Source - Alliance News

The following is a round-up of updates by London-listed companies, issued on Thursday and not separately reported by Alliance News:


Portmeirion Group PLC - Stoke-on-Trent, England-based pottery company - Revenue for 2021 rises to £106.0 million from £87.9 million in 2020, topping 2019’s pre-pandemic level of £92.8 million. Returns to pretax profit of £6.0 million after loss of £232,000 in 2020 and restores full-year dividend, at 13.00p. Says fourth quarter seasonal trading ‘excellent’ despite supply chain inflation and disruption. ‘We remain cognisant of ongoing economic uncertainty, in particular the challenges to the consumer of the rising costs of living including energy and fuel costs, and the ongoing impact of the war in Ukraine...However, we believe our investments in our brands, digital and online presence and increasingly diversified sales channels and geography will enable us to more than offset the afore-mentioned challenges and continue to grow in 2022 and over the coming years,’ company says.


Empresaria Group PLC - Crawley, West Sussex-based specialist staffing - Revenue for 2021 grows 1% to £258.4 million from £256.5 million in 2020, and firm swings to pretax profit of £6.0 million from loss of £2.0 million. Net fee income rises 10% to £59.5 million. Says demand returned in most markets as year progressed. To propose dividend of 1.2p for year, up 20%. ‘In 2021 the group moved back into growth mode, while investing in our operations. This investment will continue into 2022 with plans to grow our sales and recruitment teams in markets and sectors where we see strong opportunities for growth. The benefits from these investments will become apparent as we move through 2022 and we look forward to the year ahead with optimism,’ company says.


Ceres Power Holdings PLC - Horsham, England-based fuel cell and electrochemical technology firm - Revenue for calendar year 2021 comes in at £30.8 million, just below the £31.7 million reported for the 18 months to the end of 2020. Pretax loss £23.4 million versus £17.3 million. On comparative basis, revenue for calendar year 2021 rises to £30.8 million from £21.7 million in calendar year 2020, and pretax loss widens to £23.4 million from £14.5 million. Says strong top-line growth to continue into 2022. ‘We are planning to significantly increase our investments in R&D and capital investment in 2022 to drive Ceres’ future growth including electrolysis and new application capabilities in line with our strategy,’ firm says.


National World PLC - UK newspaper industry investor and owner of JPIMedia Publishing - Revenue for financial year ended January 1 £86.0 million, versus nil the year before, while it swings to pretax profit of £1.2 million from loss of £1.1 million. This is first full year since acquisition of JPIMedia Publishing Ltd and its subsidiaries. Says performance robust despite challenging trading environment due to pandemic and inflationary pressures. Is encouraged by good start to new year though says there is some uncertainty in trading backdrop due to cost pressures, in particular newsprint and printing costs, and the Ukraine war. ‘Revenue in January and February 2022 was up 5.6% year on year with strong digital growth of 48%, partially offset by print revenue which is broadly in line with 2021. We are encouraged by the steady improvement in print and digital advertising trends as we recover from the pandemic and against weaker comparatives,’ it says.


PensionBee Group PLC - London-based pension management app - Revenue for 2021 doubles to £12.8 million from £6.3 million, though pretax loss widens to £25.0 million from £13.5 million. Advertising & marketing costs rise, as do employee benefits expenses and ’other’ expenses. Assets under administration stand at £2.59 billion at end of 2021, up 91% from £1.36 billion at end of 2020. Reiterates medium-term guidance given at IPO, and also says revenue to be in excess of £20 million in 2022 alongside further margin improvement. This should enable the company to reach adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and marketing profitability by December 2022, assuming relative market stability across the year.


Tern PLC - investor focused on the internet of things - Net asset value per share grows to 9.2p at end of 2021 from 7.3p at end of 2020. Says network of companies delivered aggregate revenue growth of 47%, picking up from 18% in 2020. Tern’s pretax profit jumps to £4.6 million from £803,891 in 2020. ‘Having received new capital to fund their disruptive ambitions, we believe we will see significant further growth in employment across the companies in our network to aid in the execution of our plans to expand,’ it says.


Frontier IP Group PLC - London-based intellectual property commercialisation company - Pretax profit jumps to £10.3 million in six months to December 31 from £3.0 million a year before, driven by £11.9 million unrealised profit on revaluation of investments, versus just £4.0 million a year ago. Says results are ahead of management expectations. ‘The growth in fair value and unrealised profit on revaluation of investments demonstrates our distinctive business model and innovative approach to commercialising intellectual property continues to deliver,’ says Chief Executive Neil Crabb.


Caledonia Mining Corp PLC - Jersey, UK-based gold producer with operations in Zimbabwe - Revenue in 2021 grows to $121.3 million from $100.0 million in 2020, though pretax profit dips to $38.0 million from $40.4 million. Production costs rise to $53.1 million from $43.7 million. Says 67,476 ounces of gold produced in the year, up from 57,899 in 2020, and expects production of between 73,000 and 80,000 ounces in 2022. Total dividend for year 50 cents, up 49% on 2020.


AVI Japan Opportunity Trust PLC - invests in Japanese small and mid-cap equities - Net asset value total return for 2021 12%, outperforming benchmark, the MSCI Japan Small Cap Index, which falls 1.4%. Net asset value per share at December 31 is 120.87p, up from 108.90p a year before. Says 2021 was ‘excellent’ year for investment strategy. ‘The performance over 2021 was driven strongly by two privatisation events, and while it is hard to predict the timing, we would not be surprised if we saw a similar number in 2022. Having suffered from a valuation headwind in 2021 and with a busy year of engagement ahead, we believe the portfolio is well positioned for continued strong performance,’ it says.


