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TRADING UPDATES: BioPharma backs Collegium; Eurasia creates Kola

Mon, 14th Feb 2022 22:19

(Alliance News) - The following is a round-up of updates by London-listed companies, issued Monday and not separately reported by Alliance News:

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Investment Co PLC - investor in equity, debt or convertible securities of quoted businesses - Ends 2021 with net asset value per share of 349.26 pence versus 341.19p at June 30. Notes 2.5% gain on portfolio valuation in first half. Equity shareholder funds rises to GBP16.7 million from GBP16.3 million over six-month period. "In these uncertain and volatile times, we believe the company is well positioned to provide shareholders with capital preservation and wealth creation over the long-term. Furthermore, we continue to evaluate opportunities to grow the capital base," company says.

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Duke Royalty Ltd - Guernsey-based royalty finance provider - Makes follow-on investment of GBP1.7 million into existing royalty partner InTec Business Solutions Ltd to fund its latest acquisition of of Opal IT Ltd, an IT Managed Services business. InTec is an investment holding company created to buy companies within the IT Managed Services sector in the UK and Ireland. Financing increases company's total investment into InTec to GBP14.0 million.

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Intuitive Investments Group PLC - closed-end investment company focused on life sciences sector - Invests GBP250,000 to acquire 156,250 new shares in Ocutec Ltd, representing a 6.0% stake in Ocutec's enlarged share capital, as part of a GBP1.4 million fundraising round. "Ocutec has patented technology covering the formulation of novel contact lens products, contact lens comfort solutions and injection moulding technology for rapid manufacturing. Ocutec is based in Glasgow, and has been operating since 2006, having been spun out of the University of Strathclyde," company says.

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UP Global Sourcing Holdings PLC - Oldham, Greater Manchester-based consumer brands owner - Expects revenue in six months to January 31 up 14% year on year to GBP85.7 million from GBP75.4 million. Says full year performance will be in line with current market expectations. "The well-documented global supply chain challenges continue to represent a headwind for the business. While the situation remains uncertain and subject to change, conditions have recently shown early signs of improvement and the board is cautiously optimistic that the worst is behind the group," company says.

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BioPharma Credit PLC - life sciences debt investment trust - Commits to enter new USD650 million senior secured term loan agreement with Collegium Pharmaceutical Inc. Facility will be used to fund Collegium's proposed acquisition of BioDelivery Sciences International Inc, as well as to repay the outstanding debt of Collegium and BDSI. "Under the terms of the new loan agreement, upon the closing of the M&A transaction, the company will invest USD325 million in a single drawing and BioPharma-V will invest USD325 million in parallel, with the company acting as collateral agent," company says. The four-year loan will have USD100 million in amortization payments during the first year and the remaining USD550 million balance will amortize in equal quarterly instalments. The loan will bear interest at 3-month LIBOR plus 7.50% per annum. Intends to fund this investment from current cash on hand, USD102 million, proceeds from the BDSI and Collegium repayment as well as drawing on its credit facility with JPMorgan.

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ValiRx PLC - Nuneaton, England-based drug development company - Enters evaluation agreement with University of Barcelona in Spain to investigate a drug candidate for use in oncology. As part of the agreement, the company will carry out a defined series of preclinical tests on a lead series of peptidomimetic drug candidate molecules over the next twelve months to validate the technology and determine suitability for commercialisation. Costs of up to GBP100,000 will be borne by company.

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Roquefort Therapeutics PLC - London-based investor in early-stage medical biotechnology businesses - Appoints Trevor Jones as advisor to the board with immediate effect. He was a former director general of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry where he directed all the activities related to UK pharmaceutical industry government relations on behalf of national and international pharmaceutical companies. Chair Stephen West says: "Trevor's substantial expertise and track record in driving pre-clinical programmes and value creation in the biotech sector will help the Company navigate this exciting phase of its development, as we progress with Lyramid's pre-clinical programme."

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Inspiration Healthcare Group PLC - Crawley, West Sussex-based medical technology for use in critical care and operating theatres - Wins order worth USD1.4million for the supply of SLE6000 and SLE6000c ventilators to Egypt. It is expected the order will be satisfied within the next three to four months. Chief Executive Neil Campbell says: "This order will fall into our current financial year meaning an early boost to our already strong forward order book."

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Redcentric PLC - Harrogate, North Yorkshire-based IT managed services - Says it is "pleased" three former employees held accountable by UK Financial Conduct Authority in relation to historical accounting misstatements issued by the company in 2015 and 2016. "The company gave its full support and cooperation to the FCA throughout its investigation and prosecution of the individuals. The company also reached a settlement with the FCA in 2020 and compensated affected shareholders through a restitution scheme amounting to approximately GBP9 million," company says. Notes it has made "wholesale changes" to its board of directors and management team since 2016. Has "overhauled" accounting structures, controls and governance processes.

