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AQUIS STOCK EXCHANGE
Brewer Shepherd Neame (SHEP) reported a 8% increase in interim revenue to £85.3m. Pre-tax profit recovered from £3m to £3.5m despite inflationary pressures. The interim dividend has been raised by 14% to 4p a share. Like-for-like own beer volume was 12.7% ahead, although total volumes were slightly lower. There was a small operating loss in this division. Like-for-like retail sales were 11.9% ahead even though food sales fell. Tenanted income was 7% higher. Retail sales and tenanted income continued to grow in the 12 weeks to 18 March, but own beer volumes have declined. Following the results, director George Barnes acquired 6,000 shares at 605p each.
British Honey Corporation (BHC) has been unable to secure additional funding and FRP Advisory has been appointed as administrator. Trading in the shares has been suspended.
Marula Mining (MARU) has appointed additional advisers for the proposed move to AIM. This includes MSA Group as technical consultant, and it will complete a competent persons report on the portfolio of battery metals projects in Africa.
NFT Investment (NFT) plans to return cash to shareholders, but not until the Bitcoin halving that is likely to take place in April 2024. Every four years the rate of Bitcoin creation halves and that tends to spark an increase in the price. This cash return would be via a tender offer to help to reduce the discount to NAV. The liquid crypto portfolio is currently worth 2.87p a share and NAV is 3.61p a share. Quarterly updates on holdings are promised.
Oscillate (MUSH) is no longer going to acquire Hi55 Ventures. There are plans to end the suspension of trading in the shares.
Macaulay Capital (MCAP) was involved in a £1.55m investment in engineering business HC 1340 Ltd in return for a 52.7% and £1.5m in loan notes redeemable in March 2029. Macaulay Capital invested £700,000, compared with the normal investment level of £200,000, and two directors also invested. There are plans to sell on £500,000 of the investment at cost.
Crypto app company Tap Global Group (TAP) says registered users were near to 140,000 by the end of February and revenues are growing.
Adverse economic conditions meant that the NAV of EPE Special Opportunities (EO.P) fell from 456p a share to 328p a share in the 12 months to January 2023. This included £24.5m in cash after share buy backs. There are loan notes of £4m and £20.7m in zero dividend preference shares. New investments are being reviewed.
Lift Global Ventures (LFT) generated interim revenues of £150,000 and the loss was £220,000 after directors fees of £146,000. There was £1.2m in the bank and £750,000 of this was invested in Trans-Africa Energy.
Looking Glass Labs (NFTX) is selling GenZeroes Productions Inc for a promissory note for C$800,000 plus a 50% royalty on net proceeds generated by the assets. Looking Glass Labs reported a slump in interim revenues.
Fenikso Ltd (FNK), formerly Lekoil, has received a further $692,000 as partial repayment of a $51.9m loan.
Inqo Investments Ltd (INQO) has raised $1m via a convertible loan note. Up until 28 February 2024 the conversion price is a 5% discount to the market price and then a 10% discount up until 28 February 2025.
Mike Cuthbert has been appointed chairman of Oberon Investments (OBE), having previously worked at Zeus and Canaccord Genuity. Former Sanlam chief investment officer Phil Smeaton has been appointed head of investments. Fuel additives company SulNOx Group (SNOX) chief executive Ben Richardson is stepping down from the board. He is staying with the business and will focus on sales and business development. Jassem Osseiran has stepped down from the board of Semper Fortis Esports (SEMP). Lord Howard and David Young have left the board of Watchstone Group (WTG), which leaves two directors.
SuperSeed Capital Ltd (WWW) managing director Mads Jensen acquired 14,491 shares at an average price of 82p.
Zinnwald Lithium (ZNWD) rose on the back of its successful share issue at a premium to the previous market price. A total of £18.75m was raised at 10.41p a share and the share price remains lower than that. German critical metals company Advanced Metallurgical Group subscribed for a 25.1% stake. The cash will fund the definitive feasibility study of the Zinnwald lithium project in Saxony, which can supply battery markets. It is currently estimated to have a NPV8 of $1.6bn and a payback period of 3.3 years. The output could reach 17,000t/year LiOH. AMG has Europe’s first lithium hydroxide refinery at Bitterfield-Wolfen.
