AFC Energy boosted by Saudi Arabian agreement

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AFC Energy PLC (LON:AFC) is in demand after it announced a proposed exclusive agreement with a Saudi Arabian power specialist.

The company’s shares have climbed 4.99p or 7.76% to 69.29p as it signed a memorandum of understanding for Altaaqa Alternative Solutions, which operates one of the world’s largest rental fleets of mobile diesel generators, to distribute its hydrogen-based fuel cell systems.

AFC said the dealership would give it access to the emerging Saudi power market, already forecast to be one of the world’s largest producers of green hydrogen. The plan would be to focus first on Saudi Arabia and then broaden out to cover the rest of the Middle East & North Africa region.

2.31pm: Biomarket specialist among day’s biggest fallers

Biotech business Proteome Sciences PLC (LON:PRM) managed to eke out an increase in revenues and profits in the pandemic-hit year.

Full year revenues rose from £4.66mln to £4.75mln and after-tax profits from £0.15mln to £0.29mln. 

But the market is unimpressed, and its shares have slumped 16.83% or 0.85p to 4.2p. To be fair, they did jump sharply last week when the company said it expected full year profits of around £0.30mln, which turned out to be an accurate forecast.

It said pharaceutical research activity was at near-normal levels despite lockdowns, but the absence of on site meetings and trade shows hit its sales and marketing activities. It expects virtual marketing to be the main driver for at least the first half of this year.

It is also looking to grow the business with new collaborations and products, although much depends on the markets returning to more normal activity.

12.12pm: Online teaching group in £70m takeover

Wey Education PLC (LON.WEY) has chalked up a hefty rise after agreeing to a takeover bid from Inspired Education Online Ltd which values the business at more than £70m.

Inspired, which was founded in 2013 and owns 60 private pay schools across the world as well as an online business King’s College Online, is offering 47.5p a share in cash for Wey,an online education specialist. In the market Wey’s shares have jumped 14p or 43.08% to 46.5p.

The bidder has received commitments worth 53.21% of its target. In recommending the offer Wey’s directors said it provided certainty for shareholders “as against the inherent uncertainty of the delivery of future value that exists in any business.” 

Inspired’s chairman and founder Nadim Nsouli said: “Wey Education, which is providing a British curriculum education through its online live teaching and learning platform, will now be able to benefit from the support of a global schools group with leading educational experts, strong brand recognition, and premium physical facilities across the globe.”

10.50am: Oil company’s partner agrees to sell stake

Shares in Oilex Ltd (LON.OEX) have surged after the company came closer to settling a dispute over an Indian gas project which it has been trying to control for more than four years.

It has wanted to buy the 55% of the Cambay field it does not own since 2016 but it got into a spat with its partner – the state-backed Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Limited (GSPC) – over expense payments which at one point went to an Indian court.

But now it has announced that GSPC has approved the sale of the stake for US$2.2mln, as has the state government of Gujarat, giving Oilex 100% of the field. Completion of the deal will require the finalisation of a binding sales and purchase agreement, and finalisation of funding arrangements, both of which are expected to occur in the second quarter of 2021, it said. The sale also needs approval from the Indian government.

Once completed, the deal will allow the company to restart field work at the site, subject to getting the necessary funding.

Oilex’s managing director Joe Salomon said: “We are pleased that Oilex and GSPC have been able to work together to agree this outcome and in doing so a major milestone has been achieved by the company in the face of many challenges. The long-awaited resolution provides the company with a pathway to evaluate the significant gas resource potential identified at Cambay. Oilex and GSPC continue to work together to finalise past pending costs related to certain field costs and regulatory spending prior to 2018.”

The news has sent the company’s Aim-listed shares up 60.61% or 0.10p to 0.27p.

9.36am: Savoy show to be livestreamed 

Singer Alfie Boe is proving a hit with investors in 7Digital Group PLC (LON.7DIG).

The company’s joint venture eMusic Live has announced it will livestream a concert by Boe and friends from the Savoy in London on Easter Saturday.

The hour long concert wil also feature Gary Barlow, Amanda Holden, Freddie Fox and Jason Manford with some of the proceeds going to charity.

The company said: “A portion of each ticket sold will be donated to Hospitality Action, the UK hospitality industry’s benevolent charity, and The Connection at St. Martin’s, which supports thousands of homeless people to move away from sleeping on the streets.”

7Digital chief executive Paul Langworthy said: “With eMusic Live’s advanced monetisation tools, Alfie will be able to engage remotely with fans in new and exciting ways and generate maximum revenue for two very worthy causes.”

7Digital shares are up 0.05p or 3.57% at 1.45p.

8.37am: Oil group upbeat on trading and prospects

Victoria Oil &Gas PLC (LON.VOG)  has seen its shares gush higher after a positive update covering a range of issues.

It said its operations at the port city of Douala in Cameroon had not been affected by a small number of positive COVID-19 tests, with weekly gas production as expected and one customer returning after paying outstanding debt.

The company has also signed non-binding agreements with a potential buyer of its Russian interests, which has been fully impaired in its accounts. It has also started arbitration proceedings seeking a settlement from the Kazakhstan government. It said: “The dispute arises out of a series of actions and omissions by the Government and its courts which ultimately deprived VOG of the value of its investment in the Kemerkol oil field located in Atyrau Oblast.  After investing over US$35 million into the Kemerkol Field, Kazakhstan invalidated VOG’s rights to the Kemerkol Field, seized assets on site, and VOG was forced to suspend oil production in June 2008.”

There is more. It also issued a positive update on its Logbaba site, and said various preparations were underway at its Matanda licence.

