Altitude Group (ALT): Corp | Avingtrans (AVG): Corp | LPA Group (LPA): Corp | Open Orphan (ORPH): Corp | PCI Pal (PCIP): Corp | Photo-Me (PHTM): Corp
Companies: ALT AVG PHTM PCIP LPA ORPH
Companies: LTG KRPZ KEFI ANIC NCCL LPA WHR BZT TILS MSMN
LPA Group (LPA): Corp Interim results: encouraging signs in difficult markets
Companies: LPA Group
Half-year results show some improvement in trading against a continuing difficult market backdrop. It reports a strong order book, with some significant orders gained over recent months in long-term projects. While management considers it likely that the second half will see further improvement, the phasing of customer projects, especially round its September year end, coupled with ongoing COVID related uncertainties makes guidance problematic currently, and as such our forecasts remain under review.
Bioventix (BVXP): Corp | K3 Business Technology (KBT): Corp | LPA Group (LPA): Corp | Robinson (RBN): Corp
Companies: BVXP KBT RBN LPA
Altitude Group (ALT): Corp Proposed disposal of ADP | Europa Oil & Gas (EOG): Corp Wressle economics highly robust | LPA Group (LPA): Corp COVID-19 update and Board appointments | Morses Club (MCL): Corp Substantial immediate upside opportunity in share price | Quixant (QXT): Corp Coronavirus delays audit sign-off for a week | Revolution Bars Group (RBG): Corp COVID-19 trading update | Synairgen (SNG): Corp COVID-19 Phase II trial to start imminently
Companies: ALT EOG QXT RBG SNG MCL LPA
The company has announced it has so far seen little undue impact from coronavirus, but it comments it is prudent to expect some impact on its transport and aerospace customer base. The AGM statement also highlights several new appointments to the Board that help rejuvenate the senior management team. The announcement also signals actions to mitigate the impact of coronavirus, including the suspension of the 2019 final dividend to conserve cash. We therefore reduce revenues by 10%, which results in a £0.5m reduction in PBT and EPS of 4.7p, down 40%. Our price target reduces from 156p to 125p, with longer-term value driven by the recovery in its order book, while the shares are already significantly lower due to current market weakness.
Avacta (AVCT): Corp TMAC – proof of concept for novel Affimer conjugate | LPA Group (LPA): Corp Full-year results: a year of recovery ahead | Sopheon (SPE): Corp Positive trading update
Companies: AVCT SPE LPA
Full-year results are slightly ahead of expectations, but highlight the challenging market conditions experienced in the last year. Momentum now looks to be recovering (boosted by a recent prestigious five-year framework agreement with Siemens) with a strong improvement in order intake. Production has already started to increase, with a good recovery in profits expected. We maintain our profit expectations, with a small increase in EPS to 8.0p. The rating currently looks compelling and the boost to confidence levels should be reflected in a higher valuation. We raise our price target from 131p to 156p, based on peer average valuations and offering significant upside to current levels in this recovery year. Scope for further contract wins could also be a potential catalyst for the shares.
dotDigital (DOTD): Corp Interim trading update | Elecosoft (ELCO): Corp FY 2019 earnings on track for growth forecast | eve Sleep (EVE): Corp FY19 pre-close; EBITDA loss/cash burn materially reduced | Hardide (HDD): Corp Placing proceeds to further upgrade equipment | LPA Group (LPA): Corp LED lighting contract win and trading update
Companies: DOTD ELCO HDD LPA EVE
Ahead of the group’s forthcoming FY results, it has announced that Q1 trading has seen a pick-up in activity and a solid performance. It has also announced that it has been awarded a contract with Siemens on a significant rolling stock order for the Austrian Railway. We maintain existing forecasts until next week. Today’s statement is encouraging and points to a recovery in the group’s fortunes after a challenging 2019.
Intention to float by Gemfields Group. No Capital Raise. Currently listed on JSE. (GML:JNB) at circa £122m. The Group's key producing assets, the Kagem emerald mine in Zambia (believed to be the world's single largest producing emerald mine) and the Montepuez ruby mine in Mozambique (one of the most significant recently discovered ruby deposits in the world), are both expected to have long mine-lives with potential for expansion. Also owns the Faberge brand. Due Valentines Day 2020.
