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Aukett Swanke subsides after downbeat AGM statement

A look at the day's major movers, including Ironveld, Brave Bison, Pebble Beach, Zanaga, Debenhams, 7digital and Diurnal

Architect at work
At the group level Aukett Swanke continues to expect the first half to be loss-making, though with such losses much reduced from the prior year figure

The share price of architects firm Aukett Swanke Group PLC (LON:AUK) suffered severe subsidence after the company’s annual general meeting statement.

The board said it continues to be cautious about the overall performance for the full year which remains revenue sensitive, though it is confident enough to repeat the guidance provided in January, namely that it will make a profit for the 2019 financial year.

The shares were down 4.8% at 1.475p.

1.30pm: Ironveld dips after half-year losses deepen a tad

Half-year results from Ironveld PLC (LON:IRON) revealed virtually unchanged losses from the pre-revenue owner of an iron, vanadium and titanium project in the Limpopo province.

The company made a loss of £254,000 in the second half of last year, compared to a loss of £243,000 the year before.

Shareholders hoping for news regarding the talks with a potential off-take partner had to make do with an assurance that discussions are still ongoing.

Ironveld’s shares were off 5.3% at 1.8p.

12.15pm: Brave Bison turns back after chief bean counter halves his stake

Can bison – especially brave ones – retreat? Brave Bison Group PLC (LON:BBSN) certainly managed it on Thursday after a director sold shares.

The shares plunged 13.2% to 2.43p after Paul Campbell-White, the chief financial officer of the social video specialist sold 1.5mln shares at an average price of 2.77p a share.

The sale practically halved the bean-counter’s stake, which now stands at around 0.25% of the issued share capital of Brave Bison.

The shares have been on a good run this year, rising from 2.24p to 2.9p at last night’s close.

11.00am: Pebble Beach rocks on after surprising market with its full-year results

Broadcast software developer Pebble Beach Systems Group PLC (LON:PEB) got a warm reception to its full-year results, which were ahead of management expectations.

Adjusted underlying earnings (EBITDA) shot up to £2.5mln from £0.5mln while the loss before tax narrowed to £472,000 from £2.7mln the year before.

The reduction in losses was despite a dip in revenue to £9.17mln from £10.32mln the year before. The gross margin improved to 73% from 63% the previous year.

The shares were up 8.7% at 6.25p.

10.15am: Zanaga dips after Zanaga project update

Zanaga Iron Ore Company Ltd (LON:ZIOC) was “pleased to provide an update to shareholders on the Zanaga Project; investors were less pleased to receive it.

The shares fell 9.1% to 9p as the company went into detail on the status of the early production project.

The company said the cost estimate of the pellet feed concentrate plant has been put at US$38mln. With an operating cost of US$3.75 (excluding power costs) per tonne of ore over the lifetime of the mine.

READ Zanaga project update

9.30am: Debenhams down after bondholders give green light to plan that would all but wipe out shareholders

Daily Debenhams update department: the shares plummeted 18% after bondholders voted in favour of the refinancing plan.

The shares are now languishing at 2.30p a pop, which may or may not prod Sports Direct’s Mike Ashley into making the cash offer for the company that he is said to be considering.

READ Debenhams bondholders back refinancing plan in blow to Sport Direct's Mike Ashley

Ashley, who stands to lose millions of pounds should his Debenhams stake be diluted out of sight, has tried several ways to wrestle control of the retailer, none of which have worked.

A message on the Twitter site publicises that Debenhams has a sale on in which it is offering up to 70% off the price of toys; what chance Mike Ashley buying some so he can throw them out of the pram?

9.30am: Rumours of 7digital's impending demise continue to appear to be wide of the mark

Having suffered a corporate near-death experience earlier this year 7digital Group PLC (LON:7DIG) has continued its comeback with two new deals.

It has agreed a partnership with ACCESS – not the credit card provider of days of yore – that will see 7digital integrate its internet protocol (IP) radio services and application program interfaces (APIs) into ACCESS's recently launched Twine for Car multimedia content service platform, which is targeted at vehicle manufacturers.

