The Small Cap Wrap Team will take a Summer break and have the last Small Cap Wrap for the Summer on August 13th and will return on September 10th. Happy Holidays!
The almost immediate U-turn from the Fed on quantitative easing and clear signals from other major central banks of an open-ended intervention is continuing to provide a favourable backdrop for most equity markets. The promise of stable earnings and yield from sectors such as software, personal goods and paper continues to bolster the FTSE 100, which rose another 178 points last week to 6,552. The resource-heavy AIM All-Share index continues to lag behind, rising just 11 points last week to 714. M&A deals and better-than-expected results from some banks have maintained the momentum so far this week, with the news of Chinese Q2 GDP growth slowing to 7.5 per cent coming as no surprise. The rest of this week sees the US releasing Housing Starts/Permits, the Fed Beige Book and Initial Jobless Claims. In the UK, Jobless Claims Change and MPC Minutes will no doubt attract some attention. However, with the central banks showing no tolerance for even a moderate market tumult, any negative reading will continue to be seen as a positive.
ACC Interims; APH Pre-Close Trading Update; ANCR Pre-Close Trading Update; BMY Interim Management Statement; BJU Pre-Close Trading Update; CAU Trading Update; COMS YourForum Agreement; CNS Sale of Corero Business Systems Limited; DDD 3D App on Google Play; EGS £1.2m Contract; FDEV AIM IPO; GTC Trading Update; GOOD Placing and Open Offer; HAL/HALO Trading Update; IDEA Final Results; IKA Full Year Results; LMT Trading Update; MDM Dugbe Project Update; NEW Positive Update from Denmark; NORD Q2 Operating Results; SAR Preclinical Candidate Selected; SCLP SCIB1 8mg Update; SPH Trading Update; SPRP Pre-Close Trading Update; UBC Transaction in Own Shares
Access Intelligence (LON:ACC)
Access Intelligence, the supplier of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions for the full life cycle management of a company's governance, risk and compliance, has reported that revenues were up 6 per cent year on year to £4.2m for the six months ended May 2013. Contracted revenue not yet invoiced rose 25 per cent to £5.5m; recurring revenue of £3m was 72 per cent of total revenue. Loss before taxation decreased to £30,000 compare with £216,000 in the same period last year. Another highlight in the period was the recognition of Due North and AIControlPoint brands by Gartner.
Specialist pharmaceutical company Alliance Pharma announced its pre-close trading update ahead of the announcement of its interim results for the six months, ended 30 June 2013. Management expectations for trading in the first half of the year has been in line, with turnover at £22.8m. Despite the unavailability of ImmuCyst(TM), turnover has steadily increased by four per cent, and ImmuCyst(TM) is currently expected to become available again during the second half of 2014. There was also a reduction in Nu-Seals(TM) sales to £1.6m. Hydromol(TM) sales came in at £2.6m in the first half and antimalarial products acquired in August 2012 contributed £0.8m of sales in the first half, and the stoma care products acquired in October 2012 contributed £2.0m of sales. The first half of 2013 also benefitted from Alliance's toxicology product reaching the peak of its sales cycle as they continue to explore a number of acquisition opportunities, with the outlook for the full year looking promising. The Company's interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2013 are scheduled to be released on 11 September 2013.
Animal Care (LON:ANCR)
Animalcare, a leading supplier of veterinary medicine., provided a pre-close trading statement ahead of the publication of results for the year ended 30 June 2013. Animalcare’s growth is well ahead of the general market, with revenues 11 per cent ahead of the previous twelve months and latest market statistics showing sales of veterinary medicines for companion animals in the UK to be flat. Revenue of Animalcare’s core Licensed Veterinary Medicines group was up by 22 per cent compared with the prior year, whilst the Company reported slightly contrasting revenues for the Companion Animal Identification group which were down in the period as a result of continued competition in the market, however unit sales were slightly ahead of management expectations. Overall the Animal Welfare groups performed well, with revenues up during the period. Three new products were launched in the year and a fourth received its Marketing Authorisation in June, with the launch expected in the first half of the current financial year. Animalcare completed its relocation to new premises in the York area offering a more improved and efficient working environment with much more capacity for potential future growth, without any disruption caused to business. The group continues to focus on its stated strategy of investing in intellectual property protected products and services that will deliver future sustainable growth. Full year results will be announced on Wednesday 25 September 2013.