Companies: PEN EAI SENS LPA PRM HDD BRD IGR CNC CNS
The Group has announced £4m of new contract wins, including train rolling stock contracts and a first export order for LED-based lighting for trams. However, trading in the current year has continued to be challenging, as previously indicated, with certain contracts now deferred and unlikely to be shipped in the current year. We therefore reduce our current year forecast, with a £0.3m profit reduction to £0.1m and EPS of 0.7p, though with increased factory loading and action already taken on the cost base we upgrade next year’s EPS by 9% to 7.8p. No change to the dividend is envisaged. While this is a short-term disappointment it does not alter our longer-term positive view of recovery prospects.
While the current year has seen some customer projects delayed longer than originally expected, there is good reason for next year to see some improvement. The recent uptick in order intake and growing order book suggests some recovery. Investment and new product development are assisting market share gains, while technology in electronics and LEDs continues to drive rail rolling stock upgrades. The shares trade at a low point in their fortunes, with scope to recover to previous levels. Our 131p price target is based on a target P/E of 18.2x for 2020.
Avacta (AVCT): Corp Manufacturing partner for first therapeutic selected | Best of the Best (BOTB): Corp Resilient FY19; more upgrades | LPA Group (LPA): Corp Interim results – Initiation of coverage | Savannah Resources (SAV): Corp Completion of acquisition | STM (STM): Corp Momentum beginning to build in the UK
Companies: AVCT BOTB SAV STM LPA
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A number of REITs have the ability to thrive in current market conditions and thereafter. Not only do they hold assets that will remain in strong demand, but they have focus and transparency. The leases and underlying rents are structured in a manner to provide long visibility, growth and security. Hardman & Co defined an investment universe of REITs that we considered provided security and “safer harbours”. We introduced this universe with our report published in March 2019: “Secure income” REITs – Safe Harbour Available. Here, we take forward the investment case and story. We point to six REITs, in particular, where we believe the risk/reward is the most attractive.
Companies: AGY ARBB ARIX BUR CMH CLIG DNL HAYD NSF PCA PIN PXC PHP RE/ RECI SCE SHED VTA
Successful businesses ‘never let a crisis go to waste’. Indeed since an otherwise strong Q1’20 was interrupted by COVID-19, Mpac has further streamlined operations, accelerated R&D and launched new remote equipment diagnostic/acceptance testing, virtual reality & other ‘Industry 4.0’ services.
RBG Holdings pre-close trading update to June 30th confirms a strong H1 performance for RBL, the Group’s law firm, with revenues up 36% like-for-like to c.£11.4m YoY. Convex, the CF boutique, understandably has faced COVID headwinds, with most of its H1 pipeline deferred indefinitely, whilst Litigation Finance continues to grow its pipeline and financing commitments on a longer term view. Due to continued uncertainty from COVID we withdraw our forecasts this morning, with a view to reinstating once more clarity on H1 outturn and momentum into H2 is available.
Companies: Rosenblatt Group
Resilient Trading Update
Companies: Macfarlane Group
The year-end trading update was encouraging, with expected results showing good YoY growth, modestly below but close to our earlier expectations. Trading has been resilient, particularly in safety critical areas such as its nuclear exposure, with some weakness being seen in oil & gas, where there is limited exposure. Two new contract wins in the nuclear sector have also been announced today. FY 2021 forecasts remain under review. With strong finances, the company is well positioned to maximise M&A opportunities, through its PIE strategy.
Revenue for FY 2020 is ahead of expectation and we adjust our forecast accordingly. Sales are growing at an impressive rate; >50% pa despite COVID-19 and the virus had no effect on the company’s ability to deliver projects with 23 new customers live in Q4. We note COVID concerns are causing some delay on contract decisions, and sales would have been even stronger but for that. These delays do lead to caution on FY 2021, and we ease back our forecasts on more prudent management guidance. However, with the recent £5m equity placing, PCIP has plenty of cash to continue to invest in rolling out its exciting secure payments proposition. This cloud-based solution can be deployed remotely and assists call centres in moving agents to WFH and still collect payments securely. The outlook remains very bright with continued rapid growth expected.
