Three different parties have got British machine gun manufacturer Manroy (MAN:AIM) in their sights, sending the small cap's shares up 48% to 82.9p. It confirmed preliminary takeover talks with Belgium's Herstal, Italy's Beretta and Nevada-based US Ordnance. The announcement triggers a formal takeover offer period, meaning the potential bidders have until the end of Christmas Eve to announce an intention to make a firm offer or walk away.
The market is pleased with growth in both sales and margins from Mitchells & Butlers (MAB) which advances 6% to 414.4p. Yet it is not enough to reinstate the dividend. We take a closer look at the numbers in a news analysis here.
Half-year results are a mixed bag from banknote printer De La Rue (DLAR). Operating profits are up but sales are down which means that full-year guidance isn't changed. The markets are suffering from excess production capacity so many analysts are sitting on the fence with 'hold' ratings. Investors today are more bullish, bidding up the shares with a 9.7% rise to 918p.
Branded soft drinks business Britvic (BVIC) moves 4.8% higher to 636p on better-than-expected full-year results including strong cash generation and reduced net debt. The Robinsons-to-Tango maker's adjusted pre-tax profits froth up 28% to £111 million and Britvic flags a positive start to the first quarter.
Half-year results from equipment rental group VP (VP.) are ahead of expectations, prompting a 5.3% rise in the share price to 530.5p. Analysts upgrade their forecasts for the next three years ahead. We've highlighted the group's potential several times over the past few years including a Griller interview with management in October 2012, saying to buy at 324p (see pages 42-43 on this pdf), and we looked at full-year results in June 2013.
Fellow support services group Renew (RNWH:AIM) also impresses with its results, triggering a 6.6% rise in the share price to 165.75p. That means the shares have more than doubled this year. We looked at the stock in detail three months ago. You can read that story here.
Cambria Automobiles (CAMB:AIM), the second biggest Aston Martin dealer in the world, motors 5.62% higher to 47p on strong full-year results showing profits up 32% to a forecast-busting £4.1 million. Amid buoyant market conditions, the buy-and-build motor trader enjoyed 19.5% year-on-year growth in new vehicle revenues and reports performance ahead of plan in the opening two months of the new fiscal year.
North Sea oil firm Independent Oil & Gas (IOG:AIM) gains 8.6% to 27.7p as a private equity-backed investor is buying out financially distressed joint venture partner ATP. The latter's parent company is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and, given the acquirer Alpha Petroleum is on board with its plans, completion of this deal should allow Independent to advance appraisal drilling on its Blythe and Skipper fields.
Engineer and foundry operator Chamberlin (CMH:AIM) slumps 7% to 80p as it reports a £1.2 million first half pre-tax loss (previewed here) thanks to issues at Scunthorpe and Leicester foundries. The new management team, which includes chief executive officer Kevin Nolan, tells Shares it expects to update on a turnaround plan in February.
AIM-quoted Mycelx (MYXR), which has a patented technique for separating hydrocarbons from waste water, gains 3.9% to 535p as it announces two new leasings of its technology to major oil companies. We last wrote on the stock here.
Indoor/outdoor geo-location software supplier Ubisense (UBI:AIM) signs a strategic deal in Asia that promises to fling open the doors to the Japanese car market for its 'smart factory' suite. The market bids the shares 3.4% higher to 226p, clearly seeing the scope for future installations.
It's going to be a hard second half slog for marine navigation kit supplier Software Radio Technology (SRT:AIM) given the 9% fall in interim revenues to £3.2 million. The market doesn't like its chances of hitting analysts' £15 million sales forecast by March, knocking the shares 12% down to 29p.
Online and mobile sales channel expert MoPowered, the engine behind the Beeb's online shop, is the latest 'techy' to reveal plans to list. It is seeking £4 million via an Aim IPO to drive sales and marketing.
ACM Shipping (ACMG) falls 4% despite the shipping services specialist revealing a 4.1% increase in revenue to £12.7 million for the six months to 30 September.
Scapa's (SCPA:AIM) half-year report reveals a 20.8% increase in pre-tax profit to £5.8 million on the back of an 8.1% rise in revenue to £111.6 million. Shares in the manufacturer of adhesive tapes and films for automotive, medical, and industrial applications slip 3.5% to 89.75p.
Healthcare real estate investment trust Assura (AGR) rises 3.2% to 39.2p on half-year results. The dividend is up 49% to 1.8p per share and pre-tax profits soar by 114% to £12.2 million. The value of its portfolio stands at £651 million.
Oxford Pharmascience (OXP) improves 1.2% to 4p as its launches a sugar free version of its calcium and vitamin D chew in Brazil. This new version of Inellare is being launched by local partner Aché Pharmaceuticos after it was approved by the National Association of Diabetes Care.