Online gaming group Betfair (BET) bounds 32p higher to £10.62 on well-received interim results. Benefiting from its focus on regulated betting jurisdictions and flagging strong new customer acquisitions, the £1.1 billion cap reports a 56% surge in underlying taxable profits to £32.5 million. One of a number of listed businesses poised to capitalise on pent-up demand in the USA, Betfair also pleases by raising the shareholder payout 50% to 6p.
Oil services firm Petrofac (PFC) slips 2.8% to £11.99 as the market gives an uncertain response to a memorandum of understanding with the state-owned Nigerian Petroleum Development Company. The MOU will allow the two parties to explore options including funding, technical support, training services and asset development.
Elsewhere, half-year results from IT systems supplier Micro Focus (MCRO) are largely as expected but the market is pleasantly surprised by management's increasing confidence in a return to growth. Raising its full-year top line projections to 3% to 6% pushes the shares 19.5p higher to 833p.
Russian-focussed exhibitions play ITE (ITE) rises 4.4% in early trade to 308p as the market is inspired by the better-than-expected numbers and bullish outlook statement contained within this morning’s finals. We look at the stock in detail here.
The pubs industry is enjoying robust trade, as demonstrated by strong interim figures served up by Greene King (GNK). Profit-taking possibly accounts for a 12p share price reverse to 870p, as the £1.9 billion cap delivers news of strong cashflow, earnings and dividend growth as well as brisk current trading with like-for-like sales up 3.5% for the first 30 weeks of the financial year.
Despite paying a dividend for the first time since 2001, Stockport-based specialist packaging firm API (API:AIM) falls 3.1% to 77p as first half numbers reveal a 28% year-on-year decline in pre-tax profits to £2.6 million. The company says the weaker interims should not prevent results for the 12 months to 31 March 2014 being ahead of the previous financial year.
Sugar distributor-to-bakery ingredients group Real Good Food (RGD:AIM) sours 14.2% to 59p as half-year figures disappoint. The £47.5 million cap's sales fall 6% to £130.1 million on lower sugar volumes while profits are impacted by investment spend.
A 23% hike in half-year revenues continues to drive upward momentum for cyber security specialist Accumuli (ACM:AIM). The shares rally more than 6% to 23.5p having been bolstered yesterday by the company's Eqalis analytics acquisition.
Record numbers from Sheffield-based engineer Pressure Technologies (PRES:AIM) kick the shares on 5.4% to 404p with pre-tax profits up 61.1% year-on-year at £2.9 million. The results for the 12 months to end-September also reveal net cash of £4 million and the group, whose products include gas cylinders for oil rigs and components used in valves, signals it is on the lookout for acquisitions.
NFC technology developer Proxama (PROX:AIM) plunges 38% to 2.62p as the market feels the sting of a £8.6 million cash call. Priced at a 40% discount to yesterday's 4.25p close, and well below its 4p IPO level in August, the company hopes to drive geographic expansion with the extra cash.