Digital 9 Infrastructure PLC - London-based digital infrastructure investor - Net asset value per share 104.62p at end of 2021, up from 103.34p at end of June. NAV ends 2021 at £755.9 million, up from £482.3 million in June. Firm started trading in London in March last year. ‘In the 12 months since the company’s IPO in March 2021, we have been busy implementing our strategy of investing into a range of Digital Infrastructure investments which provide key infrastructure for global data transfer and data storage and support global digital communication,’ says Chair Jack Waters.


Tribal Group PLC - Bristol, England education software and services - Revenue for 2021 rises to £81.1 million from £73.0 million in 2020 and annual recurring revenue committed at year-end increased 7% to £50.3 million. Pretax profit edges up to £8.6 million from £8.5 million. Says firm has traded in line with expectations since start of new financial with continued positive sales momentum. ‘While cognisant of inflationary cost pressures, the board remains confident in delivering results for 2022 in line with current expectations,’ company says.


Mpac Group PLC - Coventry, England-based packaging company - Revenue for 2021 rises 13% to £94.3 million from £83.7 million in 2020, with pretax profit jumping to £8.2 million from £2.9 million. ‘2021 has been a very successful year for Mpac in which we continued to make substantial progress with our strategic plans and have delivered order intake, margin and revenue growth, an improved return on sales, growth in underlying profit before tax and a significantly higher closing order book,’ firm says. Order intake £117.9 million in 2021, contributing to closing order book of £78.4 million, up from £55.5 million the year before.


Gem Diamonds Ltd - Lesotho and Botswana-focused diamond miner - Revenue for 2021 grows to $201.9 million from $189.6 million in 2020, with pretax profit rising to $46.7 million from $38.3 million. Says ‘robust’ global demand for its large high-value diamonds resulted in a ‘solid’ financial performance. Recovered 115,335 carats at Letseng, up from 100,780 in 2020. Proposes dividend of 2.7 cents per share. ‘The continuing recovery of the diamond market in 2021 was evidenced by the robust prices achieved for Letseng’s large, high-value diamonds and there was also a significant improvement in the prices achieved for smaller diamonds. This resulted in positive cash flows and allowed Gem Diamonds to end the year in a strong financial position,’ says Chief Executive


TransGlobe Energy Corp - Calgary, Canada-based oil exploration and production company - 2021 sales averaged 13,478 barrels of oil equivalent per day, with an average realised price of $58.79 per barrel. Production averaged 12,854 barrels per day. Revenue for 2021 rises to $169.0 million from $115.4 million, and swings to net earnings of $40.3 million from loss of $77.4 million the year before. Into new year, says January 2022 average production was 12,291 barrels a day and February 12,392 barrels a day.


IOG PLC - London-based gas and infrastructure operator with projects in the North Sea - Pretax loss for 2021 narrows to £4.3 million from £19.3 million in 2020. Impairment of oil and gas properties slims to £865,000 from £12.6 million. Cash balance at end of year £34.7 million, down from £80.4 million at end of 2020. Says 2022 will be ‘pivotal’ year. ‘Delivering Southwark First Gas is important not just in a Phase 1 context but as the gateway to further phases within our broader area plan. Another key objective this year is FID on Nailsworth, which is expected to be exported via Southwark,’ it says.


Orcadian Energy PLC - North Sea focused oil and gas development company - Pretax loss £864,376 in six months to December 31, widened from £154,033 a year before. No revenue generated in either period. Widened loss reflects higher administrative expenses and listing costs of £325,449, an expense not booked in the 2020 period. Firm listed on AIM in July. Says first half as a quoted company has been ‘extraordinarily busy’ and says it has ‘exciting’ year ahead in taking forward the Pilot development project along with other discoveries and prospects.


GreenRoc Mining PLC - miner with projects in Greenland - Posts pretax loss of £306,000 for period March 17 to November 30. Company listed on AIM in September, a spin-off of Alba Mineral Resources PLC’s Greenland mining assets. ‘Our goal for our key assets, Amitsoq and TBS, is to complete feasibility and environmental and social impact assessments as expeditiously as possible so that we can apply to the Greenland Government for mining licences. As such, we intend to commence ESIA work at TBS shortly and to complete the field work component of that exercise during the coming summer month,’ company says. Alba, which holds 54% stake in GreenRoc, notes the results. Alba’s results for the financial year ended November 30 will be announced ‘in due course’ following completion of audit.


Rainbow Rare Earths Ltd - rare earth element mining in Burundi, East Africa - Pretax loss for six months to end of December $2.1 million, widened from $890,000 a year before. Records no revenue in period, versus $527,00 a year before. Administration expenses rise to $1.9 million from $829,000. ‘We have reached an important stage at Phalaborwa following the recent test work carried out and are working hard to explore all the optimisation opportunities and define the optimised process flow sheet. With the right team in place, I believe we are in a strong position to move forward and realise the full value of this exciting asset for our stakeholders,’ says Chief Executive George Bennett.


Quarto Group Inc - London-based illustrated book publisher - Revenue for 2021 rises to $151.5 million from $126.9 million, and pretax profit more than doubles to $14.2 million from $6.6 million. Firm says results driven by improved trading and reduced finance costs. Says it is in good financial position and has strong list of new titles for publication in 2022. ‘During 2021 the business was faced with multiple lockdowns in various countries around the world but, even when physical bookstores were closed, consumer support for books remained strong and they continued to source books from on-line retailers and, through the grocery sector which remained open,’ says Chief Executive Alison Goff.


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