Bloomsbury Publishing has issued its Interim Management Statement in respect of the period 1 March 2013 to date. The Group is trading in line with management's expectations. In the three months ended 31 May 2013, revenues were up by 19 per cent year on year. Each of its global divisions grew their revenues in the period, with the Adult division standing out with growth of 21 per cent year on year following the early success of And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini, which was released in May. Half of the sales of this title in the period were e-books. Other best-selling titles, which were from the Adult division, were Paul Hollywood’s Bread and How to Bake, which led the continuing strong sales of cookery titles, Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack and in the US The Cooked Seed by Anchee Min. Print title revenues increased by 16 per cent and contributed the majority of the year on year increase in total revenues. In addition, there was also a 31 per cent increase in digital title revenues and a 25 per cent increase in rights and services revenues. The two acquisitions made during the 2012/13 financial year, Fairchild Books and Applied Visual Arts Publishing, together contributed 1 per cent of the 19 per cent year on year increase in Group total revenues in the period. During the period, Bloomsbury published its first Bloomsbury Activity Apps in the Children’s & Educational division. These were developed with Shoo Fly and included in the Guardian’s Top 50 Children’s Apps of 2013. Subscriptions to Drama Online, the digital resource for academics, students and performers, are significantly ahead of expectations. At 30 June 2013 the Group had net cash of £8.5m (30 June 2012: £10.0m). The only other news is that Sarah Thomson has decided to step down as a non-executive director following the expiry of her term.
BrainJuicer Group (LON:BJU)
Innovative, online market researcher BrainJuicer Group released a half year (H1) update on trading. The Company will announce its half year results for the 6 months to 30 June 2013 on 20 September 2013, and enters its closed period on 20 July 2013. After a difficult end to 2012, BrainJuicer looks to be back into growth with sales up some 4 per cent (over a strong comparable period), gross profit were up approximately 6 per cent, and Juicy products continuing to make up most of the Company's revenue (66 per cent of revenue as in 2012). Revenue grew strongly in the Company's two biggest markets, the UK and the US and in one of its newer markets, Brazil, but declined in Continental Europe and China (against a very high comparative period). The strong measures taken by management in the latter part of 2012 meant overheads in H1 were below those in the comparable period. For the year as a whole BrainJuicer continues to project cost growth (before bonus payments) in low single digits. BrainJuicer's financial position and cash generation remain very strong. At the end of June, the Company held a cash balance of £5.5m, a substantial increase on the end December 2012 figure of £3.8m. BrainJuicer has no debt. Accordingly the Board is considering whether a return of some of this cash to shareholders is appropriate and, if so, what would be the most suitable mechanism for affecting such a return. Subject to the usual caveat over limited revenue visibility, the Board considers that the Company is in a position to meet market profit expectations for 2013.
Centaur Media, the business information and events group, has reported that it expects to report interim profits slightly ahead of market expectations following the IMS published on 15 May 2013, with reported revenues up 10 per cent on the prior year, EBITDA margins maintained at 18 per cent and adjusted profits before taxation up 8 per cent. Underlying revenues are, as anticipated in the IMS, expected to be 3 per cent lower than in the previous year. Net debt at 30 June 2013 has reduced as expected to £19.5m, a multiple of approximately 1.5 times anticipated EBITDA. The company continues to make good progress in rebalancing revenues in favour of digital, paid for content and events. Digital and events revenues now account for 34 per cent and 36 per cent, respectively, of total revenues, with both revenue types growing on a reported basis by approximately 27 per cent compared to last year. Paid for content revenues now account for 28 per cent of total revenues compared to 24 per cent last year.
