Shares in Domino’s Pizza Group PLC (LON:DOM) were looking tastier in late-afternoon after news the UK arm of the international pizza chain had brought in a major shareholder to help recruit a new chairman sent the stock 4.8% higher to 282.1p.
The company has appointed Usman Nabi, the founder of LA-based investment group Browning West which holds a 6.5% stake in the firm, as a non-executive director who will site on its nomination committee.
Domino’s said it is prioritising the appointment of a new chairman ahead of bringing in a new chief executive.
In the six months to 30 September, the FTSE 100 company generated £24mln of profit before tax, swinging from a £5.5mln loss in the same period last year.
This was driven by revenue growth of 16.5% to £391.9mln on the back of “increasing use of technology” by industrial customers, said chief executive officer Craig Hayman, pointing to the continued advance of “mega trends” such as the internet of things and artificial intelligence.
The electronic products distributor also reported gross margin growth in the period of 43.7%, lower than last year’s 44.4%, due to weaker performance in the connectors and electromechanical products as well as the launch of OKdo. The latter, launched in April, is an Internet of things brand that is expected to register strong growth in the second half, although it will be offset by “purchasing and pricing” actions, resulting in a “more modest” second-half margin decline.
2.00pm: OnTheMarket on the up as it inks listing deal with Persimmon
Under the new deal, Persimmon will list all of its residential developments on OTM’s website, a move the company says will broaden its advertiser base and increase its relevance with active housebuyers.
The agreement also raises the number of listing developments on OTM’s web portal to 733.
The telecoms giant reported revenue of €21.9bn for the six months to 30 September, up 0.4% as organic service revenue returned to growth of 0.7% in the second quarter after a decline of 0.2% in the first.
Revenues were boosted by two months’ contribution from the €18.4bn acquisition of European cable businesses from Liberty Global, partly offset by the disposal of the New Zealand business.
However, Vodafone also reported a loss before tax of €1.9bn, reflecting a ruling from the Supreme Court in India against the local telecoms industry in a dispute over the calculation of license and other regulatory fees, making the Vodafone Idea joint venture liable for “very substantial demands”.
In the fallers, J20 maker Britvic dipped 0.3% to 952p on news that it was in talks with Dutch group Refresco, the world’s largest independent bottler, over the potential sale of facilities located in France.
The FTSE 250 firm would give up three juice manufacturing sites, its related private label juice business and the Fruité brand while retaining ownership of the Pressade and Fruit Shoot brands, which Refresco would produce as part of the agreement.
The transaction, scheduled to complete in spring 2020, is expected to result in a “modest impact” on adjusted underlying earnings.
11.00am: Lamprell pulls out of its share price swoon after digital transformation hook-up
Lamprell and Injazat, a company wholly-owned by Abu Dhabi’s sovereign investment vehicle, Mubadala Investment, have provisionally agreed to work together “to create and market innovative digital solutions focused on the oil and gas and renewables markets”.
Injazat, a specialist in digital transformation – whatever that is – and has a broad services portfolio covering the infrastructure, application, cyber defence and cloud domains.
10.30am: Out-of-this-world level of enthusiasm for Alien Metals
Shares in Alien, which holds an exclusive option to acquire a 51% interest in the projects, rose 27% to 0.19p and were the best performers in London.
Independent laboratory analysis of 17 rock chip samples taken from both tenements has highlighted the potential high grade of the ore, with stand-out numbers including 64.2% iron from the Sirius Extension prospect, 63.9% from the Kalgan prospect, 60.3% from the BHP 20 prospect and 65.4% from the BHP 19 prospect.
9.30am: Gear4Music hits bum note but Premier Foods gets an exceedingly good reception
Gear4Music (Holdings) PLC (LON:G4M) hit a bum note with its interim results, sending the shares 8.3% lower to 222.5p.
The online retailer of musical instruments and music equipment said, “having appropriately reconfigured the business, we now expect gross margins to be higher and revenues to be lower than previous guidance”.
The six months to the end of September saw the order conversion rate fall to 3.02% from 3.22% the year before while the average order value fell to £120.05 from £127.48 the year before.
Investors were tucking into the shares of Premier Foods PLC (LON:PFD) after its half-year report; the shares were up 8% at 36p.
Half-year revenue was up 2.4% year-on-year, with sales growth quickening to 3.6% in the second quarter.
The Mr Kipling cakes maker moved back into the black with an exceedingly good profit of £15.0mln versus a £2.2mln loss the year before.
Proactive news headlines:
Alien Metals Ltd (LON:UFO) has confirmed the potential for direct shipping of iron ore from the Hancock Ranges and Brockman projects in western Australia over which it holds an exclusive option to acquire a 51% interest. Independent laboratory analysis of 17 rock chip samples taken from both tenements has highlighted the potential high grade of the ore, with stand-out numbers including 64.2% iron from the Sirius Extension prospect, 63.9% from the Kalgan prospect, 60.3% from the BHP 20 prospect and 65.4% from the BHP 19 prospect.
SDX Energy PLC (LON:SDX) has told investors that production has now officially begun at the South Disouq gas field in Egypt. The company owns a 55% stake in the South Disouq which has been a key focus for investors and management alike. Gas has been flowing at South Disouq since 7 November, the company confirmed in a statement, and all four of the field’s wells have now been hooked up to the central processing facility. In a separate statement, the company announced that Mark Reid has been appointed as the company’s permanent chief executive following on from his interim appointment back in May.