Craig Howie as the company’s broker Shore Capital said: “We believe that the announcement of a transaction here {Matanda] could provide a very important potential catalyst in due course. In the meantime, we consider this to be a very encouraging update from VOG, which we believe is demonstrating great resilience under its management team led by chief executive Roy Kelly – we continue to see excellent potential as the company continues to capitalise on its dominant position in the Douala region, where we see significant opportunity.”

The company’s shares are 7.69% or 0.3p higher at 4.2p.

Also on the rise is Infrastrata PLC (LON.INFA), up 6.41% or 2.5p at 41.5p.

The infrastructure company, which owns the famous Harland & Wolff name, said revenues for the eight months to March were £6.5m, compared to £1.4m at the previous year end. 

Its strategy is to build the Harland business across five core markets – cruise and ferry, commercial fabrication, oil and gas, defence and renewables.

Chief executive John Wood said: “We believe that we have now built significant growth momentum over the past few months that will lead to large contract wins across the five core markets within which we operate.

“With the gradual lifting of lockdown restrictions, we anticipate larger spending patterns that will eventually lead to higher revenues across the second half of the calendar year.”

Proactive news headlines

Argo Blockchain PLC (LON:ARB) said it has engaged consultancy Guidehouse to research and advise on science-based solutions towards the company’s long-term strategy to eliminate its climate impact. 

Belvoir Group PLC (LON:BLV) is buying the owner of the Nicholas Humphreys estate agent and letting chain for £4mln.

FastForward Innovations Ltd (LON:FFWD) said it has taken part in the £14mln pre-IPO funding round for Northern Leaf, the Jersey-based medical cannabis group.

Cobra Resources PLC (LON:COBR) said analysis of the drilling at the Wudinna gold project in South Australia had identified a strike extension of mineralisation at the Clarke prospect.

Horizonte Minerals PLC (LON:HZM) (TSE:HZM) has hailed the achievement of “significant business and project level milestones” in 2020 as it updated investors on the status of its balance sheet and financing.

[email protected] Capital plc (LON:SYME) said gross origination of client companies increased by 13% in the first quarter from a year ago. The fintech firm’s client list at the end of March stood at 187, up from 82 a year earlier, with the value of the inventory on the system rising to €2.4bn from €1.22bn a year earlier and from €2.13bn at the end of 2020.

Base Resources Ltd (LON:BSE, ASX:BSE) completed a pre-feasibility study (Kwale North PFS) on the potential for the North Dune and Bumamani deposits to extend the mine life at its Kwale mineral sands operation in Kenya. The study concluded that it was not currently viable to mine all of these deposits mainly due to the low heavy mineral grade, high land acquisition costs and elevated slimes content and associated tailings disposal costs.

Pembridge Resources PLC (LON:PERE) said it has made the first payment towards the purchase of the Minto operations in the Yukon, Canada, under a deal inked in 2019.

4D pharma PLC (LON:DDD, NASDAQ:LBPS) hailed 2020 as a “transformational year” for the company. In its full-year results statement, the company listed the publication of the first proof-of-concept data for MRx0518 in last-line cancers and the journey towards a listing on NASDAQ as highlights of the year.

Great Western Mining Corp PLC (LON:GWMO) said drilling has started on its operations in Mineral County, Nevada to test a prospective copper target and is likely to be followed by a second hole on the same prospect.  

Westmount Energy Ltd (LON:WTE, OTCQB:WMELF) highlighted it is debt free as it announced the final repayment against convertible unsecured loan notes, which became due on March 31 2021.

Zephyr Energy PLC (LON:ZPHR) has completed the acquisition of non-operated working interests in producing and near-term production wells in the Bakken Formation in North Dakota, US.

TomCo Energy PLC (LON:TOM) told investors that the FEED (Front-End Engineering and Design) study for its oil sands project in Utah will be delayed by six weeks, but when it is complete it will be more robust.

Amur Minerals Corporation (LON:AMC) said that it has received its interest payment for the first-quarter of 2021 based on the US$4.67mln convertible loan note investment to Nathan River Resources (NRR) to resume production at the Roper Bar iron ore project in Australia’s Northern Territories.

Braveheart Investment Group plc (LON:BRH) announces that on 30 and 31 March 2021 Trevor Brown, a director and PDMR of the Company, sold a total of 2,219,189 shares at an average price of 74.77p per share. He now holds 5,424,099 ordinary shares, representing a 14.16% stake in the company.

Genel Energy PLC (LON:GENL) said it will hold its annual general meeting on Thursday, 6 May 2021, and has today posted its annual report for the past calendar year and forms of proxy. 

Tower Resources PLC (LON:TRP,) announced that it has made an annual award of over 88mln share options at an exercise price of 0.45 pence under its long-term incentive plan, and has also issued £30,000-worth of warrants at the same exercise price in lieu of fees to directors and to one of its contractors in respect of the second quarter of 2021.

Eden Research PLC (LON:EDEN) confirmed the grant of 10.5mln replacement options awarded under its revised long-term incentive plan to CEO Sean Smith and CFO Alex Abrey.

Trident Royalties PLC (LON:TRR, FSX:5KV) Adam Davidson and Martin Page, CEO and CFO of Trident, will provide a live presentation via the Investor Meet Company platform on Wednesday 7 April 2021 at 5pm BST. 

Incanthera plc (LON:INC) chairman Tim McCarthy and CEO Simon Ward will give a company presentation via a live webinar hosted by London South East on Tuesday 6 April 2021, including a presentation and a Q&A session.
 

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