Cloud video editing technology developer Blackbird (BIRD) reported annual revenues increased by 38% to £2.85m. There are £3.43m of contracted revenues with £1.6m to be recognised this year. There was still £10m in the bank at the end of 2022. This means that there are no concerns about Blackbird having to raise additional cash. As long as there is no significant increase in cash outflow the cash will last for many years. The new self-service SaaS platform aimed at creators will be launched in the fourth quarter of 2022. There will be four tiers starting at $12/month. There were a total of 126,427 shares bought by chief operating and financial officer Stephen White in two tranches at 7.85p and 8p. That takes his stake to 0.15%.
Capital equipment supplier Mpac Group (MPAC) reported a fall in pre-tax profit from £8.6m to £3.5m, but this was expected. There are signs that trading is recovering and the order book of £67.2m covers nearly two-thirds of forecast revenues for 2023. Pre-tax profit could recover to £7m this year. Adam Holland will succeed Tony Steels as chief executive.
Caledonia Mining Corporation (CMCL) has raised £8.7m at 1115p a share with £2.4m more to come from a placing in Zimbabwe. The cash will be spent on accelerating work on three new gold projects in Zimbabwe. Last year, net cash generated from operating activities was $42.6m, but cash fell to $1.5m at the end of 2022 because of significant capital investment. The total dividend was increased from 50 cents a share to 56 cents a share.
Waste-to-energy technology developer and operator Eqtec (EQT) is raising £3.5m at 0.22p, with potential for a further £550,000 to be added to the total. The cash will be used on market development centres (MDC), which are used to demonstrate the company’s technology. The first MDC should open in Croatia later this year. This is part of the process to move to a licensing model. There will also be some spending on developing sustainable aviation fuel.
Financial support services provider Fintel (FNTL) improved full year revenues from £63.9m to £66.5m with the greatest growth coming in the fintech part of the business. This year has started strongly.
Safestyle UK (SFE) reported 2022 results showing a £4.4m underlying loss. The replacement windows company could return to profit this year, but there are still underlying economic concerns, high interest rates and pressure on consumer spending. This year’s pre-tax profit forecast has been cut from £3.6m to £2m.
Homeware and gifts company Portmeirion (PMP) is showing its resilience given the dependence on consumer spending. Last year, pre-tax profit improved from £7.2m to £8m. The dividend has been raised from 13p a share to 15.5p a share – three times covered by earnings - and the increase will continue to be in double digits. Shipping costs are falling and production efficiency improving, which should help to improve margins. This year pre-tax profit should exceed £9m with potential to do even better.
In The Style (ITS) shareholders voted in favour of the sale of its online retail business for £1.2m, but not enough voted for the cancellation of AIM quotation. There was 58.9% in favour of the AIM cancellation, but it required 75%. The company will change its name to Itsum and become a cash shell. However, there are still plans to wind up the company and shareholders will be distributed less than £500,000 after expenses.
Oil and gas producer Egdon Resources (EDR) increased first half production by 27% to 46,465 barrels of oil equivalent per day, while interim revenues were 47% higher at £3.73m. There was £5.52m in the bank. The full interim figures will be published on 24 April.
Galileo Resources (GLR) has received approval from South African authorities for the acquisition of Glenover Phosphate. Soil sampling at Bulawayo has highlighted a 1.5km gold anomaly. Drilling will be deferred until more sampling is completed. New discoveries have been made in the Kamativi licence area.
Africa-focused agriculture company Agriterra (LON: AGTA) raised £250,000 at 1p a share. Magister Investments is converting £206,000 of debt at the same price. The cash will be spent on purchasing cattle and working capital for operations.
Shipbroker Braemar (BMS) had a strong year to February 2023 with revenues of at least £150m and operating profit doubled to £20m – helped by currency movements. Net cash was £6.9m at the end of February 2023 and the total dividend will be higher than expected at 12p a share.
In 2022, finance digitalisation and subscription management software provider Aptitude Software (APTD) increased revenues from £59.3m to £74.4m, but pre-tax profit declined from £9.7m to £7m due to increasing investment. Recurring revenues were £50.5m. Profit should recover this year as margins are rebuilt.
Hydrogen Utopia International (HUI) has agreed payment and terms with AIM-quoted Powerhouse Energy (PHE) for a 50/50 joint venture to develop a waste-to-heat project in Longford, Ireland. Powerhouse Energy will pay £400,000.
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