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TRADING UPDATES: Ten Entertainment post-lockdown boom; Mission payout

Wed, 22nd Sep 2021 14:24

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



Ten Entertainment Group PLC - Bedford, England-based ten pin bowling and family entertainment centres operator - Revenue in half-year to June 27 falls to GBP10.6 million from GBP22.5 million year-on-year as period continued to be hit by Covid-19 lockdown measures. Pretax loss widens to GBP10.8 million from GBP6.3 million. Says all centres were closed for the first 20 weeks of the year but since restrictions were lifted on May 17, it has reopened "extremely well". Total sales for six weeks from reopening in May to the end of the half were up 27% on the same period on 2019. Says momentum has continued over the summer, with sales growth on May 17 to September 12 of 39% compared to 2019. "We anticipate some pricing pressures in labour and cost of goods and this is likely to compress margins a little. However, as a proportion of our sales the impact is relatively small, and we consider these inflationary pressures to be manageable. Our pricing strategy will remain to offer good value to our customers and to use the resultant increased footfall and frequency as the engine for profit growth," company says.



Mission Group PLC - Devon-based creative and marketing technology agency - Revenue for six months to June 30 rises to GBP34.1 million from GBP29.1 million and firm swings to pretax profit of GBP1.4 million from loss of GBP2.3 million. Says performance in period was ahead of original expectations despite difficult backdrop with lockdown restrictions. Says easing of lockdown restrictions in UK and US has given clients more confidence to plan for events, leading to increased activity for its agencies. Declares interim dividend of 0.80 pence, after paying out nothing a year ago, and notes this is above 2019's interim payout of 0.77p. "The group has a long, pre-pandemic track record of delivering a considerable majority of its profit in the second half year. The board fully expects this to be the case again this year and for the performance delivered in the second half to be underpinned by the further benefits expected from the removal of lockdowns as well as the general return to a 'business as usual' economy," it says.



Plant Health Care PLC - agriculture products firm based in North Carolina - Revenue for six months to June 30 rises to USD3.5 million from USD3.1 million year-on-year, while pretax loss narrows to USD2.4 million from USD4.0 million. Administrative expenses drop to USD1.0 million from USD3.4 million. Harpin revenue increases by 26% to USD2.4 million. Looks ahead to strong second half and is confident in achieving "material revenue growth" in 2021. "The board has reviewed the company's cash position and concluded that we are able to achieve cash breakeven within existing cash resources. The board will take whatever steps are necessary, including by reducing cash expenses, to achieve that," Plant Health Care says.

Separately announces partnership with Nutrien Ag Solutions to launch its novel Saori soybean seed treatment in Brazil. "With multiple channels for putting Saori into the hands of Brazilian soybean growers, I am confident that Nutrien Ag Solutions is the very best partner for Saori. The launch of Saori is a key milestone for Plant Health Care and I look forward to seeing it used on millions of soybean hectares in the coming years," says Plant Health Care Chief Executive Chris Richards.



Petrel Resources PLC - hydrocarbon explorer with interests in Iraq and Ghana - Pretax loss in six months to June-end slims to EUR162,000 from EUR243,000 year-on-year, reflecting a fall in administrative expenses. Believes that Iraq "remains the biggest commercial opportunity in petroleum today" and the focus "is once again Iraq" for the business. Adds that it is funded for ongoing activities.



Pacific Horizon Investment Trust PLC - invests in Asia-Pacific region excluding Japan and Indian sub-continent - Net asset value per share stands at 777.15p at end of July, up sharply from 481.92p a year ago. Notes this 61% increase in NAV per share outperforms MSCI All Country Asia ex Japan Index's total return of 13% over the same period. Says majority of this performance was achieved in the first half of the financial year, but says second half was "possibly even more impressive" as the managers succeeded in avoiding the headwinds that caused a fall of 6.5% in the comparative index, instead generating a positive return of 11%. "There will always be uncertainty. Asia, however, appears to have weathered the impact of Covid-19 and is arguably in a more robust state than much of the developed world, having accumulated less debt and encountered less economic disruption," it says.



Hermes Pacific Investments PLC - investing company focused on investments in either quoted or unquoted investments - Makes no revenue in financial year to March 31 as it has no operating business, and pretax loss widens to GBP106,000 from GBP94,000. While administrative costs are stable, at GBP114,000 versus GBP113,000, finance income falls to GBP8,000 from GBP19,000. "We continue our focus to minimise our costs whilst we are looking for opportunities to deploy our cash," the company says.



Eagle Eye Solutions Group PLC - London-based marketing solutions provider - Revenue for financial year ended June 30 rises 12% to GBP22.8 million from GBP20.4 million, while it swings to pretax profit of GBP126,000 from loss of GBP332,000. Notes strong finish to year, with fourth quarter revenue growth of 27% resulting in good momentum into new year. "Overall, the benefits of the group's high quality SaaS business model can be seen in the robust financial performance in the year," it says, noting that recurring revenue accounts for around 74% of total revenue. Says trading in new financial year in line with board expectations and it is confident in achieving a "positive year of growth".