BigDish PLC (LON:DISH) has overhauled its management team and strategy to achieve critical mass. Tom Sumner has been appointed as chief executive of the restaurant booking app firm, while current CEO Sanj Naha will in future focus on electronic point of sale and third-party restaurant technology platforms. BigDish is also undertaking a major overhaul of its restaurant acquisition strategy with seven of its nine territory managers to leave and a new telesales operation to come onstream in Manchester from December.
Telit Communications PLC (LON:TCM) has said profits for the first three quarters of its current year have been “slightly ahead” of its expectations. In a trading update for the nine months to 30 September, the Internet of Things (IoT) specialist said revenues for the period were 7.8% higher year-on-year at US$274.5mln.
Tower Resources PLC (LON:TRP), the AIM listed oil and gas company with its focus on Africa, said that further to its announcement on 15 October 2019 regarding the completion of a placing and subscription for £1.5mln, the issue of 349,643,617 new ordinary shares has now been completed, with the Second Tranche comprising 338,076,923 placing shares and 11,566,694 commission and fee shares.
Asiamet Resources Limited (LON:ARS) said that it received notification yesterday that Dominic Heaton, a non-executive director of the company, purchased 236,550 common shares in the company on market at an average price of 2.9p each on 7 November 2019. Following these transactions, the group added, Heaton's interest in the company is 1,895,643 common shares, which represents approximately 0.17% of the issued common share capital.
Columbus Energy Resources PLC (LON:CERP) has announced an extension of the Incremental Production Service Contract (IPSC) for the Inniss Trinity field in Trinidad. The extension replaces prior obligations and allows for the implementation of a pilot project for CO₂ injection based enhanced oil recovery. In effect, the EOR venture replaces prior obligations requiring the drilling of seven new production wells. It also means that the IPSC runs until December 2021, extended from a previously envisaged end date of January 2020.
Alba Mineral Resources PLC (LON:ALBA) executive chairman George Frangeskides declared himself “pleased” as horizontal drilling was completed successfully in the new Horse Hill well. A total of 2,500 feet was successfully drilled horizontally wholly within the targeting ‘sweet spot’ of the conventional Portland oil reservoir. It was decided, according to Alba, that there was little technical or economic merit in completed the maximum allowed horizontal section, of 3,000 feet, because the programme achieved a good, clean horizontal trajectory.
Polarean Imaging PLC (LON:POLX) has installed its latest research unit at a hospital in Vancouver, Canada. The order for the 9820 Xenon Polariser system was from the University of British Columbia, but the unit will be installed at the BC Children's Hospital, a leading paediatric research and teaching centre.
Anglo African Oil & Gas PLC (LON:AAOG) has signed a rig agreement ahead of a side-track well planned for its Tilapia Field in the Republic of Congo. It has an ‘option’ on specialised equipment supplied by Société de Forage Pétroliers (SFP) that is currently being used by a “super-major” to drill its 56%-owned TLP-103C-ST prospect and four others. Work will take place in either the first or second quarter of next year, depending on SFP’s work commitments – later than expected.
Scotgold Resources Ltd (LON:SGZ) closed out the year to 30 June 2019 with just under US$4mln cash in the bank. The picture is likely to have been transformed in the months subsequent, however, as the company moves full steam ahead to bring the Cononish mine in Scotland into production within a matter of months.
AdEPT Technology Group PLC (LON:ADT) continues to trade in line with expectations with organic revenue growth augmented by contributions from acquisitions. The acquisitive information technology services provider saw revenue rise by 26% to £30.8mln in the six months to the end of September from £24.4mln in the same period of last year.
Amur Minerals Corporation (LON:AMC) has completed the hydrological assessment for its Kun-Manie nickel copper sulphide project. The assessment has been approved by the necessary Russian Federation agencies, an important component in completing the TEO, the local equivalent of a feasibility study. The hydrological assessment has confirmed the presence of substantial groundwater reserves located along the Maly Kurumkon and Bolshoy Kurumkon watersheds, sufficient to support the Kun-Manie proposed mining operation.
Bluejay Mining PLC (LON:JAY) has appointed Joshua Hughes as Greenland Exploration Manager. Hughes will manage multiple interrelated exploration programmes in Greenland, as Bluejay moves to advance its two large scale base metal projects, Disko-Nuussuaq and Kangerluarsuk.
ADM Energy Plc (LON:ADME) has completed a second round of funding worth £129,000 through a subscription at 7p per share by Mrs Olanike Olakunmi Anani. Anani is already is a shareholder in the Nigerian oil group and her stake in the business rises to 6% following this latest subscription.
Ceres Power Holdings PLC (LON:CWR), a global leader in fuel cell technology and engineering, revealed that it is hosting a Capital Markets Day at its new manufacturing facility in Redhill today. The group said Phil Caldwell (CEO) and Richard Preston (CFO) will be joined by senior management colleagues who will describe the areas of activity for the business and the key drivers for growth alongside a tour of the manufacturing facility. It pointed out that no further material or new information will be disclosed in the presentations and there will be no statement on current trading.
IronRidge Resources Limited (LON:IRR) said it will be attending the 121 Mining Investment Event on November 12-13, at Clifton Venues, 10 Spring Street, Sydney, Australia. The group pointed out that the presentation can be viewed on the Investor Relations section of the company's website.
Base Resources Limited (LON:BSE) (ASX:BSE), the African mineral sands producer, said its latest company presentation, which was delivered today at the TZMI Congress in Singapore, is available from the company’s website.