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TRADING UPDATES: Chapel Down sales pop; Serabi output rises

Thu, 20th Jul 2023 20:06

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

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Chapel Down Group PLC - Tenterden, Kent-based sparkling wine maker - Net sales in first-half ended June 30 surge 21% to GBP8.4 million, from GBP6.9 million a year prior. Chapel Down adds: "Total wine volumes increased 6% to 732,000 with traditional method sparkling volumes up 32% to 428,000, reflecting the continued successful delivery of our premiumisation strategy." As well as volumes rising, prices increase 16%. Off-trade sales alone are up 25%. Off-trade refers to channels such as supermarkets and online stores, contrasting with on-trade, which includes bars and nightclubs. Chapel Down adds: "The group continues to trade strongly, and the board remains confident of a continuing strong performance in H2."

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Serabi Gold PLC - Brazil-focused gold mining and development company - Second quarter gold production totals 8,518 ounces, up 6.4% from first-quarter and rising 1.2% on-year. CEO Mike Hodgson says: "An excellent second quarter to follow the first quarter production of 8,005 ounces, keeps the company on course to meet its guidance for this year of between 33,500 to 35,000 ounces. The quarter saw improved grades coming from Palito, along with continued high grade development ore from Coringa."

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Beowulf Mining PLC - Sweden, Finland and Kosovo-focused mining company - Finnish unit Grafintec Oy completes first-stage of process design for a graphite anode materials plant at GigaVaasa, Finland. Process forms part of wider pre-feasibility study. Study confirms post-tax net present value, using a discount rate of 8%, of USD242 million. Study suggests plant capacity of 20,000 tonnes per year and an "initial operating period of 10 years with the potential to be longer". Annual earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of USD79 million expected. "The study confirms that the GAMP is technically and financially feasible and supports the progress of the project to the next stage of development, including coating testwork at laboratory and pilot plant scale in combination with optimisation of the process design. Further studies also include, but are not limited to, equipment selection, continued discussions and cooperation with technology partners, raw-material sourcing, engagement and pre-qualification testing with battery cell manufacturers," Beowulf adds.

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Xtract Resources PLC - Australia and Africa-focused resource, development and mining company - Completes metallurgical test work at Bushranger copper and gold project in Australia. Results suggest "significant upgrades to copper mineralisation in the pre-concentrated product" can be achieved, Executive Chair Colin Bird says.

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Jadestone Energy PLC - oil and gas production company focused on Asia-Pacific region - Leaves production, underlying costs and capital expenditure guidance unchanged. Says output in first-half falls 18% to around 12,300 barrels of oil equivalent per day, from 15,008 a year prior. Fall reflects shut-in of Montara until late-March. Half-year revenue declines 62% to USD86.7 million from USD225.6 million. Average realised oil price falls to USD86.2 a barrel, from USD109.5. Continues to expect annual underlying operating costs between USD180 million to USD210 million. Expects output between 13,500-17,000 boe per day, April to December inclusive. Still expects capex of USD110 million to USD140 million.

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Verici Dx PLC - Cardiff, Wales-based developer of clinical diagnostics for organ transplants - Gets compliance authorisation for operation of commercial clinical laboratory testing from an additional four US states, including all-important California. Now fully accredited in a total of 49 states. Verici adds: "Together with the CLIA certification previously obtained from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid, clinicians at transplant medical centres in these additional states are now enabled to order Verici Dx's transplant tests, expanding the company's commercial reach. California has consistently accounted for over 10% of the national US volume of kidney transplant procedures in each year since 1998 and has conducted the highest volume of transplants by any state each year over the same period."

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Acuity RM Group PLC - provider of risk management services said the customer - Wins three year contract worth GBP388,000, with an option to extend for a fourth year for a further GBP125,000. Deal is for use of Acuity's cyber threat-managing software platform, Stream. User is in "an organisation within the British government", Acuity adds.

