FTSE 100 engineer IMI (IMI) is to return £620 million to shareholders after selling its beverage dispense and merchandising divisions to Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A:NYSE)-owned Marmon for £690 million. Shareholders will get to choose whether they want the cash as income and/or capital payment. The remaining £70 million proceeds of the sale to Warren Buffett's empire will go to the company's pension fund.

 

Smiths News (NWS) rises 8.3% to 210p on a well-received set of full-year results. Underlying pre-tax profit is up 11.6% to £53 million and the dividend's gone up 8.1% to 9.3p per share. Read our news analysis of the results here.

 

Investors head for the hills at telco and IT tester Anite (AIE) after a hefty profit warning. Word that the hoped-for second half workload rally has moved to the right is a big blow and sparks a near 34% shares price collapse to 74.5p. We'll have more on this story on the website later.

 

Acquisitive car dealer Vertu Motors (VTU:AIM) speeds 14% higher to 62p on record half-time figures and an upbeat outlook statement which trigger earnings upgrades, as anticipated by Shares in August. The UK's sixth-largest motor retailer reports near-80% growth in taxable profits to £8.8 million on sales up 33% to £837.2 million. Growth drivers include a strong momentum in new car sales, a good used car performance and further market share gains in the fleet business.

 

Digital x-rays technology developer Kromek (KMK:AIM) enjoys a strong start to life on the stockmarket, shooting 17% beyond its 51p placing price top 59.5p. It hopes to leverage £15 million of fresh funding to drive commercial sales and expansion plans.

 

NetPlay TV (NPT:AIM) advances 4.5% to 17.63p on a reassuring trading update. Third quarter net revenue is up 19% year-on-year, although that's a 9% decline on a quarterly basis.

 

Online gambling group 888 (888) has seen a solid third quarter with notable gains in casino offsetting a poor turn in bingo. Yet the stock slips 0.2% to 163.6p as investors are no doubt disappointed by minimal management comment on activities in the revived US online gaming market.

 

West African palm oil play Equatorial Palm Oil (PAL:AIM) cultivates a 26% gain to 6.12p after confirming talks with Malaysian palm product, natural rubber and cocoa producer Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad (KLK:MK). These discussions may lead to an offer of funding for Liberian Palm Developments, its troubled joint venture with shareholder Biopalm, or an offer for all of the company.

 

London-focused property company Great Portland Estates (GPOR) falls 0.8% to 576.2p despite securing permission to develop a 2.3-acre former Post Office site close to Oxford Street into office, residential and retail properties by the end of 2016.

 

Technology investor Imperial Innovations (IVO: AIM) fell 4.4% to 339.2p before recovering to 357.5p as its pre-tax profit dips to £3.8 million from £5.1 million in 2012. The £22 million invested in 28 companies in the year to August helped boost the value of its portfolio by 21% to £188.2 million.

 

Drug discovery company e-Therapeutics’ (ETX: AIM) slips 1.5% to 31p as an update on the progress of its cancer treatment and interim results fail to impress the market. Losses in the six months to August increased to £2.3 million from £1.8 million a year ago as ETS2101 enters Phase 1 trials.

 

Specialist publisher Future (FUTR) rises 11% to 14p on a reassuring trading update that says finals will be 'broadly' in line with management expectations following a strong performance in the last quarter of the year.


Issue Date: 16 Oct 2013