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Tiziana booms as executive chairman tightens grip on the drug developer

Some of the main news-driven risers and fallers in London on Monday …

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Cerrone now owns 50.56% of the company

Tiziana Life Sciences PLC (LON:TILS) shares surged on Monday afternoon as  the cancer drug developer’s executive chairman put his money where his mouth is.

Gabriele Cerrone dipped into his own pocket and snapped up another £10,000 worth of Tiziana’s stock. After today’s relatively small purchase, Cerrone holds 50.56% of the shares.

Investors tend to like it when directors buy shares as it is often taken as a sign of confidence in the business’ prospects.

Shares rose 28.1% to 103.8p.

Silence Therapeutics chair steps down

Silence Therapeutics PLC (LON:SLN) chair Annalisa Jenkins is stepping down with immediate effect, the drug development company announced on Monday.

Andy Richards, CBE, a non-executive director of the group since September 2016, has been appointed interim non-executive chair to ensure a smooth transition.

"On behalf of the company and my colleagues on the board, we thank Annalisa Jenkins for her energetic and dedicated service to Silence Therapeutics during the past year,” said David Horn Salmon, who was appointed chief executive in July.

“In a short period of time, Annalisa has been responsible for upgrading our R&D operations and reshaping the company strategy. We wish her well with her portfolio of Board and non-Board roles and her future endeavours.”

A search his underway for Jenkins’ successor, but investors seemed to like the idea of change, with shares jumping 13.3% to 130.3p.

Housebuilders stumble as latest Rightmove data points to slowing UK housing market

UK housebuilders have struggled so far today after more data showed a slowing housing market as sellers launched a “late summer sale”.

According to the Rightmove house price index, the average asking price of a newly-listed house fell 2.3% on a seasonal basis in August compared with a month earlier. That’s equivalent to roughly a £7,218 fall in prices month-on-month.

On an annual basis, prices were up 1.1%, slower than the 1.4% recorded in July.

The main drags on the index were the subdued London market, and the commuter belt of the South East. Excluding those two regions, the index fell just 1.5%.

Persimmon PLC (LON:PSN) shares are down 1.6% to 2,423p, Berkeley Group PLC (LON:BKG) has dropped 1.2% to 3,694p, while rival Taylor Wimpey PLC (LON:TW.) is 1.1% lower at 169p.

Investment giant Invesco trims stake in Hvivo

Hvivo PLC (LON:HVO) headed lower in early deals on Monday after one of the world’s largest investment management companies cut its stake in the AIM-quoted drug developer.

US-based Invesco trimmed its holding from 27.2% to 26.9%, although it retains its position as Hvivo’s largest shareholder.

It was only a small change, but it still knocked 4.5% off the firm’s share price, which fell to 61.6p.

Andalas Energy reckons there could be 399bn cubic feet of recoverable gas at Badger

Andalas Energy PLC (LON:ADL) flowed higher on Monday morning after telling investors there could be as much as 399bn cubic feet of recoverable gas at its Badger prospect in the southern North Sea.

The explorer added that it also believes there could be a further 3.9mln barrels of natural gas liquids at Badger.

It’s important to remember that this is just a prospective resource estimate and based only on 3D seismic data, so it’s still early stage and there are still a lot of unknowns.

The next step will be to drill down to see if it can verify those assumptions, and it said today a proposed well location has been identified. Shares added 30% to 1.1p.

Pathfinder to take new route

Pathfinder Minerals PLC (LON:PFP) was another stock winding its way higher after its chief executive stepped down.

Nick Trew is the man departing and he will be replaced by Scott Richardson Brown, who was previously a non-executive director at the company.

Mulberry investors pack their bags

Fancy handbags maker Mulberry Group PLC (LON:MUL) was Monday’s biggest loser though, warning that its full-year numbers could be “materially reduced” if the current “challenging” market conditions in the UK persist.

It added that it would take a £3mln hit in its half-year report as a result of the collapse of House of Fraser, in which it operates 21 concession stores. Shares fell by a quarter to 427p.

Proactive news headlines

Kromek Group PLC (LON:KMK) said its medical division has won two contracts worth a combined US$1mln. The radiation detection technology specialist said an equipment manufacturing customer has placed a US$700,000 order for Kromek’s cadmium zinc telluride (CZT) detectors to be used in nuclear medicine.

AdEPT Telecom PLC (LON:ADT) has acquired fellow information technology services provider Shift F7, in a deal worth up to £7.9mln.

Keywords Studios PLC (LON:KWS) has “substantially” expanded its engineering services line through the acquisition of Studio Gobo Ltd and Electric Square Ltd.

Kalahari Metals LTD, in which Metal Tiger PLC (LON:MTR) has a significant stake, is to undertake due diligence on five potential new exploration licenses in Botswana. Work on two existing licenses continues, with the aim of identifying a resource analagous to the sizeable T3 deposit now being developed by MOD Resources (ASX:MOD).

Arc Minerals Limited (LON:ARCM) posted a profit in its latest full year as numbers benefited from its shift of emphasis to Africa. The junior is now concentrating all its attention on the Zamsort copper and Misisi gold deposits in Zambia and the DRC respectively.

Tower Resources PLC (LON:TRP) told investors that an expanded reserves report for the Thali project, in Cameroon, is expected next month. The explorer, in a stock market statement, noted that earlier this month, it received its certificate of environmental compliance for the project, and, it anticipates formal confirmation of an extension to the first licence period in September also.

Silence Therapeutics PLC (LON:SLN) chair Annalisa Jenkins is stepping down with immediate effect, the drug development company announced on Monday.

Andy Richards, CBE, a non-executive director of the group since September 2016, has been appointed interim non-executive chair to ensure a smooth transition.

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