Coms has signed an exclusive Joint Venture agreement with YourForum to assist the national push for Central Government and Local Authorities to provide Broadband services across the country. In addition to broadband services a Smart Monitor software package will be provided in partnership with B.E.E.S. (Bio Eco Energy Solutions ) and made available to all users. As from August 1 2013 Coms Enterprise Limited will focus entirely on these digital inclusion projects and six dedicated members of staff will be transferred to the subsidiary to assist the Company and its partners to implement this initiative. The exclusive joint venture agreement with YourForum, will enable Registered Service Providers, Social Landlords and Local Authorities nationally to offer subsidised or - in some cases, free Broadband connectivity to their tenants and community groups, as facilitated by this unique Agreement, which exists to specifically provide Broadband services for the National push to assist Central Government and Local Authority ambitions of 'digital inclusion' for all across the Country. In addition to the Broadband services provided by COMS, the tenants have the option to participate in an energy saving initiative, a Smart Monitor software package provided in partnership with B.E.E.S. (Energy Cycle).
Corero has announced it has entered into a conditional agreement to sell its entire legal and beneficial holding in Corero Business Systems Limited, CBS, the company’s subsidiary. The sale will be made to Civica UK Limited, amounting to 92 per cent of the issued share capital of CBS. The proceeds of the sale receivable on completion will be approximately £10.9m, net of repayment of bank debt. Further announcements show that Corero would have on a pro-forma basis at 30 June 2013 gross cash of $21.2m and net cash of $15.2m including the net proceeds from the sale. Following the completion of the sale it is intended to appoint Ashley Stephenson, Chief Executive Officer of the Corero Network Security division, to the board of the Company. The sale of CBS, which is still subject to shareholder approval, will result in Corero becoming exclusively focused in the network security market for which its strategy remains unchanged from that set out in the annual report for the year ended 31 December 2012, and the circular to shareholders dated 25 February 2013.
DDD Group, the 3D solutions company, has announced that the Yabazam 3D video streaming app for Android(TM) powered 3D tablets is now available for download from the Google Play Store. Yabazam, DDD's 3D video streaming service, features a wide range of programming, including originally made 3D movies, travel shows, music videos and animated shorts from a growing list of global content providers. The Yabazam 3D app brings these shows to glasses-free 3D tablets running the Android 4.0 (or later) operating system, including the Gadmei E8 8" tablet and the Hampoo 10.1" tablet which already include DDD's TriDef(TM) 2D to 3D conversion apps. Yabazam has more than ninety 3D titles in its library available for viewing with a monthly subscription in the US and on a per-title rental basis in sixteen other countries worldwide. DDD is aggressively growing the range of 3D programs available on Yabazam and releases new 3D titles regularly.
eg Solutions (LON: EGS)
eg solutions, the global back office optimisation software company, announced that it has won a hosted solution contract from a leading UK utility provider for the eg operational intelligence(R) suite (the hosted solution), worth £1.2m over three years and contributing £650,000 to revenue in the current financial year. The hosted solution will form part of a drive by the utility provider to improve productivity and reduce the cost to serve its business customers. It will provide real time operational work management, real time visibility of work-in-progress and consistent management information to support the utility customer's pro-active performance management. The eg operational intelligence(R) software will be implemented across 525 staff in four functions - customer services, billing and industry data, risk and debt management, and service optimisation.
A leading developer of video games with studios in Cambridge, UK and Halifax, Canada, has announced the commencement of dealings in its Ordinary Shares on AIM. The Company has raised £4.0m through a placing and its market capitalisation at the placing price is £39.4m. Founded in 1994 by David Braben, co-author of the seminal Elite game, Frontier has an experienced management and development team that has consistently delivered high quality, innovative and commercially successful games in a continually evolving industry. Frontier’s proprietary “Cobra” technology powers its efficient, cross-platform software development spanning personal computers, tablets, smartphone and videogame consoles across a wide variety of game genres. The admission to AIM follows a pre-IPO fundraising that raised £2.8m. Frontier is debt free, has £7.2m of cash (as at 31 May 2013), and has entered into a revolving credit facility with Barclays Bank plc for £3.0m, so is in a strong position to take its business to the next stage. The share placing price was 127p per share, and closed at 154.5p at the end of first day of dealings up 22 per cent.
