Brave Bison still on the hunt for a profit

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

Brave Bison works creates video content for companies such as Shell and P&G

Social media content creator Brave Bison Group PLC (LON:BBSN) was among Wednesday's top losers, dropping 16.6% to 2.8p on the back of its full-year results.

The AIM company, which makes videos and campaigns for companies such as Shell, Puma and P&G, is still on the hunt for profitability, although things did pick up in 2018.

Revenue rose 19% to £21.2mln, with growth largely driven by Facebook platform advertising, while operating losses narrowed to £0.1mln from £4.9mln a year earlier.

Powerhouse pays boss in shares

PowerHouse Energy Group PLC (LON:PHE) has paid its boss in shares which it has issued at a decent premium to the current share price.

David Ryan has been issued with 1.19mln shares priced at 0.6p apiece – some 30% above yesterday’s closing price.

Investors took the news as a sign of Ryan’s faith that the share price has room to grow, with the stock rising 10.5% to 0.51p come Wednesday afternoon.

Mirriad Advertising drops on restructuring after 'historically flawed' marketing strategy revealed

Mirriad Advertising Plc (LON:MIRI) was the London market’s biggest faller in early afternoon trading, dropping 34% to 6.25p  down 22% as it unveiled restructuring plans as a business review showed its go-to-market strategy "has historically been flawed" as it was spread over too many markets.

To address the encountered issues, Mirriad is aiming to narrow its focus on to core markets, including US, UK, Germany, France and China and plans to engage with clients and media agencies as channel partners.

Investment rise a blot on Cloudcall

Cloud-based software firm Cloudcall PLC (LON:CALL) was also a major casualty, shedding nearly 17% at 86.50p after it reported a wider annual loss due to increased investment despite posting a double-digit rise in revenue.

The group saw its 2018 pre-tax loss increase to £3.7mln, against a £2.6mln loss a year earlier reflecting higher operating costs.

Sybil share sale knocks Avast

FTSE 250-listed Avast Holdings PLC (LON:AVST) lost 5.6% at 280.20p after Sybil Holdings nearly halved its stake in the cybersecurity group.

Swiss bank UBS disclosed that Sybil sold 95.4mln Avast shares – around 10% of the company - at a price of 284p each, netting the investor £271mln, and it now holds a stake of just under 13% in the group. 

FCA digs deeper into Accrol's accounts

Shares in Accrol Holdings PLC (LON:ACRL) have gone down the pan again after the UK’s watchdog widened its investigation into the toilet roll maker.

In January, the Financial Conduct Authority said it was looking into statements Accrol had made to the market between 1 April 2017 and 20 November 2017.

But the FCA is now investigating all communications made since the company listed on AIM in June 2016 up until last September, when its audited full-year results were published.

Shares are down 9.5% to 19p.

Debenhams up as Ashley mulls £61mln offer

Debenhams plc (LON:DEB) is up 50% to 3.4p after Mike Ashley put a figure on his proposed takeover bid for the struggling department store chain.

The billionaire said he was prepared to pay £61.4mln but only if Debenhams' board agreed to meet two conditions.

Firstly, it would have to make him the new chief executive while he also demanded that bosses terminated discussions with lenders to secure a £200mln lifeline.

Ashley, who owns a 30% stake in Debenhams through his Sports Direct International (LON:SPD) business, is desperate to avoid such a refinancing which could all but wipe out existing shareholders.

“Sports Direct would expect the possible offer to be attractive to Debenhams shareholders and other stakeholders as an alternative to Debenhams' current restructuring and refinancing process.”

UKOG raises £3.5mln as it looks for “new opportunities”

UK Oil & Gas PLC (LON:UKOG) has raised £3.5mln which it will use to look for “new opportunities”.

The explorer sold 333.33mln new shares at 1.05p apiece – 12% below yesterday’s closing price.

UKOG recently said that it had enough money to fund its share of the upcoming drill programme at Horse Hill – A.K.A the Gatwick Gusher.

So, it will use this cash injection to assess and acquire new projects, both onshore UK and elsewhere.

Property investor RDI REIT zips higher amid interest from Australian peer

Shares in RDI REIT PLC (LON:RDI) were in demand on Wednesday after the real estate investor confirmed it had received an unsolicited approach from Australian peer Cromwell Property Group.

No price has been mooted yet and Cromwell, which has more than £3bn worth of investments in Europe, said discussions between the parties are ongoing.

Both RDI and REIT issued the usual warning that “there can be no certainty that a formal will be made”, but that didn’t stop investors from speculating.

Shares zipped 15.2% higher to 148.6p, valuing RDI at £565mln.

