inc (SWEL) has been readmitted to the AQSE growth market following the reverse takeover of the company.

AIM

Avingtrans (AVG) improved its 2019-20 pre-tax profit from £5.3m to £5.9m despite loss contributions from recent acquisitions. One of those acquisitions, Booth Industries, has won a £36m doors contract for HS2. finnCap forecasts a 2020-21 pre-tax profit of £7.3m and Avingtrans is likely to reinstate the dividend.

Demand for the type of data erasure and cyber security services provided by Blancco (BLTG) remains strong, although April and May were tough. In the year to June 2020, revenues improved from £30.5m to £33.4m, helped by acquisitions. Pre-tax profit grew from £3m to £3.9m. Investec expects further profit improvement to £4.3m this year, but it will be second half weighted.

Geospatial services provider 1Spatial (SPA) reported an 8% rise in interim revenues to £11.7m, although the core business revenues made up a greater proportion of the total. There was an interim loss but positive operating cashflow of £1.7m. Net cash was £3.4m. 1Spatial could make a small full year profit.

Grant Thornton has decided to settle litigation with AssetCo (ASTO) rather than appeal the court judgement. This means that AssetCo can access the £28.6m lodged with the court plus the balance of money owed by Grant Thornton. Once this is received, AssetCo will have cash of £55m and net assets of around £52m. The market capitalisation already takes this into account.

The FDA has approved adrenal treatment Alkindi in the US and Diurnal (DNL) should receive a $2.5m milestone payment from distributor Eaton pharmaceuticals when sales start next year. That is on top of licence income. That means that Diurnal’s cash will last longer.

New Trend Lifestyle Group (NTLG) changes its name to Conduity Capital (CCAP) on 5 October. The former activities have been sold and Conduity becomes a shell.

Erris Resources (ERIS) plans to buy a 50% stake in Zinnwald lithium project owner Deutsche Lithium from Bacanora Lithium (BCN) in exchange for shares and a net profit royalty.

Yu Group (YU.) reported a decline in first half revenues from £56.6m to £45.9m due to lower energy consumption by its commercial energy customers. There was a lower loss in the period but reduced working capital requirements meant that there was a significant cash inflow from operating activities. There was £17.9m in the bank at the end of June 2020. Management has invested in marketing in order to win new business.

Intelligent Ultrasound (MED) is launching its first AI software product alongside GE Healthcare. GE has 480,000 ultrasound machines in use and the AI software will be integrated in a range of women’s health ultrasound machines. It could be rolled out across other machines in the future.

M and C Saatchi (SAA) has failed to publish its results and trading in the shares has been suspended. Windar Photonics (WHPO), Clear Leisure (CLP), Malvern International (MLVN), Tri-Star Resources (TSTR) and Hydrodec (HYR) have had share trading suspended for the same reason. The acquisition of Bristol Energy customers will boost scale and help Yu to move towards profitability.

MAIN MARKET

Car finance provider S and U (SUS) generated revenues of £42.8m in the six months to July 2020. That was a 3% decline, but the effects of the Covid-19 lockdown will be greater in the second half. Net receivables were down by 6% to £281.9m, but new loan volumes fell by one-third in the first half. Bad debt provisions were increased by £13.8m to £21.7m and this led pre-tax profit to slump from £17.1m to £6.3m. The property bridging loan business made a lower profit contribution, although the market has subsequently inproved. Even so, a dividend of 22p a share was announced, down from 34p a share.

Guild Esports (GILD) raised £20m at 8p a share. The share price ended the first day of trading at 8.15p.

Mining shell Critical Metals (CRTM) joined the standard list on 29 September. The placing price was 5p and the price was 5.5p at the end of the week.

Toople (TOOP) is on course to achieve £1.6m of annualised cost savings from integrating DMSL. The focus is on margin rather than just growing revenues.  

Ross Group (RGP) reported a reduced loss of £830,000, down from £3.15m, in the first half of 2020. There were no revenues, but the company is trying to build up supply chain operations.

InnovaDerma (IDP) reported full year figures in line with its trading statement in July. The skincare products supplier slumped into loss due to higher marketing costs. There was cash of £1.2m at the end of June 2020.

Newspaper publishing consolidator National World (NWOR) had £4.31m in the bank at the end of June 2020. It is still evaluating acquisition opportunities.

Andrew Hore

Andrew Hore – Quoted Micro 13 July 2020

AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE

Capital for Colleagues (CFCP) has sold its investment in builder’s merchant Merkko Group for double the original investment. The cash consideration for the redemption of the non-voting stake is £400,000. Capital for Colleagues has reinvested £150,000 for a 10% stake in Merkko. The rest of the cash can be reinvested in other companies.

Coinsilium Group Ltd (COIN) is forming a 50/50 Singapore joint venture with blockchain protocol company IOV Labs, which will finance the venture with a loan. IOV owns 6.94% of Coinsilium. A strategic review is commencing a strategic review because there will be a focus on the new joint venture.

