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Tricorn shares bent out of shape by fundraising plans

A look at some of the major movers on Friday 17 January

Character Group - Character Group and Zinc Media on the naughty step in early deals

Tricorn Group PLC (LON:TCN) tumbled 11% to 12.5p as it announced plans to raise funds by placing shares at 10p a time.

The tube manipulation specialist intends to raise £1mln through the placing and said it also intends to crank out another £490,000 through an open offer of shares.

The funds raised will be used to strengthen the group's balance sheet, for working capital purposes and to fund capital expenditure on a dedicated manufacturing cell at Rabun Gap, USA.

1.00pm: Not telling porkies; Cranswick rushes out profits upgrade

Sausage maker Cranswick PLC (LON:CWK) has issued a profit upgrade for its current year as strong Christmas trading and an exceptional performance in its export division drove earnings higher.

The FTSE 250 firm said in an unscheduled trading update that the “robust performance” in its interim results had continued over the important festive trading period, with positive growth across each of its four product categories.

The shares were up 8.8% at 3, 694p.

11.30am: Keras Resources soars on Nayega manganese project update

Keras Resources PLC (LON:KRS) enjoyed a rare stint in the sun after an update on its Togo operations sent the shares soaring 30% to 0.2p.

"We remain on track to commence commercial production in the first quarter of 2020,” said Russell Lamming, the chief executive officer of Keras.

Lamming is currently in Togo meeting with government officials, interested and affected parties and the management team of Société Générale de Mines (the company in which Keras has an 85% interest) to close the permitting process at the Nayega manganese project.

10.30am: IAG flying high after scrapping non-EU ownership cap

Shares in British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines Group (LON:IAG) ascended 5.5% to 673.6p after it cancelled a self-imposed limit on non-EU shareholders.

The FTSE 100 airline group said the decision had been made to scrap the permitted maximum total of “relevant non-EU persons” holding its shares after it fell below 40%.

In order to maintain its status as a European-owned airline, the cap on ownership of its shares by non-Europeans at a maximum of 47.5% had been introduced when it hit that level in February last year.

9.30am: Father Christmas asleep on the job

Father Christmas was asleep on the job in December, hitting sales of Character Group PLC (LON:CCT) and sending the shares plunging 19% to 307p.

The maker of Peppa Pig, Pokemon and Dr Who toys had already warned the market six weeks ago that Christmas trading was “challenging” and it appears that Character Group was unable to rise to the challenge as well as it hoped as it warned that its first-half results would be hit by the contracting UK toys market.

“Despite the anticipated strong finish to the current financial year, the weakened Christmas performance has led the board to believe that the group's profit before tax for the year ending 31 August 2020 will be circa £10mln, which is lower than current consensus expectations,” Character Group said.

Also consigned to the naughty step this morning was Zinc Media Group PLC (LON:ZINC), which dived 23% to 0.18p after it announced a fundraising exercise.

The company intends to raise £3.5mln by placing shares at 0.18p a pop.

The funds raised will primarily be used to finance the company’s transformation plan, unveiled in September of last year.

Proactive headlines:

OptiBiotix Health PLC (LON:OPTI) said it was mulling a stock market listing on NASDAQ as it provided revenue guidance for its last financial year and said it hoped to reach profitability in 2020. It has tasked adviser goetzpartners securities to assess the potential of a dual UK-US quote. “Given high investor and consumer interest in the microbiome in the USA and growing sales the board OptiBiotix has commissioned advisors to explore the potential of a dual NASDAQ listing," said chief executive Stephen O’Hara.

Ncondezi Energy Ltd (LON:NCCL) has told investors that it expects to finalise power tariff negotiations in the first half of 2020  for the integrated Ncondezi coal-fired power project and coal mine in Tete, Mozambique. "The process to finalise a tariff offer for submission to EDM is well underway and on track for submission in Q1 2020,” said Hanno Pengilly, Ncondezi's chief executive in a statement. “The company continues to work closely with its strategic partners and tariff financial advisor to achieve a competitive firm tariff offer in line with the latest agreed tariff rates in Mozambique,” he added.

Live Company Group PLC (LON:LVCG) is targeting an expansion of its BRICKLIVE brand in 2020 as it kicked off the year with higher contracted revenues. The media firm said in a trading update for the year ended 31 December that it has secured £3mln in recognised revenues for the coming year, over 50% higher than 2019, while it is also aiming to build up to 16 BRICKLIVE themed tours before the end of 2020.

Itaconix PLC (LON:ITX) and Nouryon have agreed to terminate their agreement for Nouryon to exclusively distribute Itaconix polymers with chelating properties worldwide for detergent applications. The parties signed a supply agreement in January 2019 after conducting encouraging joint technical assessments of Itaconix's polymers in detergent applications. An initial marketing trial by Nouryon indicated, however, that the agreement was not mutually attractive for accessing available customer opportunities, Itaconix said.

Landore Resources Limited (LON:LND) has appointed Glenn Featherby as a non-executive director with immediate effect. The group pointed out that Featherby has over 35 years' experience in corporate advisory work, and an extensive background in the resources sector, having begun his career with KPMG in Perth and London, prior to establishing his own accounting practice in Perth in 1997. It noted that he has previously served as a non-executive director of Patagonia Gold PLC and as non-executive chairman of Forte Energy NL.

Crossword Cybersecurity PLC (LON:CCS), the technology commercialisation company focused solely on cyber security and risk, said it has received a notice exercising options to acquire 13,333 ordinary shares in the company at a price of 280p each.

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