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MediaZest boss doubles his stake in the audio-visual group

Some of the main news-driven risers and fallers in London on Wednesday ...
share certificate
Investors always like to see directors putting their money where their mouths are

Mediazest Plc (LON:MDZ) got a much needed boost after its chief executive doubled his stake in the company.

The audio-visual group reported last week that annual losses widened significant to £113,000 from just £2,000 a year earlier as a result of delays to three of its “substantial projects”.

On the back of the subsequent share price fall, Geoff Robertson has spent £5,000 to snap up 3.62mln shares, taking his total holding to 6.68mln, or 0.52%.

The market tends to take it as a sign of confidence when directors put their own money into their own companies. Shares rose 10.3% to 0.15p.

‘Beast from the East’ didn’t hit window maker Epwin Group as hard as expected

Windows and door maker Epwin Group PLC (LON:EPWN) took a hit from the ‘Beast from the East’, although the impact wasn’t as bad as it had initially feared.

The AIM-quoted company, which also lost its two biggest customers at the end of last year, reported first half revenue of £142.4mln (H1 17: £149.9mln).

That was “better than anticipated” though, and the board remains confident of hitting full-year profit forecasts. Shares jumped 7% to 75.7p.

Bullish update from Collagen Solutions

Collagen Solutions is also in the black today, climbing almost 10% to 4.1p on the back of a bullish AGM statement.

Chief executive Jamal Rushdy told investors that the regenerative med-tach group is on track to hit its financial and operational targets this year.

He added that Collagen’s ChondroMimetic implant, used as a bone and cartilage scaffold for the repair of cartilage defects in the knee, is on course to receive a CE Mark as well as its first in-man surgery in the current financial year, while the restructuring in New Zealand is coming along well, too.

Laura Ashley looking pretty despite 98% plunge in profits

Homeware retailer Laura Ashley Holdings PLC (LON:ALY) is looking pretty this morning, despite reporting a whopping 98% fall in annual profits.

Pre-tax profits plunged to £0.1mln in the year to June 20 from £6.3mln last year, largely due to a £4.7mln impairment on the value of its Singapore property.

But the shares are up by more than a fifth to 5.3p, and it seems like it could actually be due to the Singapore property.

Alongside the results, Laura Ashley revealed it had sold the property for £30.3mln, not far off from what it had paid for back in 2015. Investors on social media seemed relieved just to have escaped the “ludicrous investment” without too much damage.

Hardide dips as it receives funding to complete two “major” aerospace projects

Surface coating specialist Hardide PLC (LON:HDD) has won funding from the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme to carry out two “major” projects.

Hardide, which is the lead partner on both of the 18-month projects, will use the cash to develop its coating technology for use on aircraft components.

“These grant awards were made after a rigorous application process and we will be working closely on the projects with our end-user customers,” said chief executive Philip Kirkham.

“Both projects have the potential to expand significantly Hardide's aerospace business, widening the range of aircraft components and substrate materials suitable for our coating technology.” Shares soared 12.3% to 2p.

EVR dips on wider first-half loss

EVR Holdings PLC (LON:EVRH) was the top faller in London, dipping 11.3% to 6.9p as investors reacted to this morning’s interim results.

Losses widened to £4.4mln in the six months ended June 30, while revenues totalled just shy of £7,000.

That doesn’t sound like a lot, and it isn’t – about £115 per day since the MelodyVR platform was launched at the beginning of May.

A quick look on the bulleting boards will show you some retail investors weren’t best pleased with the cash burn and lack of sales, but context is always important.

EVR’s main focus has been building for future growth, by developing its technology and signing deals with stadia – including the o2 which it announced today – as well as getting all the major music labels on board.

In terms of sales, there has been next to no promotion of the MelodyVR platform so far, although driving awareness is a key target over the next year. Facebook only released its Oculus Go VR headset in May as well, so that has contributed to the sluggish sales so far.

Edenville Energy bags new coal supply contract

Going the other way is, Edenville Energy PLC (LON:EDL) which has shot up 16% to 0.33p after the African coal group landed a supply contract.

A new two-year contract sees Edenville supply 4,000 tonnes of coal per month. The contract’s pricing is based on calorific content, and, the company said the coal is expected to have a gross calorific value greater than 4,800 kCal/kg.

Proactive news headlines 

Kodal Minerals PLC (LON:KOD) said high-grade mineralisation has been returned for the Sogola-Baoule prospect in Mali where mineralisation remains open along strike.

BigDish PLC (LON:DISH) said it has identified yield management, a form of dynamic pricing structure, as an opportunity to expand business in its Asian markets. 

Regenerative medicines group Collagen Solutions PLC (LON:COS) is on track to hit its financial and operational targets this year, chief executive Jamal Rushdy will say at today’s annual general meeting. 

Strategic Minerals PLC (LON:SML) has reported encouraging first results from drilling at its Redmoor project in Cornwall. Tungsten was intersected in the two holes completed so far, which were drilled to depths of up to 730m. 

Genedrive PLC (LON:GDR) has appointed Chris Yates, the chief executive and co-founder of diagnostics group Abingdon Health, as non-executive director with immediate effect.

Chagala Group Limited (LON:CGLO) said its full year dividend of US$0.025 per share will be paid on or around September 17. 

appScatter Group PLC (LON:APPS) has raised £1mln before costs via a share placing of more than 1.4 million ordinary shares. 


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