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Shuka Minerals (SKA), an African-focused mine operator and developer, announced the appointment of Mr. Quinton van der Burgh, CEO of Q Global Commodities, Limited as its new Non-Executive Chairman and Board Director. The Company is also pleased to announce a further strengthening of its Board with the appointments of experienced financial and technical executives, Dr. Allen Zimbler and Marcel Nally as Independent Non-Executive Directors effective immediately. SKA said Quinton’s appointment to the Board marks a significant milestone, underscoring his commitment and affirming the Company’s dedication to strengthening our leadership. This also complements the strategic investment by Q Global Commodities, which we consider a major achievement for the Company.

Comment: Quinton van der Burgh joining the board of Shuka is rather akin to Paul McCartney joining one’s new rock group. The news of the billionaire’s arrival will not only be a massive boost to Shuka, but also liven up the junior mining space in the UK. One would expect shares of SKA to do a “Marula” in quick time.

Orcadian (ORCA) noted the recent press release from the Government of the United Kingdom that they intend to legislate to require the North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) to invite applications for new oil and gas production licenses on an annual basis, subject to certain key conditions being met.  The key conditions relate to the balance of trade in hydrocarbons and emissions intensity of gas production relative to LNG imports. ORCA said it was delighted to hear that the Government intends to legislate for annual oil and gas licensing rounds. It believes this puts a lid on the tired argument that domestic oil and gas production is inconsistent with climate commitments.

Comment: It may be that ORCA gets a visit from the Just Stop Oil brigade, so lock up your paintings is the message. At least the company is still getting the benefit of a cash strapped government remembering that North Sea oil revenue can pay for the welfare benefits of Just Stop Oil protesters.

Mirriad (MIRI) the in-content advertising company, announced that it entered into a new agreement with a US entertainment company ranked top 10 by advertising revenue and a global leader in targeted subscription streaming. The Agreement sets out the framework by which Mirriad expects to work and integrate with the Partner with a view to activating new in-content opportunities. The company said this Partner owns and distributes some of the most outstanding original TV and film content and we are delighted to be working with them to unlock the exciting opportunities of in-content advertising.

Comment: NBC anyone? The MIRI share price has actually been rising since the summer, albeit from a rather low base. It might rise rather more if the company was able to deliver a big reveal on the Partner.

Helium One Global (HE1), the primary helium explorer in Tanzania, updated on the drilling of the Tai-3 well.  Elevated helium shows, up to six times above background, have been identified in the Lower Karoo Group and Basement targets. The company said it was delighted with the initial results at Tai-3 and it was extremely encouraging to see the helium shows increase with depth, as we had anticipated. We are pleased to have successfully TD’d safely, and managed to address the minor issues with the rig quickly and efficiently. Given the mud losses encountered once it had reached the fractured Basement, it has decided to TD now so it can minimise any risk to wellbore stability and ensure that it can obtain successful logs and downhole gas samples. It very much looking forward to commencing wireline operations and further evaluating the well.

Comment: A RNS that Sir Humphrey Appleby would be proud of. The bulls live to fight another day, and the bears can literally engage in mud slinging if they like. It would have been helpful to know the historical significance of 6 times helium shows from the company in the update.

Novacyt S.A. (NCYT), a specialist in clinical diagnostics, confirms IVDR accreditation under the new EU requirements of the In Vitro Diagnostic Regulation for its DPYD genotyping assay, which supports the identification of cancer patients at risk of suffering a severe, and potentially life-threatening, reaction to common chemotherapy. The company said it was delighted to announce the first conformity of one of its products to the new EU regulations for in vitro diagnostic products. This success reflects the high-quality of the product in terms of both performance and safety, and follows a rigorous review by its Notified Body.

Predator Oil & Gas (PRD), the Jersey based Oil and Gas Company, advised that the transaction for the acquisition from Challenger Energy Group Plc of T-Rex Resources (Trinidad) Limited and an 83.8% the Cory Moruga licence, onshore Trinidad, has today, 7 November 2023, completed.

