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Egdon Resources dips as PEDL143 licence is relinquished

A look at some of the major movers in London on Friday

DeepMatter Group PLC -

Egdon Resources PLC (LON:EDR) dipped 2.9% to 1.7p after UK Oil & Gas PLC relinquished its interest in the PEDL143 licence.

Egdon has an 18.4% interest in the licence.

"The relinquishment is supported by Egdon, as a technically and commercially viable site to drill the A24 Prospect (formerly Holmwood) couldn't be identified. It enables Egdon to focus its resources on the core near-term priorities; namely, moving to production at Wressle during this quarter, progressing drilling options at Biscathorpe and North Kelsey, and acquiring a marine 3D seismic survey over the Resolution and Endeavour gas discoveries during the coming period,2 said Mark Abbott, the managing director of Egdon.

2.10pm: Wishbone Gold loses lustre as first-half sales slump

Wishbone Gold PLC (LON:WSBN), down 4% at 4.8p, lost a bit of its lustre after posting sharply reduced first-half sales and another loss.

The six months ended 30 June 2020 saw total sales of US$3.637mln, down from US$6.56mln in the first half of 2019.

The loss, at US$339,730, was at least an improvement on the previous year’s loss of US$537,737.

1.20pm: Still, there's always Brexit, eh, Tim?

JD Wetherspoon PLC (LON:JDW) shares sank like a pint of Timothy Taylor’s Landlord to 851p – down 11% - after the pubs group plunged into the red.

In its results for the year ended July 26, 2020, the FTSE 250 pubs group reported a pre-tax loss of £34.1mln compared to a profit of £102.5mln in the previous year, while revenues by tumbled 30.6% to £1.26bn and like-for-like (LFL) sales fell 29.5%.

The company’s dividend for the full year was also scrapped compared to a 12p payout last year, with the firm’s chairman Tim Martin saying the outlook for the year ahead is “even more unpredictable” than the prior 12 month period. He noted that Wetherspoon's LFL sales in the first 11 weeks of the current year have been 15% below the same period a year ago as strong sales in the first few weeks were followed by a “marked slowdown” since the UK’s introduction of a 10pm curfew on pubs and other new restrictions.

12.45pm: Mind Gym slumps as pandemic punctures face-to-face training market

Mind Gym PLC (LON:MIND) slumped 14% to 80p on the back of its half-year trading update.

The provider of corporate and staff training solutions said trading in the period reflected the disruption caused by the emergence of the coronavirus, which forced many of Mind Gym’s customers to cancel face-to-face training sessions.

Half-year revenues are expected to be down 40% year-on-year when the numbers are finally totted up but October is forecast to deliver a marked increase in revenue, continuing the group's month-on-month improvement in performance through August and September.

11.50am: SpaceandPeople's revenues plummet

SpaceandPeople PLC (LON:SAL), the retail, promotional and brand experience specialist, fell 12% to 4.1p as it reported a 72% plunge in half-year revenues.

The company saw losses swell in the first half of the year but said after cutting costs it will be able to trade through further coronavirus lockdowns as they emerge.

Losses before tax widened to £2.1mln from a loss of £14,000 the year before.

10.55am: Berkeley Energia attempts to calm fears over possible regulatory changes in Spain

Berkeley Energia Limited (LON:BKY) hardened 4.4% to 23.5p after it drew shareholders’ attention to possible changes to Spain’s climate change and energy transition bill.

Under one of the proposed amendments, investigation and exploitation of radioactive minerals would be prohibited in the Spanish territory and any open proceedings related to the authorisation of radioactive facilities of the nuclear fuel cycle for the processing of such minerals would be closed.

Berkeley reiterated its position that “prohibition of economic activities in Spain with no justified reasons is contrary to the Spanish Constitution and to the legal rights recognised by other international instruments”.

10.00am: Loungers still in expansion mode

Loungers PLC (LON:LGRS), the café and bar operator, rose 7.9% to 151p after catching the market on the hop with a strong trading update.

