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Proactive news snapshot: Nektan, Kodal Minerals, AFC Energy, Jersey Oil & Gas …

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

Nektan PLC's (LON:NKTN) decision to restructure and focus on providing its gaming platform to businesses is going well, with revenues growing strongly. The company said its business-to-business (B2B) division in the six months to the end of December saw revenues rise 153.1% to £787,000 from the preceding six months’ total of £311,000.

Kodal Minerals PLC (LON:KOD) has completed a feasibility study for the Bougouni lithium project in Mali, and submitted its contents as part of a mining licence application to the relevant authorities. The study envisages a project with a minimum 8.5-year mine life producing an average of 220,000 tonnes of 6% spodumene concentrate per annum.

AFC Energy PLC (LON:AFC) has unveiled a commercialisation agreement with green tech firm HiiROC to produce zero-emission hydrogen fuel from natural gas. The AIM-listed firm said under the deal it will seek to obtain global preferential rights to integrate HiiROC’s plasma-based technology, which extracts hydrogen from methane and biomethane gas without emitting carbon dioxide, into its H-Power fuel cells.

Jersey Oil & Gas PLC (LON:JOG) is increasing its ownership of the undeveloped Verbier oil discovery through a deal with Equinor. The explorer, which presently holds 18% of the project, has agreed to buy a 70% interest in Licence P2170 from Equinor in return for contingent future payments, tied to potential successes and milestones.

H&T GROUP PLC (LON:HAT), the UK’s leading pawnbroker, has predicted that its profit before tax for 2019 will be at the top end of current market expectations. In a trading update, the firm said the strong performance was driven by a number of factors, including a 39% year-on-year increase in its pledge book.

SIMEC Atlantis Energy Limited (LON:SAE) has delivered an update on the performance of its MeyGen tidal power project in 2019, which saw the longest period of uninterrupted generation ever achieved for a multi-megawatt tidal turbine array. The sustainable energy firm said MeyGen has now exported 24.7 gigawatt hours (GWh) of predictable renewable electricity to the UK’s national grid, with 13.8 GWh exported in 2019 alone, enough to power around 3,800 homes and generating revenues of £3.9mln.

Equals Group PLC (LON:EQLS) has reported a surge in revenues and earnings for 2019 despite what it said were “challenging market conditions” caused by record-low currency volatilities. In a trading update, the e-banking and international payments specialist said adjusted earnings (EBITDA) are expected to be 30% higher than 2018, while revenue is forecast to increase by around 20%.

Faron Pharmaceuticals Oy (LON:FARN) (FIRSTNORTH:FARON) said its precision immunotherapy will be used in women suffering ovarian cancer. In what’s called a second expansion cohort of the company’s phase I/II MATINS clinical trial, Faron drug Clevegen will continue to be assessed for safety and efficacy.

Rockfire Resources PLC (LON:ROCK) shares got a boost on Monday as the miner said it had intersected “strong sulphides” during drilling at its Plateau gold deposit in north Queensland. The AIM-listed firm said all holes drilled in the programme, which had been completed ahead of schedule and within budget, had intersected “broad intervals of sulphides” including one zone of strong sulphides of up to 50%.

IQ-AI Limited (LON:IQAI) said its Imaging Biometrics (IB) subsidiary, a provider of ready-to-use software to the healthcare industry, has enlisted a university professor to its development team. The investment company, focused on technology and logistics sectors, noted that Jay Urbain has been a university professor for 16 years and said he will retain a non-permanent role at the Milwaukee School of Engineering and at the Medical College of Wisconsin after joining IB.

ECR Minerals PLC (LON: ECR) said its 100%-owned subsidiary Mercator Gold has been granted four exploration licences in the Yilgarn region of Western Australia. The licences form part of the Windidda project, which is considered to be prospective for komatiite hosted nickel, copper and platinum group elements, as well as orogenic gold.

OptiBiotix Health PLC (LON:OPTI) said its partner ALFASIGMA has launched a food supplement containing the cholesterol-reducing LPLDL probiotic strain developed by subsidiary ProBiotix Health. ALFASIGMA, which generates revenues of €1 billion, operates in 90 countries and has 3,000 employees globally, will market this first-of-its-kind nutraceutical probiotic in Italy for cholesterol reduction. The companies inked an exclusive commercial agreement in the summer of 2018.

Directa Plus PLC (LON:DCTA) is to invest €240,000 into an EU-sponsored initiative to develop a digital printing method for textiles using graphene. The €1mln GREEN.TEX project is designed to reduce the environmental impact of textiles production and also involves EFI Reggiani, the Italian subsidiary of global digital printing group Electronics For Imaging (EFI), and IBS Consulting.

Bluejay Mining PLC (LON:JAY) has been awarded a new mineral exploration licence surrounding the company's existing Kangerluarsuk zinc-lead-silver project in central west Greenland.  Bluejay intends to commence a maiden drill programme at the project later this year.

Diversified Gas & Oil PLC (LON:DGOC) released a production update on Monday confirming that its production business is trading in line with current market forecasts. The update, ahead of full results statement due in March, revealed 2019 ‘exit’ production rates of 94,800 barrels oil equivalent per day (boepd) for its consolidated asset base. The average production rate measured around 96,300 boepd for the fourth quarter, the company said. This marks a 5.7% improvement on the preceding quarter.

