Aim adviser and metals trader Ambrian Capital says that its broking business returned to profit in the second half.
Broker Ambrian Partners has generated second half revenues more than double those achieved in the first half. Fundraisings for Nautical Petroleum and Archipelago Resources have helped as has cutting costs. Ambrian Partners had built up its cost base by taking on analysts to help boost secondary trading. The benefits did not come through and the experiment was reversed with Ambrian focusing on its core resources and cleantech sectors.
Sales of physical metals grew from 110,892 tonnes in the first half to around 130,000 tonnes in the second half. Ambrian says that it is withdrawing from its LME futures and options brokerage operations in the next few months in order to concentrate on trading physical metals and energy products. The LME brokerage business is expected to generate a profit of £250,000 in 2010. There will be closure costs but it will free up around £5m of working capital.
Ambrianís investment portfolio has benefited from the rising gold price. There was also a positive contribution from the biofuels business established in August.
Ambrian expects to make a profit before share-based payments of around £1.8m in 2010 with nearly all of that coming in the second half.
Ambrian expects its net asset value to be steady at 32.4p a share at the end of 2010. At 25.75p a share, up 2p, Ambrian is valued at £27.5m. The shares are trading at a discount of around 20% to NAV.
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