Source - Alliance News

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


Gusbourne PLC - Ashford, Kent-based sparkling wine maker - Revenue in 2023 amounts to £7.7 million, up 12% from £6.9 million in 2022. Net revenue, which excludes excise duties, improves to £7.1 million from £6.2 million. Pretax loss widens to £3.0 million from £2.6 million. Administrative expenses rise 10% to £6.1 million and finance expenses jump to £1.6 million from £496,000. Chair Jim Ormonde says: ‘While the macro-economic outlook in the UK remains uncertain with consumer confidence still fragile, the board remains confident in the future success of Gusbourne, who are well positioned as a leading light in the rapidly growing English fine wine production market. We expect to continue seeing good momentum in our D2C, Corporate, Global Travel Retail and International channels, while trade sales in the UK are likely to remain cautious in the short-term. We have all the key ingredients in place for long-term success with great product, great distribution, and a great team. I very much look forward to another exciting year ahead of targeting revenue growth and adjusted Ebitda breakeven.’


Eneraqua Technologies PLC - energy and water efficiency solutions provider - Says revenue in year to January 31 falls 2.3% to £53.8 million from £55.1 million the year prior. Swings to pretax loss of £7.9 million from profit of £9.9 million. Cost of sales increase 30% to £41.6 million and administrative expenses rise 40% to £17.9 million from £12.8 million. It describes the financial year as ‘one of’ its most difficult yet. Looking ahead, it cautions: ‘Local authority domestic Energy clients continue to see impacts of inflation affecting budgets and as a result a return to normal levels is not anticipated until FY26.’ However, non-domestic energy sector projects ‘are an exciting new growth area for the group’.


Metals Exploration PLC - Philippines-focused gold producer - Gold production in 2023 rises to 85,194 ounces, from 72,537 in 2022. Sales revenue jumps 34% to $166.7 million from $124.4 million. Pretax profit jumps to $119.6 million from $8.7 million. Sets production outlook for Runruno mine of 74,000-80,000 ounces in 2024.


Alien Metals Ltd - Australia-focused minerals exploration and development company - Reports pretax loss of $3.7 million in 2023, widening from $2.4 million in 2022. Administration expenses rise 15% to $2.7 million from $2.4 million. Reports ’other losses’ of $1.2 million, against none in 2022. These losses included impairments of exploration and evaluation assets totalling $794,000. Alien Metals adds: ‘Looking ahead, we remain focused on delivering long-term value for our shareholders by continuing to advance our exploration and development projects. We will continue to prioritise safety, sustainability, and good governance in all our operations, as we work to create value for all our stakeholders.’


Cornish Metals Inc - mineral exploration company with projects in the UK and North America - Loss in first-quarter widens to C$2.6 million, around £1.5 million, from C$206,802 a year prior. Reports no revenue, unchanged from a year prior. Total operating expenses jump to C$2.8 million from C$924,120.


Block Energy PLC - Resource exploration and production company focused on Georgia - Revenue in 2023 rises 1.3% to $8.4 million from $8.3 million. Pretax loss widens to $2.2 million from $1.6 million. Reports $2.2 million impairment on non-core oil and gas assets, hurting bottom-line. CEO Paul Haywood says: ‘2023 stands out as a pivotal year for our company. Bolstered by solid production, a focus on costs and a supportive oil price environment, we have seen a strong improvement in our financial position. We were also able to focus on advancing our high impact projects, in particular Project III, and the generation and independent verification of a carbon capture storage project.’


Shires Income PLC - London-based investment trust - Net asset value per share at March 31 year-end falls 0.7% to 256.00 pence from 257.92p the year prior. Lifts dividend by 1.4% to 14.40p from 14.20p. Reports Net asset value total return of 5.1%, shy of 8.4% return from benchmark index. ‘Although lagging the market return, the performance for the year is in line with what we would expect, given the defensive and income focused nature of the portfolio, and delivered the company’s objective of providing shareholders with a high level of income, together with the potential for growth of both income and capital,’ Shires Income says.


SuperSeed Capital Ltd - venture capital fund which backs early-stage technology companies - Net asset value per at December 31 year-end improves 16% to £1.13, from £0.97 a year prior. Says ‘pleased’ with performance in 2023. SuperSeed says: ‘As we look to 2024, we continue to see advances in AI providing great investment opportunities across the software landscape. Thus, the strategy for the year ahead is unchanged: SuperSeed looks to back the best technical founders and support them in building successful global software companies. The fund continues to perform to strategy with existing portfolio companies growing well and exciting new companies being added to the portfolio. This positions the fund strongly to capitalise on the continued opportunity in AI in 2024 and beyond.’


Argo Blockchain PLC - London-based cryptocurrency miner - Revenue in first-quarter of 2024 rises 50% to $16.8 million from $11.3 million. Pretax loss narrows to $2.8 million from $9.2 million. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rise to $4.6 million from $425,000. Chief Executive Officer Thomas Chippas says: ‘The Argo team’s continued focus on financial discipline and operational excellence can be seen in this quarter’s results. Q1 was strong in terms of revenue and earnings, both of which increased compared to Q4 2023. We exited the bitcoin halving with cash of over $12 million, Q1 debt reduction of over $12 million and streamlined Quebec operations resulting from the sale of Mirabel. We are enthusiastic about Argo’s future growth and development, and are dedicated to delivering value to our shareholders


Unicorn AIM VCT PLC - venture capital trust largely backing AIM traded firms - Net asset value per share at March 31 half-year end totals 103.6 pence, down 15% from 122.6p at end of September. Accounting for shares issued following subscription offer, and adding back dividends, total return for six months was negative 3.1%, compared to positive 3.3% return from FTSE AIM All-Share Index. ’It is worth noting that the FTSE AIM 100 Index (the largest 100 companies on AIM) delivered a total return of +5.4% for the period, while the rest of the index delivered a return of -1.23%, illustrating the weak performance of the smaller companies listed on the Index, many of which we hold,‘ Unicorn AIM VCT adds. Maintains interim dividend at 3.0p per share. Also paid special interim dividend of 11.7p.


Livermore Investments Group Ltd - invests in fixed income instruments such as collateralized loan obligations - Net asset value per share at end of 2023 totals $0.82, rising 6.5% from $0.77 a year prior. Firm adds: ’2023 was a surprisingly robust year for global growth despite higher interest rates for longer than anticipated. Advanced economies mostly performed well and avoided forecasted recessions. Businesses and consumers were resilient, especially in the United States.‘ It adds: ’As we look ahead in 2024, we anticipate liability spreads to tighten as high current carry, short duration, and a soft landing expectation create attractive risk-reward characteristics.‘


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