Quixant PLC - Cambridge, England-based technology for gaming and broadcast industries - Revenue for first half of 2021 rises 31% to USD36.5 million from USD27.9 million, while it swings to pretax profit of USD810,000 from loss of USD3.0 million year-on-year. Says Quixant Gaming revenue grows 55% to USD18.4 million and Densitron up 13% to USD18.1 million. Notes gross margin softens to 30% from 32% a year ago, reflecting component price inflation due to supply shortages. "While we have successfully increased our prices across almost all customers in the business through the first half of the year, the volatility in component prices has increased our cost of sales ahead of these price increases. We expect the margin pressure we are seeing to be temporary and is due to the widespread current electronic component shortages rather than a structural shift in our business," it says.



Parity Group PLC - data and technology-focused recruiter - Revenue falls to GBP26.0 million in six months to June-end from GBP29.9 million a year ago. Pretax loss widens to GBP491,000 from GBP383,000. Says the loss due primarily to one-off change management costs of GBP400,000. "It has been a tough start to the year for Parity. Whilst the increase in economic activity has helped to re-energise the recruitment industry, it has exposed the underinvestment in the group's core recruitment business, which has inevitably impacted our financial results," says Executive Chair Mark Braund. However, company believes it is well placed to stabilise in the second half and then return to growth and profitability in 2022.



Longboat Energy PLC - North Sea-focused exploration firm - Pretax loss for half-year to June 30 widens to GBP1.5 million from GBP1.1 million year-on-year, reflecting increase in administrative expenses. No revenue recorded for either period. Looks forward to drilling first exploration wells and expects busy period of "almost continuous drilling and frequent value catalysts" over the next 18 months. "Our plan remains to build Longboat in to a full-cycle, North Sea E&P company. We believe the momentum built by the initial acquisitions will enable us to take advantage of the increasing number of opportunities we are seeing in the market," it says.



Jersey Oil & Gas PLC - oil & gas company ‎focused on UK - Pretax loss for six months to end of June widens to GBP1.9 million from GBP1.2 million year-on-year. No revenue recorded in either period. Says period was busy for firm. "We were pleased to report a material increase in our technically recoverable resource estimates for the Buchan oil field following completion of extensive reservoir simulation modelling," company says. Cash position GBP17.1 million at end of June, up from GBP5.1 million at the end of December.



Trellus Health PLC - White Plains, New York-based digital health platform for complex chronic conditions - Pretax loss for six months to June-end USD1.6 million, widened from USD762,000 a year ago an reflecting higher administrative costs. No revenue reported in either period, as company is currently in its development phase. Floated in London in May. Says post half-year end, achieved its first key milestone by signing an agreement with the Mount Sinai Health System employee health plan. "We are very pleased with the rate of progress made since IPO and remain confident in continuing to deliver against key operational milestones in accordance with our plans. Our immediate strategy is focused on developing and enhancing the TrellusElevate platform, which was launched in July, and we have already hit an early key milestone by securing our first demonstration contract with the Mount Sinai Health system employee health plan," it says.



Pennant International Group PLC - London-based provider of aerospace training software - Revenue for six months to June 30 rises to GBP7.4 million from GBP6.3 million, while pretax loss slims to GBP1.7 million from GBP3.2 million. Says savings implemented during 2020 now being realised, with administration costs for period of GBP3.2 million versus GBP4.3 million a year ago. "The half year results mask a particularly encouraging performance from the group's IPS division, while the decisive actions taken last year to reduce costs resulted in significant savings during the First Half, positioning the group well for the second half and into 2022," says Chair John Ponsonby. On course to meet full-year expectations.



Savannah Resources PLC - London-based mineral resource development company - Pretax loss from continuing operations for first half of 2021 widens to GBP1.4 million from GBP1.1 million a year ago. Including discontinued operations, however, the loss narrows from GBP6.5 million a year prior. Highlights that cash balance stood at GBP9.7 million at June-end, up from GBP2.0 million at the end of 2020. "With the capital now in reserves, Savannah is well placed to press ahead with its work programmes at Mina do Barroso and its engagement with all stakeholders and relevant commercial groups. We also have sufficient capital available to meet our ongoing commitments in Mozambique," company says.



BiVictriX Therapeutics PLC - Macclesfield, England-based drug development company specialising in cancer treatments - Pretax loss for six months to June 30 widens to GBP451,000 from GBP167,000 year-on-year, reflecting higher operating expenses. Floated in London last month and says it has had "great start" to listed life. "Following admission, the company is in a good financial position and ready to progress key corporate development activities including the development of its lead candidate BVX001," it says. Separately on Wednesday announces the successful completion of two antibody discovery campaigns with IONTAS Ltd, aimed at supporting the optimisation of BiVictriX's lead development programme, BVX001. IONTAS successfully identifies novel human binders which target BiVictriX's proprietary "twin cancer antigens", as part of an ongoing collaboration with BiVictriX. "They will be further assessed in-house by BiVictriX through in vitro characterisation and testing to validate the efficacy and selectivity in human cell models and further optimise the company's lead programme, BVX001," it says.



By Lucy Heming; lucyheming@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2021 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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