ZAIM Credit Systems PLC (LON:ZAIM) expects increased lending volumes and better credit scoring to boost its performance 'materially' in the current year. The Russia-focused microlender said impairments as a percentage of the loan book fell to 5.6% in the three months to September, down from 9.1% in the March quarter, though numbers for the final quarter are not yet available. The value of loans advanced rose to £838,000 in December from £721,000 in October.

Block Energy PLC (LON:BLOE) has told investors that multi-rate production testing presently underway on the WR-38Z well at the West Rustavi field has so far shown peak results of around 550 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd). The peak production rate in the tests to date – following a clean-up period to stabilise the well and recover drilling fluids – comprised 300 barrels of oil plus 1.5mln cubic feet of gas per day.

Columbus Energy Resources PLC (LON:CERP) has marked the beginning of CO₂ gas injection in the enhanced oil recovery (EOR) project at the  Trinity Inniss field, Trinidad. The company said that it has so far injected the first tank of gas into the AT5X well at Trinity Inniss and over time it will now determine what impact this has for enhanced production in ‘offset’ wells to AT5X.

Shield Therapeutics PLC (LON:STX), the drugs developer focused on addressing iron deficiency, said 2019 was a year of material progress. In a trading update covering the year just ended the company flagged up the “broad label” approval of its lead drug, Accrufer, by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year and the positive results on the AEGIS-H2H study, which demonstrated Ferracru’s orally taken treatment was not inferior to Ferinject, the leading intravenous iron therapy.

Argo Blockchain PLC (LON:ARB) has appointed non-executive director Ian MacLeod as its executive chairman with immediate effect. MacLeod, who succeeds outgoing chairman Mike Edwards, also serves as corporate secretary and general counsel at telecoms and e-commerce-focused private equity investment fund Teligence. Meanwhile, Argo also said it is ahead of schedule to reach its goal of 17,000 installed machines by the end of the first quarter of 2020, with 15,730 cryptocurrency mining machines currently operating.

accesso Technology Group PLC (LON:ASCO), the premier technology solutions provider to leisure, entertainment, hospitality, attractions and cultural markets, said that, further to its announcement of 23 January 2020, Steve Brown has now been appointed as the new chief executive officer with immediate effect. The company also confirmed that Paul Noland has now resigned as chief executive officer and steps down from his role on the accesso board concurrent with Brown's appointment.

Arix Bioscience PLC (LON:ARIX) said a company it co-founded in 2018 has emerged from “stealth mode” after completing a Series A financing, that brings total committed funding to $50mln. It teamed up with US venture capital group Atlas Venture to create pre-clinical stage firm Quench Bio, which is working on the first anti-inflammatory and autoimmune drugs targeting a protein called Gasdermin D.

Nuformix PLC (LON:NFX), the pharmaceutical development company using cocrystal technology to unlock the therapeutic potential of approved small molecule drugs has announced the resignation of non-executive director John Lidgey from its board with effect from 31 January 2020. The group noted that Lidgey chaired Levrett PLC from inception through to the successful reverse merger with Nuformix in October 2017 and then remained on the board as NED. It said he has now decided it is time to move on to pursue new opportunities.

Blue Star Capital PLC (LON:BLU), the investing company with a focus on esports, technology and its applications within media and gaming, announced that Cairn Financial Advisers has been appointed as broker to the company with immediate effect.

Oncimmune Holdings PLC (LON:ONC), a leading global immunodiagnostics group, said it will be holding a Capital Markets Update for analysts and investors alongside its half year results for the six months ended 30 November 2019, on Wednesday, 12 February 2020. The group said Adam Hill, its chief executive officer and Matthew Hall, chief financial officer, will host a presentation and conference call for analysts at 2:00pm GMT on the day of the results.

Cabot Square Alternatives Plc (LON:ALTS), a closed-ended investment company established to invest directly in a portfolio of infrastructure and property alternative assets and asset managers managing such alternative assets, has announced plans for an initial public offering (IPO) and admission to the main market of the London Stock Exchange. As part of the IPO, the company said it is seeking to raise £200mln by way of an initial placing and share subscription at an issue price of 100p per ordinary share.

Kromek Group PLC (LONKMK), a worldwide supplier of detection technology focusing on the medical, security screening and nuclear markets, told investors that Elizabeth Truss MP, Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, visited its global headquarters in NETPark, County Durham on Friday, 24 January 2020, as part of her role to promote UK businesses overseas and attract international investment. Dr Arnab Basu, CEO of Kromek, commented: "As a company active in multiple global markets, we are grateful for the support of the Department for International Trade and proud to be a UK Export Champion.” Prior to the meeting, Kromek CEO Dr Arnab Basu also joined Chris Skidmore MP, Minister of State for Universities, Science Research and Innovation, on a visit to Durham University.

Mineral and Financial Investments Limited (LON:MAFL) confirmed that at its AGM held on Monday, all resolutions were duly approved.

Tally Ltd, , which offers customers the chance to buy currency backed by physical gold, said the second version of its app is now available for download. The group said now the base product is in place it is in a position to map out plans and timings for the rest of this year and will update shareholders on key milestones for 2020 by the end of March.

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