Companies: PCI Pal
The group has issued a trading update for the year ended 31 May 2020 highlighting an adjusted EBITDA of at least £11.5m which is close to the group’s original expectation, despite widespread disruption to operations in the second half. The statement notes ample liquidity headroom in excess of £10m with net debt (excluding IFRS 16 lease liabilities) reducing in H2 to £7.5m as planned. The Group’s order book and prospect pipeline remains strong overall and the update is accompanied by the announcement of two meaningful contract wins in the nuclear sector. A further significant positive development is the grant of outline planning permission for the conversion of the group’s 7 acre Hayward Tyler site in Luton into residential housing for up to 1000 dwellings. Whilst financial guidance for FY2021E remains withdrawn at this point due to on-going uncertainties around the impact of COVID-19, we see the group continuing to demonstrate good resilience, operating at close to normal levels, supported by exposure to multiple markets and a strong customer base that includes governments and their agents.
Caledonia's Q2 2020 production from its 64% owned Blanket mine in Zimbabwe was 13.5koz gold. This was an increase over the same period last year of 6.2%, leaving Caledonia with a first half production of 27.7koz – well ahead of this time last year (24.7koz) and on track to meet its 2020 full year guidance of 53-56koz (WHI etc. 55.5koz).
Spectra Systems Corporation is a provider of machine-readable high-speed banknote authentication, brand protection technologies and gaming security software. The company has announced that it has executed a new contract with a major world central bank to ‘enhance existing authentication sensors to detect a unique type of counterfeit notes'.
Companies: Spectra Systems Caledonia Mining Corporation Plc Com Shs Npv
Marlowe delivered a strong performance during FY20A, with +7% organic revenue growth, and improved Adj EBITDA margins. Integration of acquisitions is progressing well, and with receipt of c£40m gross proceeds, Marlowe is well placed to accelerate the consolidation of its markets. We leave our forecasts unchanged and reaffirm our Buy rating.
ECSC Group plc* (ECSC.L, 71.5p/£7.2m) | Trackwise Designs plc (TWD.L, 90.5p/£20.0m) | Transense Technologies plc (TRT.L, 59.5p/£9.7m)
Companies: ECSC Group Trackwise Designs
Scotland’s only quoted housebuilder recorded its highest ever weekly number of reservations following the reopening of its sales offices after the prolonged construction lockdown north of the border. As a result, Q1 2021 sales are expected to be “significantly higher” Y/Y, after the inevitable disruption caused by Covid. In this morning’s FY 2020 trading update, the Group also highlighted the widely reported trend across the housing market to larger homes with gardens, Springfield’s ‘sweet spot’ in our view.
Companies: Springfield Properties
Updating forecasts following 2019 results
Companies: Trackwise Designs
Strong H1 results, prospects good, investing in the future WEY's H1 results this morning reflect both the positive effect of proactive actions taken by the company last year and strong demand from the market at large. Sales up 43% YoY and PBTA of
£0.3m (2019: £0.1m) reflect increases across both sides of WEY's business and are accompanied by margin uplift (62% gross margin as against 56% last year). The company is a well-established leading supplier of online education, having built a 15-year track record of excellence in its sphere. Covering the half year ending on February 29th, the period of the results precedes the lockdown; however this morning's statement lays out the heightened demand for WEY's product which is an inevitable result of the new focus on remote working and online learning. WEY is plainly extremely well-placed to grow in the current environment, and it has made significant investments in educational quality and in marketing – in both cases including senior and wellrespected hires. The Covid-19 crisis has generated a new appreciation of online education from parents, pupils and educational authorities, who increasingly see this as a real, practical and highly effective substitute for traditional education, adding to the already strong demand across
WEY's brands. Our 30p-plus fair value assessment rests on the inherent opportunities and is also supported by the strong balance sheet (£6.6m of net cash, +£1.6m in the period).
Companies: Wey Education
Tipping point: Proven, revenue generating, now scaling
Brick and concrete products manufacturer Forterra has raised c. £55m gross in an equity placing in order to maintain its strong balance sheet and support the Group's continued investment programme. It was accompanied by, in our view, a reassuring trading statement which we believe is backed by yesterday’s brick industry data and comments from housebuilders, which suggest that demand has been recovering from its lockdown lows, before the PM’s promises to “build, build, build” housing and infrastructure.