7digital has also agreed an initial one year deal with Dubset, a rights technology company that identifies, claims, and collects royalties for labels and publishers when content from their catalogues are (ahem) “borrowed” for remixes and the like.

“Technology has levelled the playing field when it comes to creating music and distributing it to a receptive audience,” said Simon Cole, the chief executive of 7digital.

Translation: people who can neither sing or play can now easily use other people's music to enhance their own recordings.

The shares were up 12.2%.

Diurnal Group PLC (LON:DNL), the adrenal disease specialist; made a bright start to the morning, with its shares 8.5% higher after it announced its interim results and more importantly a marketing and distribution agreement for the commercialisation of its Alkindi therapy in the Nordic region with Anthrop Pharma.

"We believe that Anthrop's local expertise in the Nordic region will significantly accelerate the commercial uptake of Alkindi in these territories, whilst enabling us to focus the group's resources on the larger European markets,” said Martin Whittaker, the chief executive officer of Diurnal.

Proactive news headlines:

Europa Metals Ltd (LON:EUZ) has welcomed changes to regulations governing the use of land for mining in north-west Spain’s Castilla y Leon region. “The new law provides Europa Metals with a clear path to progress Toral into potential future mine development working, within the requisite new regulations," said Laurence Read, executive director.

Ceres Power Holdings PLC (LON:CWR) is on track to see revenues double for the year as it accelerated commercial growth inking deals with Robert Bosch and Chinese engineering giant, Weichai. The company is the inventor of the SteelCell, a low cost, next-generation fuel cell, which is in its fifth iteration.

Arix Bioscience PLC (LON:ARIX) said it is well positioned for further growth as it unveiled a heavy-hitting new independent director alongside full-year results. The new appointment first: corporate financier Mark Breuer, who spent the last two decades with JP Morgan, will join the audit committee when he officially takes on his non-executive role on April 25, replacing Meghan FitzGerald.

Hurricane Energy PLC (LON:HUR) chief executive Dr Robert Trice, in today’s financial results statement, has highlighted that the offshore oil field developer is set for an “exciting period”. The AIM-quoted firm is now counting down to first production from the Lancaster field’s ‘early production system’ which will yield some 17,000 barrel of oil per day, and, perhaps more importantly, de-risk a much larger field development.

Diversified Gas & Oil PLC (LON:DGOC), after Wednesday’s close, revealed that it had launched a US$225mln equity raise to help fund a new US$400mln acquisition for its Appalachian basin portfolio. The acquisitive AIM-quoted firm, which had a £634mln market value prior to the announcements, has agreed to pick up 107 additional gas production wells from HG Energy II Appalachia.

Mkango Resources Ltd (LON:MKA) has received £7mln from Talaxis to fund the completion of the feasibility study for the Songwe Hill rare earths project.

Molecular diagnostics devices maker genedrive PLC (LON:GDR) said feedback from the studies of its hepatitis C virus (HCV) identification kit remains encouraging and it is confident of some near-term progress on countries green-lighting its use.

Avation PLC (LON:AVAP) has acquired a Boeing 737-800 Next Generation (NG) aircraft on the secondary market. The aircraft leasing firm said the acquisition was expected to complete in the second quarter of 2019.

Rose Petroleum PLC (LON:ROSE) told investors that it continues to seek a rig and funding for a drill programme in Utah, though good progress has been made with permitting. The company, in a statement, noted that it has secured drilling permits – one for the Gunnison Valley Unit and one for the Paradox acreage – supporting options for a multi-well programme once the other pieces of the plan are delivered.

Jubilee Metals Group PLC (LON:JLP) chairman Colin Bird has hailed “exceptional results” as the group swung to a profit in its first half.

Block Energy Plc (LON:BLOE) has made “excellent progress” progress in its quest to become Georgia’s leading independent oil and gas producer since it debuted on AIM last summer.

Plexus Holdings PLC (LON:POS) has reported a narrower loss and a strong upswing in sales revenue for the first half of its fiscal year.

Virtual reality (VR) firm Immotion Group PLC (LON:IMMO) has released its latest live-action VR experience, Swimming with Humpbacks.

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