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Frontier IP Group PLC - London-based intellectual property commercialisation company - Sells further 207,299 American depositary shares of portfolio company Exscientia PLC for net proceeds of approximately USD4.3 million at an average price of USD20.63 per ADS. Will own 1.2 million shares in Exscientia following sale. Company plans to use the net proceeds from the sale of ADSs for general working capital purposes and to provide further support to its existing portfolio companies.

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Circle Property PLC - London-based buyer, developer and manager of regional office assets in UK - Agrees to sell Kents Hill Park Conference Centre, its largest asset, to LXI Property Holdings 4 Ltd, a subsidiary of LXi REIT PLC, for GBP34.5 million cash. Kents Hill Park comprises offices and a conference centre, fully let to Compass Contract Services Ltd, part of FTSE 100-listed Compass Group PLC. Kents Hill Park was acquired by the company in December 2013 for GBP11 million. Notes sale exceeds 75% of company's market capitalisation, so under UK listing rules, is conditional on shareholder approval. Also notes plan to "continue to make targeted asset sales in an orderly manner over an extended period of two to three years, if not sooner." Chair Ian Henderson says: "Notwithstanding the strong financial and operational performance of the company since IPO, the discount in the company's share price relative to its NAV persists, and therefore the company will, following completion of the disposal, continue to selectively divest assets in the best interests of shareholders."

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Altus Strategies PLC - Didcot, England-based mining royalty company - Extends repayment date of the acquisition loan facility between La Mancha and company maturing on February 17. Repayment date now June 30, 2022 and the annualised interest rate of the facility has been increased from 9% plus the USD London Inter-bank Offered Rate to 10% plus USD LIBOR. All other provisions of the loan remain unchanged.

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Global Petroleum Ltd - oil & gas exploration in Africa and the Mediterranean - Plans to conduct "detailed study" of Italian hydrocarbon plan following European Court found that its four permit applications offshore Italy in the Southern Adriatic do not contravene EU law. The company had said back in July 2019 that the Region of Puglia appealed to the Council of State, the highest level of appeal in Italy, against judgements related to four environmental decrees.

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Aura Energy Ltd - Australia-based minerals company with polymetallic and uranium projects in Europe and Africa - Notes it is now included in the Global X Uranium ETF, which it says is one of the world's most prominent uranium and nuclear industry indexes globally, with USD1.16 billion of assets under management. "The Global X Uranium ETF provides investors access to a broad range of companies involved in uranium mining and the production of nuclear components, including those in extraction, refining, exploration, or manufacturing of equipment for the uranium and nuclear industries," company says. Chief Executive Will Goodall adds: "We expect that the inclusion will raise awareness for the company in the global investment community. Aura continues to build a presence as a developer in the uranium sector and we expect that this inclusion will lead to introductions to new investors and possible partners for the company and our projects."

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Metals Exploration PLC - mineral resource exploration and development company with assets in the Philippines - Updates mineral resource estimate at Runruno gold project in the Philippines to 26.5 million tonnes from 25.7 million in 2011. Notes new resource model shows an increase in tonnage but at a lower grade. The net result is an overall increase of 30,000 measured and indicated resource ounces. Chief Executive Darren Bowden says: "The results released today demonstrate a life of mine of at least five years which, given the work that we have carried out and are undertaking we are confident can be extended. This report shows we have an excellent project and that we have built a solid foundation from which to grow."

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Eurasia Mining PLC - Russia-focused mining and mineral exploration company - Incorporates 100% beneficially owned subsidiary, Kola Mining LLC, to carve out Eurasia's platinum group metals assets into a separate entity from the nickel assets being consolidated into the already incorporated Kola Nickel LLC. Executive Chair Christian Schaffalitzky says: "The directors are pleased that our structuring is approaching completion, as we work hard with DLA Piper and our other legal advisers. We are making good progress despite the current geopolitical context and a separate announcement will be provided. Contrary to speculations, the directors and the officers of Eurasia have not sold any shares and, as the largest shareholder group, are focused on the liquidity event along with all shareholders."

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President Energy PLC - Leeds-based oil & gas company focused on Latin America - Company's 2P reserves in Argentina at end of 2021 assessed at a "robust" 24.4 millions of barrels of oil equivalent versus 23.6 million a year earlier. Also notes 2021 turnover USD34.2 million, with average production 2,473 barrels of oil equivalent per day, down from 2,714 in 2020. Chair Peter Levine says: "Whilst trading in 2021 was solid, despite the static production taking into account the loss in all material respects of Louisiana's contribution in the year, we still showed a healthy, operationally profitable business. On a strategic level, we produced material returns for our shareholders through the spin out and IPO of Atome Energy PLC and successfully, notwithstanding the pandemic, farmed out our Paraguay exploration prospect to the state energy company of Taiwan."

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By Paul McGowan; paulmcgowan@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2022 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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