In the second quarter, the Hellyer gold mine owned by NQ Minerals (NQMI) produced 1,223 ounces of gold, 229,947 ounces of silver, 8,762 tonnes of lead concentrate and 4,241 tonnes of zinc concentrate. More gold and lead were produced than in the previous quarter, but less silver and zinc. Investment in plant means production should increase in the third quarter. NQ has raised £917,000 at 6.5p a share and this will help to finance the reopening of the Beaconsfield gold mine in Tasmania.

Cannabis-based products supplier Sativa Group (SATI) achieved record trading in June. This includes sales of the company’s hand sanitiser.

Fellow cannabis-focused company Freyherr International Group (FRYR) is changing its year end to 30 June. The next results will be for 18 months to June 2020. Luka Freyer and Tomaz Frelih have stepped down from the board and Ervin Kovac has joined the board and becomes general manager of the Slovenian operations. The Ljubljana office has been closed as part of overhead reductions. The mortgage on the Koper facility has been extended and the interest rate reduced to 5% a year.

World High Life (LIFE) has issued 12.7 million shares at 9p each to pay director and adviser fees and 3.45 million shares at the same price in lieu of debt repayments. A further 7.18 million shares will be issued on conversion of £666,666 of debentures, plus interest of £46,393. CBD-brand Love Hemp has been awarded ISO certification.

Gunsynd (GUN) has raised £469,000 at 0.65p a share. Every three new shares come with a warrant exercisable at 1.3p a share. MiLOC Group (ML.P) is raising £1.1m at 28.5p a share through a placing with BWB International. Recently floated engineering consolidator Vulcan Industries (VULC) has raised an additional £71,000 at 4.5p a share. The original placing was at 3p a share.

At the end of June 2020, EPE Special Opportunities Ltd (ESO) had a NAV of 265.3p a share.

AIM

Management consultancy Elixirr International (ELIX) joined AIM last week. The share price has fallen from the placing level of 217p to 204.5p. The shares are trading on just over 13 times prospective 2020 earnings. The forecast dividend is 2.2p a share.

Seeing Machines (SEE) is set to be a beneficiary of legislation that will go to the Senate in the US that will make driver monitoring systems (DMS) compulsory in cars and trucks sold in the US from 2024. This is part of a more wide-ranging act relating to vehicle safety. There is similar legislation in Europe, although there will be delays in it coming into force due to COVID-19. That should not have too much of a negative effect on Seeing Machines.

Trading at Tracsis (TRCS) was not as badly affected by COVID-19 as it feared. There will be a £10m reduction in full year revenues to around £46m. The traffic and data services business has been hit by the lack of summer events. The rail software business has traded well and there is a pipeline of potential new contracts. There is still £16m in the bank even after paying an initial £12.5m for smart ticketing firm iBlocks.

DBAY Advisors has bought more shares in in Wynnstay Group (WYN) and the stake is 6.12%.

Energy procurement consultancy Inspired Energy (INSE) is raising up to £35m through a placing and two-for-43 open offer at 15p a share. The purchase of the 60% of Ignite Energy that Inspired does not won will cost £11m with contingent consideration of £19m payable in cash and shares. There are plans for further acquisitions.

e-therapeutics (ETX) has raised just over £11m from a share issue at 12p a share, including £750,000 raised via PrimaryBid. This was a 31% discount to the market price. The cash will be used to develop the company’s informatics platform and RNAi technology. Additional staff will be taken on.

Burford Capital (BUR) has filed a registration statement with the SEC ahead of a US listing. There are no plans for a share issue.

Genedrive (GDR) says that full year revenues were 31m and it had cash of £8.2m at the end of June 2020. The molecular diagnostics company says there are 31m in indicative orders for its COVID-19 test.

MAIN MARKET

Viaro Energy has bid 1850p a share for RockRose Energy (RRE) and acceptances have already reached 36.8%. The bid values RockRose at £247.6m. At the beginning of 2016, RockRose floated at 50p a share intending to acquire oil and gas assets.

Telecoms services provider Toople (TOOP) increased full year revenues by 39% to £1.5m and gross margins improved. The cash outflow from operations was £924,000 and there was £1m in cash at the end of March 2020. This year is important because there will be a full contribution from DMSL plus cost savings that could be more than £1m. Chief executive Andy Hollingworth bought 10.6 million shares at 0.0944p each. He owns 38.8 million shares.

Baskerville Capital (BASK) has increased its stake in Oberon Investments, the owner of fund manager MD Barnard, to 10.13% and expects to buy the company by the end of the third quarter. Oberon has acquired Hanson Asset Management, and this takes assets under management to more than £300m. Baskerville may move to the Aquis Stock Exchange after the deal is completed.

Packaging supplier Macfarlane (MACF) says interim revenues were 3% lower following a tough second quarter when revenues fell 7%. Macfarlane is confident that it will be profitable and cash generative this year. The board hopes to restart dividend payments when the outlook is more certain.

InnovaDerma (IDP) says online sales have replaced lost high street sales. Full year revenues were 2% higher at £13.2m, but profit will be lower due to higher online advertising costs and lower margin sales. Margins could recover this year.

Tex Holdings (TXH) says that the FCA has asked questions about its 2019 audited financial statements. Christian Ross has been appointed as finance director.

Andrew Hore

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