Comment: It has to be said that T-Rex Resources is a great name for a company, something that the late Marc Bolan would have appreciated. It is also the case that shares of Predator continue to defy gravity and the cynics in a remarkable way, especially given the amount of fund raises the company has delivered. It continues to be a Teflon stock.

Harland & Wolff Group (HARL), the UK quoted company focused on strategic infrastructure projects announced that its recently opened Miami based office has been awarded its first contract for circa $1.5m to support TampaShip (part of the Edison Chouest Group, based in Tampa, Florida)  in the completion of the construction of a floating dock for the Bollinger shipyard facility in the Gulf of Mexico. The company said it was delighted that it has signed its first contract in the USA within less than six months of establishing our business in Florida. The North American opportunity is substantial across all its five markets and its new team is working hard to convert these opportunities into firm contracts, not only for the US business itself, but also for cross-border transactions between US clients and our facilities in the UK.

Comment: One can only imagine how hard the new team in Tampa are working. Nevertheless, a great result for HARL given that this news follows on from solid domestic contract wins that are yet to be reflected in the share price.

Galileo Resources (GLR) updated shareholders regarding progress on the Phase 2 diamond drilling programme to test multiple targets over the Shinganda Project Copper-Gold Project, Zambia. Hole SHDD017 is a particularly impressive hole with an intercept length of more than 250m which was heavily brecciated and accompanied by copper mineralisation throughout its’ length, with values to be determined by assay. The nature of the host environment is not typical for traditional Copperbelt mineralisation which leads it to believe that this could be a totally different style of mineralisation.

Comment: Galileo shares have been stirring of late from below 1p, with today’s news providing the impetus for a return to the top of the recent trading range.

Pennpetro Energy (PPP), an independent oil and gas company, advises that the Chalk Talk #1H well has been on extended well test, the first two truckloads (170 bbls each) of 33 API oil have been dispatched from the oil storage facilities at the Whistling Straits #5H facility located 1,000 feet from the CT1H well. The company said needless to say, it was very pleased with how the Chalk Talk 1H well is performing with the first oil tankers leaving site. The flow rates seen far exceeded our expectations, especially compared to its flow rates when the well was shut in over a year ago.

Comment: Not quite a billion barrels, but a decent start for a minnow whose share price is still at the ground floor. One would expect a run higher after today’s news.

Croma Security Solutions (CSSG) report finals to June. The core business Vigilant which is manned security in stores was sold during the  year for £6.5m in cash. Sales at the continuing operations Croma Locksmith and Croma Fire & Security, improved 38% to £8.03m withan increased  EBITDA of £0.95m anda number of new commercial orders in the pipeline are reported. There is an acquisitive growth  strategy to build sales network and product range.  Net Cash  is  £2.14m and a 2.2p dividend is to be  paid.

Comment: The 5% yield with the share at 44p and £6m mkt may make it worth going along  for the ride.

Vianet Group (VNET) yesterday afternoon a Non-Ex Director brought 100,000 shares at 69p. This is some days after its pre-Interim Trading Update to September  left the shares unchanged as the company implements a diversification strategy.  The NED, Stella Panu is a founding partner of Maven Capital   who more than doubled her holding. The Interim Financial highlights were relatively static with H1 turnover at £7.19m from £7.18m with a loss before tax of £171k down from £200k, gross profit margins increased to 69% of which 87% is recurring as customers typically are in 3–5-year agreements for its cloud-based business intelligence services. A Partnership with Vendekin, is reported to be unlocking substantial new market opportunities in contactless payments and  mobile checkout systems  for unattended retailers. A strong H2 is expected, and net debt is around £2m, after a £1m tax -refund.

Comment: At 70p with a £20m Mkt Cap it could make a ‘stella’ recovery.