Proving it has not all been doom and gloom in the UK hospitality sector, the company said it opened three new sites recently and expects to open another three before the end of its financial year in April.

In a trading update for the 13 weeks to October 4, 2020, the firm said like-for-like sales climbed by 25% while all 168 Loungers sites remain open despite the ongoing restrictions.

9.15am: DeepMatter surges as contract wins for ICSYNTH continue to roll in

DeepMatter Group PLC (LON:DMTR) shot 17% higher to 2.05p in early trade on Friday after the firm said it has secured contracts with five new major customers.

The contracts have been won over the last two months for its computer-aided synthesis design tool, ICSYNTH.

"With machine learning and cloud technologies both powerful tools in the race to accelerated drug discovery, we see a growing opportunity for both our ICSYNTH and DigitalGlassware platforms and look to the future with confidence,” said Mark Warne, the chief executive of DeepMatter said in a statement.

Braveheart Investment Group PLC (LON:BRH), up 28% at 46p, was one of the top risers on Friday after an update on Paraytec Limited, in which it has an interest.

Paraytec has completed proof of concept trials for a coronavirus test it is developing with the University of Sheffield.

Braveheart, which invests in start-up companies, said that since the achievement of proof of concept for the optical detection system on October 5, the focus has been on the proof of concept trials for the capture and signal generation modules for the test.

Proactive news headlines:

Braveheart Investment Group PLC (LON:BRH) said its investee Paraytec Limited has completed proof of concept trials for a coronavirus test it is developing with the University of Sheffield. The investment firm said following the achievement of proof of concept for the optical detection system on October 5, the focus has been on the proof of concept trials for the capture and signal generation modules for the test. Braveheart said the proof of concept has now been achieved for the capture and signal generation modules, thereby successfully completing the proof of concept trials for the test. Work will now focus on the acquisition of clinically relevant data to facilitate optimisation of the functional capabilities of the test, together with a programme of product refinement and development.

Catenae Innovation PLC (LON:CTEA) has said it is forming a joint-venture with the UK and South African arms of BHA-Medical to deliver an integrated coronavirus (COVID-19) test, monitor, and manage programme that can be used by governments, businesses and other organisations. The AIM-listed technology and media group is the developer of the Cov-ID electronic passport, while BHA has supplied 350,000 three-antibody tests in the UK to customers including two FTSE 100 companies. BHA will provide both the three-antibody and Healgen antigen tests to the JV. Both deliver results in 20 minutes.

Galileo Resources PLC (LON:GLR) has completed its acquisition of Africibum, delivering the company 100% interests in five prospecting licences known as the ‘North East Kalahari Copper Belt Project’, in Botswana. To acquire the assets the company has issued 42mln Galileo shares to Africibum's ordinary shareholders and a further 7mln shares have been issued to one seller to reimburse costs incurred by Africibum. Share warrants were also issued as part of the transaction, allowing new Galileo shares to be purchased priced at 2p over the next two years. "I am very pleased that we have completed the acquisition of Africibum whose licences lie in an area of high prospectivity in the Kalahari Copper Belt,” Colin Bird, Galileo executive chairman said in a statement.

Scancell Holdings PLC (LON:SCLP) said it made strong progress as a business in the year to the end of April 2020. The developer of immunotherapies for the treatment of cancer and infectious disease revealed in its full-year results that it ended the reporting period with £3.58mln cash, down from £4.56mln at the end of April 2019. Since then, it has completed a £15mln fund-raising to fund its Phase 1/2 clinical trial for Modi-1 and the Phase 2 clinical trial for SCIB1, while it is currently in the process of raising up to £33mln to allow it to extend the utility of its Moditope, ImmunoBody and AvidiMab/TaG antibody products and platforms to accelerate and broaden its development pipeline of new potential novel therapies.