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KRM22 PLC - London-based technology and software investment company - Hails "good progress" in six months ended June 30. Says annual recurring revenue tops GBP5.0 million for first time since float in 2018, rising from GBP4.1 million in the first half of 2022. Total revenue for the half-year increases roughly 25% to GBP2.4 million from GBP1.9 million.

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Pittards PLC - Yeovil, Somerset-based leather goods producer - Concludes talks with a trade investor who will invest GBP1 million through issue of 25.0 million new shares at four pence each. The investment is yet to be finalised, and Pittards says that the investor will up to a further GBP124,000 by way of zero coupon unsecured convertible loan notes, should they be unable to make the GBP1 million backing. The backing is subject to Pittards raising GBP1.2 million of additional capital, entering new bank facilities and passing fundraising resolutions at a general meeting. If it does not raise the capital, it will be unable to continue trading and will likely enter administration, it warns.

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Duke Royalty Ltd - Europe and North America-focused alternative capital solutions provider - Announces GBP2.8 million follow-on investment into existing royalty partner InTec Business Solutions Ltd. Will fund InTec's latest acquisition and settlement deferred consideration of a previous buy. "The financing increases Duke's total investment into InTec to GBP23.9 million. The investment terms will remain in line with Duke's previous follow-on investment into InTec, including the normal 6% annual adjustment factor," the firm says. InTec is buying managed IT services provider Sweethaven Computers Ltd.

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Oberon Investments Group PLC - investment management, wealth planning and corporate broking group - Strikes deal to acquire Nexus Investment Management Ltd, from current owner Nexus Central Management Services Ltd. The acquisition target is manager of the Nexus Investments Evergreen EIS Scale-Up Fund. Oberon will fund the deal through the issue of 7.5 million shares, worth a total GBP292,500 at current market price. Shares in Aquis-listed Oberon closed at 3.90 pence each on Thursday. "The acquisition will contribute a profit before tax after management expenses and admin expenses and Oberon is focused on providing a seamless transfer of investment management services to investors in the Nexus EIS Fund," Oberon Investments says. "The Nexus EIS Fund has a 15-company strong portfolio across Digital, Data, EdTech and Health which strengthens Oberon's offering to investors who wish to benefit from Enterprise Investment Scheme tax relief and companies seeking EIS investment."

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Litigation Capital Management Ltd - asset manager specialising in dispute financing solutions - Reports "positive development" on investment in Fund I portfolio. Says funded party awarded USD76.7 million settlement. Claim relates to "breach of a bilateral investment treaty and brought under the International Centre For Settlement Of Investment Disputes Convention". LCM adds: "LCM's funded party has succeeded in the claim. If the award is not subject to challenge and is not satisfied the dispute will move to an enforcement stage. We will assess any further funding requirements once the enforcement strategy has been finalised." LCM has invested USD4 million in this dispute to date. Company adds: "LCM's returns are calculated as a rising multiple of invested capital over time. As such we cannot calculate our overall return on this investment until it concludes. The investment however is no longer attended with liability and quantum risk as that has been decided. Final performance will be announced to the market after conclusion of the investment."

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GCP Asset Backed Income Fund Ltd - London-based UK asset backed loan investor - Net asset value per share at end of June amounts to 93.96 pence, down 1.2% from end of March. GCP puts this down to "increase in discount rates in response to the prevailing interest rate and credit spread environment". Company adds: "The board and investment manager remain focused on addressing the discount to NAV at which the company's shares trade. Since the start of 2023, the company has purchased 8.525 million of its own shares and over 16 million since the commencement of the buyback strategy, to help support the share price, providing liquidity for those looking to dispose of shares, along with NAV accretion for remaining holders." Says further new investment is secondary to repaying revolving credit facility, trimming debt and buying back stock.

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By Eric Cunha, Alliance News news editor

Comments and questions to newsroom@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2023 Alliance News Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

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