SMALL CAP MOVERS: IPOs set to continue into the winter after busy September, says City broker
A resurgence in IPOs is underway following the dearth of new listings seen during the coronavirus crisis.
Coppa Club and Tavolino owner Various Eateries this week announced plans to float on the junior market, hoping to raise up to £25million to capitalise on the crisis in the hospitality industry.
The founder is restaurant superstar Hugh Osmond, who grew Pizza Express from a small chain of 12 restaurants to a 367-strong estate at the turn of the millennium.
London has seen many fundraisings this year from listed companies as early pandemic rescue issues to strengthen balance sheets turned into opportunistic fundraisers during the summer
Meanwhile, Blue Star Capital’s investee Guild eSports, the esports team co-owned by David Beckham, is seeking a listing on the main market to fund recruitment of professional video gamers.
London has seen plenty of fundraisings this year from listed companies as early pandemic rescue issues to strengthen balance sheets turned into opportunistic fundraisers during the summer, particularly as the life sciences sector needed support for COVID-19 projects.
But after consultancy Elixirr launched the first ‘lockdown IPO’ in July, the market has made a decisive move to traditional growth capital according to finnCap. The broker adds we should expect more flotations this winter, as companies are attracted by a functional regulatory framework allowing them to raise capital with relative ease.
‘The equity capital markets have shown themselves to be a good place to be,’ said Christopher Raggett, co-head of corporate finance at the broker. ‘IPOs are looking more attractive.’
Looking at this week’s performance, the AIM All-Share rose 0.9 per cent to 955, under-performing the FTSE 100 index’s 3.8 per cent jump to 6,022.
Among the risers, project portfolio and performance management software firm i-nexus Global soared 75 per cent to 5p after boasting its sales pipeline was rebuilt to pre-coronavirus levels.
Elsewhere, recruiter Hydrogen Group climbed 43 per cent after revealing plans to go private and buy out shareholders at 40p a share.
Blue Star Capital’s investee Guild eSports, the esports team co-owned by David Beckham, is seeking a listing on the main market to fund recruitment of professional video gamers
Meanwhile, Wameja surged 36 per cent to 7p after agreeing a takeover by US payment colossus Mastercard for £96million. The pair are joint venture partners in the HomeSend global payment hub.
Amryt Pharma rose 34 per cent to 208p after posting strong results from studies of its gel for rare skin condition epidermolysis bullosa (EB) and it is now applying for speedy regulatory approval in both the US and EU.
Remaining in the biotech space, Redx Pharma jumped 18 per cent to 65p after unveiling a new collaboration with US company Jazz Pharmaceuticals to discover and develop two targeted cancer therapies.
Moving on, driver monitoring technology firm Seeing Machines shot up 28 per cent to 4p after signing an initial deal with a global semiconductor company to license its Occula Neural Processing Unit.
Turning to the fallers, Phimedix slumped 78 per cent to 0.9p after announcing it has until September 14 to instigate a reverse takeover, otherwise shares will be suspended. The cash shell also saw serial pharma and biotech entrepreneur Ali Mortazavi cut his stake to 10.72 per cent from 13.5 per cent.
Shares in Amryt Pharma and Redx Pharma experienced major jumps in value this week
In the oil sector, Hurricane Energy tumbled 37 per cent to 3p after admitting its offshore UK Lancaster field is more complex than previously thought and needs more work to assess reservoir performance.
Explorer Baron Oil shed 24 per cent to 0.08p after interim losses widened.
Peer Upland Resources slipped 14 per cent to 0.7p after chief executive Chris Pitman relinquished his role so the firm can now focus on sourcing and developing new business opportunities.
Commercial energy and sustainability advisor Inspired Energy shed 10 per cent to 14p after profits for the half-year dropped 41 per cent to £1.42million due to coronavirus restrictions hitting its corporate energy consumption.
Finally, maritime communications specialist SRT Marine Systems sank 7 per cent to 38p after swinging to a £6.9million loss in the year to March mostly due to a £3.9million write-down of an existing contract in the Middle East.