London shares nudge modestly higher in early trade on Monday in a week shortened by the upcoming Easter break. Miners are the main drain on progress nut a mixed bag of pharma and supermarket stocks provide enough upward momentum to lift the FTSE 100 index around 13 point higher, or 0.2%, to 6,202.
Gas meter installer and operator Smart Metering Systems (SMS:AIM) gains 2.3% to 400p as full-year results show revenue 27% higher and underlying earnings per share up 67% to 17.5p. It also announces the acquisition of two meter suppliers and an IT specialist business for up to £6.9 million in cash and shares.
Albanian oil producer Bankers Petroleum (BNK:AIM) jumps 96.7% to 120p as it agrees a C$575 million takeover from China's Geo-Jade Petroleum.
Interactive TV gaming company NetPlay TV (NPT:AIM) surges 8.7% to 9.4p after reporting adjusted EBITDA of £2.7 million in 2015, at the top end of market expectations. The figure is down from £3.6 million in 2014 as a result of a 626% increase in betting and gaming duties. The group has proposed an increase in the final dividend from 0.33p to 0.34p per share and a special dividend of 0.68p per share. Read SHARES web story exclusive here.
Specialist retailer Pets at Home (PETS) perks up 2.6p to 287.6p after announcing the appointment of Ian Kellett, the well-regarded boss of the retail division who played a pivotal role in Pets' IPO, as new CEO following Nick Wood's resignation.
Veterinary services provider CVS (CVSG:AIM) softens 3p to 742p despite interims showing further growth in sales and underlying profit. Investors focus on a drop in operating profit, due to a higher amortisation charge following a spate of acquisitions which have also driven up net debt. News like-for-like sales growth for January and February has improved only 'slightly' may also account for the share price reverse.
Liquid biopsy-maker Angle (AGL:AIM) races 13.5% higher to 80p after its Parsortix device detected prostate cancer in all sufferers participating in tests at Barts Cancer Institute. The device, which identifies cancer cells in blood samples, also allows doctors’ to assess the severity of the tumour.
Minimally-invasive tool maker Surgical Innovations (SUN:AIM) advances 6.3% to 1.68p on non-executive director Paul Hardy buying 650,000 shares at 1.6p each. This comes days after management posted an upbeat outlook in the company’s 2015 prelims.
Cancer drug developer ValiRx (VAL:AIM) dives 12% to 11p on issuing £4 million of convertible loan notes to British Virgin Islands-registered Bracknor Fund. The proceeds will expand its clinical trials.