GETECH, the oil services business specialising in the provision of exploration data and geological exploration studies, announced a trading update in respect of its year ended 31 July 2013. On the basis of the strong performance of all parts of the business, Getech anticipates that its result for the full year to 31 July 2013 will exceed current market expectations, both in relation to revenue and profits. Getech’s Chief Executive, Raymond Wolfson, commented: "The combination of strong data sales and commitments to Globe has continued to underpin the performance of the Company. Our comprehensive Earth Systems Models, which build on the core of the Globe product, are attracting increasing interest and we are very pleased that demand for our proprietary services continues to strengthen.”
Good Energy Group is a 100 per cent renewable electricity supplier and has announced its intention to raise up to approximately £3.8m. The board announced its proposal to undertake a placing and open offer to raise the £3.8m in aggregate through the issue of new ordinary shares at 125p per share. £1.8m will be placed firm and then it is intended that £2m will be issued through the open offer, assuming full take up of the open offer. The issue price represents a discount of 16.9 per cent to the mid-market closing price on 10 July 2013.
HaloSource gave a trading update and said that it is experiencing a significant positive shift in momentum in line with its strategic plan as negotiated contracts begin to deliver revenue with particular progress in the Water Purification segment. Revenue from orders shipped for the six months ended 30 June 2013 totalled US$5.9m (H1 2012: US$5.8m). The growth in revenues across business segments was approximately 19 per cent and 26 per cent for Environmental Water Remediation and Water Purification respectively, while Recreational Water was down 4 per cent from the same period a year ago. Total orders received for the six months ended 30 June 2013 totalled US$7.2m, equating to a backlog of US$1.3m carried over into the second half of 2013. Aggregating orders shipped and orders received, half-on-half growth for Environmental Water Remediation, Water Purification and Recreational Water was 24 per cent, 117 per cent and 11 per cent, respectively. The Company expects to ship the entire current backlog during July and August 2013.
Ideagen a supplier of Compliance based Information Management (CIM) software announced its unaudited preliminary results for the year ended 30 April 2013. The results represent the Company's fourth consecutive year of revenue and adjusted EPS growth and demonstrate continued strong cash generation from operations. Revenue was up by 63 per cent to £6.51m (2012: £4.00m) of which recurring revenues of £3.1m covered 80 per cent of the fixed cost base. The adjusted PBT was up by 73 per cent to £1.87m (2012: £1.08m) and net cash grew to £6.37m (2012: £1.50m). During the period the acquisition of Plumtree Group Ltd strengthening the company's position in the UK Healthcare sector underpinned by two further NHS contract wins; Western Isles and Forth Valley, under the Scottish NHS Framework agreement. Additionally a strategic reseller partnership was signed with Abbott Laboratories and there was a strong performance within the Aerospace and Defence sector with contract wins at the MOD, BAE Systems, and Northrop Grumman. The Company also announced a new contract with Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust worth approximately £300k for the supply of the Company's proprietary dartEDM document management solution.
Ilika, the advanced cleantech materials discovery company, as expected, reported revenues down 46 per cent to £1m for the year ending April 2013. The company had already warned of delays with a number of potential contracts and the impact of the decision by Energizer to close one of its business units. Notwithstanding the above, the management believes that the company's strong relationships with existing development partners should mean that contracts which were delayed in 2013 will be converted or replaced in 2014. Furthermore, it has generated a significant number of new leads with major companies during the period. The cash position of £1.9m at the end of April 2013, together with an additional £709,000 raised through a share placing in May 2013 and new project wins, is expected to provide sufficient cash to fund requirements for the foreseeable future.
Lombard Medical Technologies (LON: LMT)
Lombard Medical Technologies provided an update for the six months ended 30 June 2013, ahead of the planned announcement of its Interim Results on 29 August 2013. Trading in the first six months has been in line with expectations, delivering total revenue of £2.0m. Aorfix(TM) commercial revenue grew 8 per cent with revenue from the main EU markets growing 6 per cent and revenue from the Rest of World markets growing 9 per cent. In Europe, revenue and demand were strong in Germany and Spain, countering the effect of continued EVAR centre consolidation in the UK. The Company's US launch plans are progressing according to plan. Fifteen new sales representatives and two regional sales managers have been recruited as planned and, in June, the new team attended and successfully completed the in-depth training programme about the use of Aorfix(TM) and the EVAR procedure. The sales team is now focused on increasing US physician knowledge of Aorfix(TM) and organising their participation in physician training programmes, which will commence at various US venues in August. As previously announced on 21 June 2013, FDA approval of the next generation Aorflex(TM) delivery system was received. The Company expects to launch Aorfix(TM) commercially in the US in late Q3 2013 and to hold a coordinated launch event at the VEITH symposium in New York City in November 2013.
