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Proactive news snapshot: Verona Pharma, Anglo African Oil & Gas, Faron Pharmaceuticals, KRM22 …

A glance at some of the day's highlights from the Proactive Investors newswire

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Your daily round-up from the world of Proactive

Verona Pharma PLC’s (LON:VRP, NASDAQ:VRNA) lead investigator for its phase IIb study of the firm's drug for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has described the results from the trial as “impressive”. The nebulized ensifentrine treatment was being assessed in harness with a current established treatment called tiotropium, a long-acting anti-muscarinic, which relaxes and enlarges the airways in the lung. The combination had a “strong effect” on both bronchodilation (opening of the airways) and quality of life.

Anglo African Oil & Gas PLC (LON:AAOG) and Zenith Energy PLC (LON:ZEN) have agreed a ‘put and call’ option deal for Zenith to acquire a final 20% stake in the AAOG Congo subsidiary which holds a 56% interest in the Tilapia field. In December, Zenith agreed a deal to acquire 80% of AAOG Congo from AOOG, and, via the new option deal, it can take full ownership of the subsidiary subject to Tilapia’s production performance in the next year.

Faron Pharmaceuticals Oy (LON:FARN) (NASDAQ-FIRSTNORTH:FARON) said the data monitoring committee overseeing the phase I/II trial of its cancer drug has approved an expansion of the study into late-stage colorectal cancer. The MATINS assessment is currently gauging safety and tolerability as well as the efficacy of its Clevegen treatment in people with melanoma, pancreatic, ovarian and colorectal cancer. The drug, which can switch immune suppression to immune activation, will be administered in a low dose (0.3 milligrams per kilogram) in colorectal patients.

Iconic Labs PLC (LON:ICON) shares jumped on Monday as the group unveiled a new consulting and marketing deal with a UK-based online wellness platform. Under the agreement, the value of which was not disclosed, the media firm will deliver a six-week campaign to distribute advertising content to the 'on-demand Yoga and Pilates market', which the company estimated to be worth around £800mln in the UK alone.

Ergomed PLC (LON:ERGO) shares were on the up on Monday as the firm said it has purchased US drug safety firm Ashfield Pharmacovigilance from UDG Healthcare PLC (LON:UDG) for US$10mln. The AIM-listed pharmaceutical services firm will make Ashfield part of its PrimeVigilence division while also establishing a platform for a “broader Ergomed services business in the US”. Ashfield will add over 40 new clients to Ergomed’s roster as well as an order book on contracted revenues worth US$9.8mln. The acquisition is also expected to immediately enhance earnings.

KRM22 PLC (LON:KRM) said it is “on track” to be profitable in 2020 following a strong uptick in revenues for 2019. In a trading update for the year ended 31 December, the risk management specialist said revenues for the period had risen to £4mln from £1.3mln and its adjusted underlying loss (EBITDA) will be “in line with expectations”

Instem PLC (LON:INS), the provider of information technology solutions to the life sciences market, saw strong organic revenue growth in 2019. Strong performance across the group's operations, combined with healthy new business pipelines, underpin management's confidence that the momentum achieved during 2019 will continue into the current year. The company revealed that revenues in 2019 were around 12% higher than in 2018 with underlying earnings (EBITDA) in line with management's expectations.

Remote Monitored Systems PLC's (LON:RMS) Cloudveil subsidiary has successfully completed testing of its unique mobile protective surveillance programme (MPSP) with a new client. The unnamed new client is a manufacturer and distributor of fast-moving consumer goods. The pilot scheme involved transporting a high-value cargo that was at serious risk from identified malicious threats across a continent at short notice.

Caledonia Mining Corporation Plc (LON:CMCL) (TSE:CAL) has produced a record 16,876 ounces of gold during the quarter ended 31 December 2019. In a statement, Caledonia’s chief executive Steve Curtis said that an improvement in the electricity supply and a rigid focus on grade control had helped boost production at the Blanket gold mine in Zimbabwe by 24% over the previous quarter, and by 13% compared to the corresponding quarter in 2018.

Base Resources Ltd (ASX:BSE) (LON:BSE) has issued revised production guidance for the Kwale mineral sands project in Kenya. In a statement, it said production of rutile is now expected to be between 75,000 and 81,000 tonnes, up from a previously forecast range of between 64,000 and 70,000. It said ilmenite and zircon guidance has also been boosted, as separation efficiency has improved following the transition from mining at the Central Dune to the South Dune.

NQ Minerals PLC (LON:NQMI) (OTCMKTS:NQMLF) generated A$15.5mln in revenue and gross profits of A$7.4mln during the fourth quarter of 2019. In a statement, the NEX-listed firm said base and precious metals production from the flagship Hellyer mine amounted to 8,160 tonnes of lead concentrate and 4,904 tonnes of zinc concentrate, while full-year revenues amounted to just under A$54mln.

Seeing Machines Limited LON:SEE) has announced a renewed supplier agreement with US chip firm Xilinx, which will supply the AIM-listed firm’s FOVIO Chip directly to automotive Tier 1 customers that are pre-approved by Seeing Machines The news came in a statement in which the advanced computer vision technology company said it will be exhibiting its FOVIO chip driver monitoring systems (DMS) technology at Automotive World in Tokyo, Japan's largest exhibition for advanced automotive technologies, on the Xilinx stand.

The City Pub Group PLC (LON:CPC) said difficult trading in December has prompted it to caution that it will miss the market’s profits expectations. Sales over 2019 rose by 31% to £59.8mln and by 1.7% like-for-like, but December was hit by the election uncertainty, higher wage costs, heavy rain and the impact of the strikes on South-West trains.

Feedback PLC (LON:FDBK) has entered a commercial partnership with tech firm Imaging Engineering (IE) to support the installation and refitting of fluoroscopy equipment across the US. Fluoroscopy is a type of medical scan where an X-ray is passed through the body continuously, allowing doctors to see real-time moving images of the inside of a patient.

Falcon Oil & Gas Ltd (LON:FOG) (CVE:FO) told investors that the Kyalla 117 N2-1H well, at the Beetaloo shale project, will undergo sidetrack drilling after the well’s original horizontal section experienced operational challenges. The Australian shale well’s vertical section was completed in November, and, horizontal drilling subsequently began in early December. After 700 metres of an intended 1,000-metre section, drilling challenges were encountered affecting the maintenance of clean hole conditions and stability in certain sections.

Sound Energy PLC (LON:SOU) has extended negotiations over the gas sales agreement for the Tendrara gas project in eastern Morocco, with a new deadline of 31 March 2020. It comes as the company continues to move Tendrara towards a Final Investment Decision. The company is working on a ‘build-own-operate-transfer’ funding solution for the infrastructure development that will support Tendrara, it noted.

Polarean Imaging PLC (LON:POLX), the medical imaging technology company, with a proprietary magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) drug-device combination, said it received notification on 10 January 2020 that Tyndall Investment Management now holds 4,917,016 ordinary shares in Polarean, which represents 4.3% of the company's issued share capital.

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