CPPGroup takes guarded view after Indian lockdown hits trading

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CPPGroup PLC (LON:CPP) eased 4.5% to 80p after it issued a “guarded” trading update.


The provider of personal protection and insurance products and services said it saw a sharp reduction in new business activity in India, its largest market, during April and May as the company entered a national lockdown.


The company said it is sensible at this point to take a guarded view about the outlook for the remainder of the year given the dynamic nature of the trading background.


2.45pm: Smartspace Software looking forward to “back to the office” trend


Smartspace Software PLC (LON:SMRT) jumped 10% to 181p after it announced five new reseller agreements.


The company, which develops software for “smart buildings”, said the newly announced agreements are for the company’s Space Connect workspace management solution.


“We have received encouraging feedback from these new partners, all experiencing similar increased demand for agile work space optimisation offerings from their own customers and we are now actively engaged with them on their first potential deals. Our value proposition of speed of deployment, ease-of-configuration and competitive pricing, will provide our partners with a compelling workplace optimisation offering for their clients,” said Matt Pope, the managing director of Space Connect.


1.50pm: Quiz reports better trading,


Quiz Group PLC (LON:QUIZ) shares are one of the biggest risers on Monday afternoon, up 26.5% to 12.35p, after a curate’s egg of a trading update from the clothing retailer.


Despite demand for what it calls its “trademark dressy and occasion wear” being trampled by the various pandemic restrictions on social activities and events, Quiz reported sales of GBP17.3mln for the three month to the end of June.


Directors said this was consistent with their expectations and was GBP13.1mln higher than seen for the same period last year during the first UK lockdown when all its stores and concessions were closes.


With its UK outlets reopening through the first month of the period, by the end of June it had 61 stores and 45 concessions operating, compared to 74 and 143 respectively a year earlier.


With online sales making up GBP6.4mln of the total, the group said its “continues to focus on identifying and delivering new opportunities to profitably grow revenues through its own website and store network, as well as by working with new partners appropriate for the QUIZ brand”, while also looking forward to the further relaxation of restrictions on social activities which it believes will result in “increased demand [for] QUIZ’s ranges which have traditionally provided popular options for social events and celebrations”.


12.50pm: GSTechnologies reveals pandemic toll


GSTechnologies Ltd (LON:GST) dived 14% to 1.1p after its full-year results revealed how badly the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the business.


The information and communication technology infrastructure solutions provider saw sales in the year to the end of March to GBP2.83mln from US$4.53mln the year before. ,


The loss before tax almost doubled to US$495,000 from US$255,000 the previous year.


11.50am: ULS Technology’s losses double as it pours money into development of its DigitalMove platform


ULS Technology PLC (LON:ULS) fell 12% to 75.6p after underlying earnings (EBITDA) all but disappeared in the year to the end of March.


The company, which is focused on investing in its digital platform aimed at revolutionising home moving and ownership saw underlyng EBITDA crash to GBP0.4mln from GBP3.5mln on revenue that fell to GBP16.9mln from GBP20.7mln as the pandemic took its toll on the business.


The company made a loss before tax of GBP2.39mln versus a profit the year before of GBP2.12mln after exceptional administration expenses of GBP1.46mln as it poured money into the development of its DigitalMove platform.


10.55am: Secure Trust raises full-year expectations


Secure Trust Bank PLC (LON:STB) jumped 6.6% to 1,108.75p after it raised profit expectations for the current year.


The bank said the positive trends seen in the first quarter of 2021 had continued into the second quarter, giving good reason to expect that impairment provisions this year will be significantly lower than was the case last year.


The board considers current market expectations for 2021 are an average profit before tax of around GBP29.5mln within a range from circa GBP26.4mln to GBP36.8mln; Securte Trust said it expects the full-year profit is likely to be towards the top end of that range.


9.40am: Westminster adds another London tourist attraction to its guardian gig list


Westminster Group PLC (LON:WSG) shares, up 4.5% at 6.06p, were standing to full attention after the security services provider won a prestigious gig at the Tower of London.


Westminster has been contracted to provide professional security services to the pedestrian and vehicular entrances of the world-famous fortress.


“Following other significant contract wins such as the Palace of Westminster, home of the UK Parliament, and recent long-term multi-million-dollar contract wins in Central and West Africa, this latest contract award demonstrates we have the reputation, skills and resources to secure and deliver high profile contracts around the world,” said Peter Fowler, the chief executive of Westminster Group.


9.05am: Mobile Streams the top riser after bagging major contract; Good Energy spurns bid approach


Mobile Streams PLC (LON:MOS), up 12% at 0.285p, was the top riser in London on Monday morning on the back of a major contract win.


The mobile content and data intelligence company said Tappit Technologies has signed up to Mobile Streams’ Streams data platform for four years in a contract that is worth up to GBP480,000.


It will increase Streams’ revenue to an estimated GBP35,000 per month, an increase of about 300% since December.


Good Energy Group Plc (LON:GOOD) was on a charge, rising 9.8% to 337.5p following a bid approach from its major shareholder, Etrocity Group Limited.


Etrocity holds around 25.1% of Good Energy and has made three indicative offers for the company, the latest of which was pitched at 340p per share in cash.


The board of Good Energy rejected the indicative offer.

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