Proactive news headlines:

OptiBiotix Health PLC (LON:OPTI) appears to be making significant commercial headway with its next-generation sweetener. Investors were told it has reached an outline deal with an unnamed US firm, which has funded pilot production of two batches of the SweetBiotix sweet fibre product.

Touchstone Exploration Inc (LON:TXP, TSE:TXP) chief executive Paul Baay, in 2018’s financial results statement, highlighted a substantial improvement in all key performance indicators during a year which saw his company cement its place as the most active onshore upstream group in Trinidad.

Silence Therapeutics PLC (LON:SLN) has made a clinical trial application for its lead candidate, which is being developed to treat iron overload disorders. SLN124 already has orphan drug designation in Europe, which could shorten its time-line to market while providing the approved product with additional exclusivity.

Echo Energy Plc (LON:ECHO) has provided a production update ahead of 2018’s financial results statement, due at the end of April. The Argentina focussed oil and gas firm said that output from the Fracción C and Fracción D licences amounted to 315,825 barrels oil equivalent, which translates to an average rate of 865 boe per day.

Bushveld Minerals Ltd. (LON:BMN) is to expand vanadium battery development in South Africa to a 1Mw mini-grid that will supply its nearby Vametco mine. The mini-grid will combine 1Mwh of solar photovoltaic generation and 4Mwh energy storage using vanadium redox battery (VRFB) technology and supply power directly into Vametco’s internal distribution network. Big Pic in November.

Accesso Technology PLC (LON:ACSO) has guided towards 2019 organic growth similar to that seen in 2018, in-line with consensus expectations, as it posted strong underlying full-year earnings. The group reported 36.5% growth in adjusted underlying earnings (EBITDA) grew to US$34.8mln for the year ended 31 December 2018, as revenue increased by 15.5% to US$118.7mln.

Frontier IP Group Plc (LON:FIPP) has reported a 27% increase in the value of its portfolio in the first half. The intellectual property investor reported that for the six months to 31 December 2018 the fair value of its portfolio had increased to £11.5mln from £9.1mln in the prior six months. Big Pic in November.

RM Secured Direct Lending PLC (LON:RMDL) has paid out a total dividend of 6.5p for its latest full year, in line with its targets, following an increase in the average yield of its investment portfolio.

Korea gold explorer Bluebird Merchant Ventures Ltd (LON:BMV) expects to finalise the extraction method for ore at the Kochang mine by the end of April. Samples so far indicate the ore is not problematic and does not require complicated or expensive extraction techniques, said Bluebird, which will allow for lower cost processing options.

Avation PLC (LON:AVAP) has acquired and leased a third new Airbus A220-300 aircraft to airBaltic, the Latvian hybrid carrier. The commercial passenger aircraft leasing company said the 12-year lease commenced on 26 March 2019.

Woodbois Limited (LON:WBI), formerly known as Obtala, has raised around £960,000 from its institutional investor, Lombard Odier, as it also amended an agreement relating to the sale of its Tanzanian agricultural business. The forestry and timber firm said Lombard had subscribed for 16mln new shares at a price of 6p each, an 12% discount to its close price on Tuesday, taking its stake in Woodbois to 25.01%.

Oracle Power PLC (LON:ORCP) has informed investors of a change to the memorandum of understanding concerning the group’s power plant development project in the Sindh Province of Pakistan. A new 2019 agreement changes the composition of equity holdings in the project, though Oracle’s stake remains mostly intact (it will now have 12% rather than 12.1%).

Active Energy PLC (LON:AEG) said it has completed its acquisition of the industrial site in Lumberton, North Carolina, which is to become its CoalSwitch base, with all outstanding conditions now satisfied. Active Energy announced the US$3.3mln (£2.5mln) acquisition of Lumberton from vendor Alamac on 4 March, with the deal to be funded by a US$3.41mln convertible loan note.

Base Resources Limited (LON:BSE) (ASX:BSE) has appointed Berenberg as its joint broker, with immediate effect, to work alongside its existing joint broker, Numis Securities, as well as the company’s nominated adviser, RFC Ambrian.

PowerHouse Energy Group PLC (LON:PHE) said it has issued 26,145,552 ordinary shares in the company to various service providers for the settlement of fees, of which 21,838,750 are being issued at 0.5p and 4,306,802 are being issued at 0.5015p. In addition, the company said, it is issuing 1,808,333 ordinary shares in lieu of fees to its chief executive officer, David Ryan at a price of 0.6p per share, and 1,185,000 ordinary shares to its chief financial officer, Christopher Vanezis at 0.5p each.


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