MDM Engineering Group Limited is a minerals process and project management company focusing on the mining industry. MDM is pleased to announce that it has received a Letter of Intent to complete the Detailed Feasibility Study, DFS, and Front End Engineering and Design, FEED, for Hummingbird Resources (LON:HUM) Dugbe 1 Project in Liberia. The Dugbe Project is located in the Dugbe Shear Zone, an area of 2,000km in central Liberia lying 40km northeast of the coastal town of Greenville. The Project is highly prospective and a gold project, and is currently HUM's most advanced project with over 61,000m of drilling and a 3.8m ounce gold resource. The FEED will be conducted alongside the DFS in order to expedite the timeframe of mine construction, allowing the company to proceed to an engineering, procurement and construction contract at the end of the DFS. The DFS and Feed are expected to be completed by the end of Q3 2014.
New World Oil and Gas (LON:NEW)
New World Oil and Gas, an oil and gas operating company focussed on Belize and Denmark, has received a positive update to the Competent Person’s Report (CPR) as published in the AIM Admission Document and dated 3 July 2012 from RPS Energy for Licences 1/09 and 2/09 of the Danica Jutland Project located in the highly prospective Jutland on-shore area in South Western Denmark in which New World holds a 25 per cent working interest. New data has identified a number of new smaller prospects rather than one larger reef structure at Jensen that had been previously identified using 2-D seismic. Moreover, RPS has assigned a 90 per cent chance to the presence and effectiveness of trap in the geological structure to hold oil and gas reservoirs.
Nordgold announced its operating results for the second quarter and six months ended June 30, 2013. Highlights of the results show a rise of 82 per cent in lost time injury frequency rates (LTIFR) in Q2 2013 when compared to Q2 2012. Gold production for Q2 2013 was 232.6 koz, indicating a 41 per cent increase on Q2 2012 and a 27 per cent increase on Q1 2013. Nordgold’s newly constructed Bissa mine in Burkina Faso operated ahead of expectations, exceeding the initial full year production guidance for 2013 of up to 100 koz, with production of 112.5 koz in H1 2013. Revenues for Q2 2013 increased by 21 per cent from Q2 2012 to US$319.5m, representing an eight per cent increase from Q1 2013 at $296.8m. Furthermore gold and silver mining licenses for the Gross project were awarded in Q2 2013. A reduction of approximately US$40-50m in the 2013 сapex budget occurred due to lower spending on exploration and at the Gross project, which remains Nordgold’s principal development asset. June 30, 2013 saw net debt increase from US$740.9m at Q1 2013 to approximately US$800m, reflecting the dividend of US$44.6m paid at the end of June. Nordgold reiterates a 2013 full year production forecast of 770 – 850 koz.
Sareum Holdings (LON:SAR)*
Sareum has announced the selection of a preclinical development candidate from its Aurora+FLT3 kinase programme, which targets Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML). As reported in February 2013, recent studies carried out by Sareum sought to differentiate the two most promising programme compounds. Whilst both molecules demonstrate similar efficacy in disease models, the preclinical candidate shows clear benefits in safety models and predicted human exposure, based on a number of in vitro assays. The focus of the programme remains the treatment of AML, but both compounds also demonstrated potent cell-killing activity against other cancers, particularly Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL), Neuroblastoma and Anaplastic Large-Cell Lymphoma. Further investigation of the candidate in additional disease models will be carried out during preclinical development.