Open Orphan PLC (LON:ORPH) has said that, further to its announcement of September 24, 2020, and further media comment the company confirms that it remains in advanced negotiations with the UK Government and other partners for a Coronavirus challenge study in the UK. It added no contract has been signed and the company will update the market in due course as appropriate.

Circle Property PLC (LON:CRC) has said rent collections for the final quarter of 2020 are now at 75%, with the September quarter at 80% including agreed monthly payments. The strong collection rate reflected its focus on UK regional offices and minimal retail exposure, the property group added in a trading update.  Rent collection for the March and June 2020 quarters had also improved since last reported, Circle said, and now stands at 93% and 89%, respectively with further improvement expected.

IXICO PLC (LON:IXI) has said it is providing its neuroscience and data analytics expertise to a trial being run by NYU Langone Health to assess a new and potentially breakthrough use for a drug called Sirolimus. Currently used to help prevent organ transplant rejection, the immunosuppressant is also able to slow the progression of multiple system atrophy (MSA) – a condition of the central nervous system that causes gradual damage to nerve cells in the brain. The project with NYU Langone involves applying of IXICO's existing MSA analysis solutions to MRI retrospectively collected data from patients with the condition, as well as those that have dementia with Lewy Bodies, Parkinson's disease, and progressive supranuclear palsy.

Iofina PLC (LON:IOF) told investors it is on track to deliver within guidance for the second half of 2020. The company said it expects to achieve the lower end of its production forecast, pitched at 340 to 360 tonnes. Third-quarter crystalline iodine production volumes amounted to 170.8 tonnes, compared to 167.3 in the same period in 2019. It has tallied some 455 tonnes of production over the nine months ended September 30, 2020.

Zephyr Energy PLC (LON:ZPHR), the Rocky Mountain oil and gas company focused on responsible resource development, has announced a placing of 409,090,909 new ordinary shares of 0.1p each in the company, at a price of 0.55p each to raise £2.25 million before expenses. The group said the placing, which was oversubscribed, has been conducted with a range of new, existing and institutional investors and with Turner Pope Investments acting as a broker for the company. Colin Harrington, chief executive of Zephyr, said: "We are delighted to announce this placing, which fully finances the company's maximum funding obligations for drilling the State 16-2 dual-use well on our acreage in the Paradox Basin, Utah.  With the funding now secured, the company remains on track to spud the well before the end of the year. We expect the processing and interpretation of the data acquired to take place early in the New Year, following which we hope to be in a position to commence commercial drilling operations utilising the 16-2 wellbore shortly thereafter."

Salt Lake Potash Ltd (ASX:SO4) (LON:SO4) (OTCMKTS:WHELF) is continuing the development of the Lake Way Sulphate of Potash (SOP) Project in Western Australia with on-lake and off-lake operations progressing on schedule. The company has also delivered the funding package for the project which includes two components: A US$138 million (A$203 million) Syndicated Facility Agreement (SFA) with Taurus Mining Finance Fund No2 LP and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC); and a fully underwritten A$98.5 million placement and accelerated non-renounceable entitlement offer (ANREO) at 50 cents per share completed in September 2020. In combination, these funds will enable the company to complete the funding and deliver the project on schedule, with the first SOP production expected in the March quarter of 2021.

Avation PLC (LON:AVAP) has confirmed it is scheduled to publish its results at 7.00am BST on Friday, October 2020. Investors can participate in the conference call by using the following link: https://avation.emincote.com/avapFY2020/vip_connect. Investors will be asked to register a name and email address. Participants will receive a telephone number, a passcode and an individual PIN number. The conference call will also be webcast live through the following link: https://avation.emincote.com/avapFY2020

Metal Tiger PLC (NON:MTR), the AIM-listed investor in natural resources opportunities, has confirmed that the company’s London office will close with effect from October 16, 2020. As a result, the company’s registered office address has changed with immediate effect to Weston Farm House, Weston Down Lane, Weston Colley, Winchester, Hampshire, S021 3AG.

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