Audioboom (BOOM), the global podcast company, announce key milestones and data points connected to the success of the Audioboom Creator Network in 2023. During 2023, creators published more than 175,000 episodes through the Audioboom platform with episodes of True Crime leading the way, followed by Politics and Comedy. BOOM said its year in numbers not only reflects the size and scale of the platform that Audioboom has built, but is also testament to the hard work, creativity, and dedication of its partners. Podcasting is a wonderful and inspiring medium, and it believes 2024 will bring even more success.
Comment: The best statistic for shareholders of BOOM of late has been that the shares have so far doubled from their November 132p low, as positive speculation over the composition of the company’s shareholder list has taken hold. Today’s RNS notwithstanding, one wonders if there is any more important factor as far as the fundamentals of the company are currently concerned?
Chill Brands (CHLL), the consumer packaged-goods distribution company, outlines product launch plans and regulatory initiatives for Q1 2024. CHLL said “It has an exciting period ahead as its products enter new retail outlets on both sides of the Atlantic. It has established a strong distribution network and looks forward to further growth during 2024. As its operations expand, it is committed to adopting a responsible approach to sales of vape products. It is confident that our existing and future products will continue to capture market share as we deploy our strategy during 2024.
Comment: It may be that CHLL doth protest too much regarding the prospects for sales, talking distribution instead. Adding in regulatory concerns regarding vapes is perhaps not helpful to the bulls, especially if CHLL products are not affected by this. For 2024 RNS updates from Chill should just be about sales, not distribution, or of course funding.
East Imperial (EISB), the global purveyor of super-premium beverages, announced significant Tier 1 and Tier 2 on-premise account wins in New Zealand for November and December alongside progress in recent margin improvement initiatives. EISB said the Company’s margin improvement programme, implemented at the half-year mark, has started to deliver significant margin improvement as the Company heads towards a target of 35%, in line with guidance. This is the direct result of several initiatives, including a price increase and ongoing supply chain changes that see less reliance on third-party logistics providers.
Comment: Given that EISB is a “global purveyor” the focus on New Zealand may be too much detail. But given that the shares have nearly tripled off summer lows, perhaps one should not be too fussy.
Ondo Insurtech (ONDO), a company in claims prevention technology for home insurers, announces a new deal with Danish mutual insurance company LB Forsikring to accelerate the distribution of the LeakBot system to their members. ONDO said its Danish clients continue to expand the roll out to their customers and this new order shows the commitment LB Forsikring has to distributing LeakBot to more of their members, following the excellent take up rates demonstrated so far. It looks forward to working with them on the roll out of these additional LeakBots in the coming months.
Comment: Ondo was one of the standout situations in the small cap area of 2023, against horrific stock market conditions. 2024 will be all about taking the company to the next level, which essentially means an international scale up.
C4X Discovery Holdings (C4XD), a Drug Discovery company, announced that it has received a milestone payment of $11 million from AstraZeneca triggered by preclinical progress of C4XD’s NRF2 Activator programme. C4X said this significant preclinical milestone payment marks the progress AstraZeneca has made in driving the NRF2 Activator programme forward. NRF2 is a challenging target and this achievement provides further validation of its ability to generate differentiated, quality molecules in immuno-inflammation. It believes that its unique approach can deliver transformative oral therapies for patients suffering from immuno-inflammatory diseases. This is a great start to its year and it is confident of seeing further progress across its entire portfolio in 2024.
Comment: Shares of C4X are down nearly two thirds since the summer, something which appears somewhat unfair given the rather chunky relationship with pharma giant (and Covid vaccine specialist) Astrazeneca. Ideally, the arrival of $11m to C4X’s coffers will be a game changer to start this year.
Hydrogen Utopia International (HUI), a company specialising in converting non-recyclable mixed waste plastic into carbon-free fuels, informed shareholders that HUI has exercised its option to acquire 49% of Ohrid Organics, a company which it is anticipated will generate substantial future cashflows for its shareholders and which HUI would utilise in developing its pipeline of waste plastic to hydrogen plants. The report by Progressive Equity Research Limited was paid by the Company and can be accessed in this link: https://progressive-research.com/research/2024-starting-well/
Comment: As one would expect from a cynical bear market, so far HUI having a potential infinite funding runway, and the ability to fund its first waste plastic to hydrogen plant from Ohrid earnings has not sunk in. But given the magnitude of the medical cannabis proposition, the longer this is not factored into the HUI share price, the bigger the share price turnaround is likely to be.