Scancell Holdings was informed on 11 July 2013 that one of the three patients recruited into the higher 8mg dose study of SCIB1 will no longer be eligible for evaluation due to delivery of an incomplete dose of SCIB1 following a fault with the electroporation device for that patient. Scancell will recruit a replacement patient as soon as possible in order to complete the initial phase of the 8mg study which is to assess the safety and immune response produced by the 8mg dose prior to expanding the study to include a further ten patients as planned. The initial part of the study is now expected to be completed early next year.
Sinclair IS PHARMA announced a trading update for the twelve months ended 30 June 2013 ahead of its full year results. Revenues for the full year accumulated to £55.4m, which includes a six month contribution by Sculptra(R). Revenue growth for the full year is eight per cent on a reported basis and four per cent on a like-for-like basis with dermatology brands making up eighty per cent of group sales. A five per cent like-for-like decline in growth in the group's five EU Country operations was a result of non-core brands such as Variquel(R) and Cryogesic(R), contrasting a substantial twenty per cent like-for-like advance in international operations. The Group's core five EU Country operations benefited from the successful launch of Sculptra(R) and the continuing growth of Kelo-cote(R). New teams dedicated to aesthetic sales and marketing across Europe have been deployed, resulting in significantly improved brand awareness and retraining of Sculptra(R) practitioners. This has resulted in a marked turnaround with sales now running ahead of the comparable period last year, with Sculptra(R) and Succeev(R) contributing revenues of £4.2m in the period to 30 June 2013. Leading brand Kelo-cote(R) has also benefited from dedicated European aesthetic sales forces showing eight per cent like-for-like growth in Europe over the year. Variquel(R) and Cryogesic(R) have continued to be affected by the combination of generic competition and alternative presentations, with Variquel(R) revenues stabilising in the second half and dropping 25 per cent for the full year. International revenues were again driven by excellent growth both in Asia of 37 per cent like-for-like, and MENA 27 per cent like-for-like. Heavy investment in Atopiclair(R) and Papulex(R) by Menarini Asia has driven sales in eleven Asian countries. Menarini Asia has supplemented the success of Kelo-cote(R) in China and South Korea by launching Kelo-stretch(R) as Glyderm(R) in Indonesia, Thailand, and Taiwan. The collaboration with Hikma Pharmaceuticals to commercialise Flammacerium(R) in eighteen MENA countries further underlines the importance of the region to the group's growth plans. The Group completed the most significant legacy restructuring issue facing the group by successfully exiting all in-house manufacturing in June 2013. Net debt at 30 June 2013 was reduced to £6.8m due to a strong improvement in operating cash flow, from 30 June 2012 which was £9.1m.
Sprue Aegis (LON:SPRP)
Sprue, one of Europe's leading home safety products suppliers, issued a pre-close trading update ahead of its unaudited interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2013, which will be announced on Tuesday 24 September 2013. 2013 has seen Sprue's strongest ever trading start to a year, reflected in sales expected to be reported in the first half of the year of £21.4m, up 28 per cent on the same period last year (H1 2012: £16.7m). Sales have benefitted from significant contracts awarded in the second half of last year, including B&Q, British Gas and Baxi which is part of BDR Thermea, one of Europe's largest boiler manufacturers. In addition, Continental Europe has also seen strong demand largely on the back of higher sales of the Group's award winning ST-620 Thermotek smoke alarm. As expected, the gross margin has declined slightly compared to H1 2012 principally due to changes in the sales mix although the operating profit is expected to be significantly higher than H1 2012, benefiting from operational leverage and tight control over fixed costs. The Company's forward order book has never been so strong and Sprue remains on course to deliver results for the year that are in line with market expectations.
Pursuant to the authority given to the Company by shareholders at its Annual General Meeting on 26 July 2012, UBC announces that on 9 July 2013 it purchased 5,000,000 ordinary shares of 1 penny each in the Company at a price of 2 pence per Ordinary Share. The purchased Ordinary Shares will be held in treasury. Following this transaction, the Company's total issued share capital will remain unchanged with 206,619,545 Ordinary Shares in issue. There will be 7,696,004 shares held in Treasury.
*A corporate client of Hybridan LLP
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The Hybridan Small Cap Wrap is a weekly review of some of the most interesting small cap stories of the past week. Our review will usually be of those companies whose market capitalisations are less than £50m although we may occasionally cover larger companies.