Triple digit declines for the FTSE 100 are not something out of the ordinary. However, sentiment in the small caps space was arguably rather worse than being down 140 points on the blue chips. There was a feeling that recent IPOs had tapped out the market. Indeed, in terms of IPOs it can very often be best to raise too little and float too cheap – to give the after market a decent rise, rather than overloading the packhorse.
In the spirit of one learning something new every day, it would appear that Bonanza is not just a Wild West adventure series from the 1960s, but also refers to a term used by miners, describing a large vein or deposit of silver ore (from the Spanish bonanza – meaning prosperity). There was certainly prosperity for shareholders of Landore (LND) as it announced the presence of Bonanza grade gold on the BAM Gold Deposit, Junior Lake Property, Ontario, Canada. 432.0 grams/tonne gold over 0.32 metres has been intersected in drill hole 0421-785 from 191.5m on cut grid line 2850E in the footwall below the currently defined East pit of BAM. Shares of Landore jumped nearly 3%, although they had traded much higher during the session.
Given that it may currently be more likely to win the lottery than die of COVID-19 currently in the UK at least, it is not surprising that we have seen most diagnostics groups on the back foot. However, Avacta (AVCT) has made a decent shot of proving that the cream in this sub sector rises to the top. The company unveiled positive data from the clinical validation of its AffiDX® SARS-CoV-2 antigen lateral flow test. Data from the clinical study conducted in Europe on 98 positive COVID-19 samples identified the SARS-CoV-2 virus across a broad range of viral loads. Avacta’s lateral flow test for professional use, is set to begin commercial roll-out in Europe in May, with the shares rising 4% on the news.
Shares of long dated income play Dukemount Capital (DKE) squeezed up 6% in the run up to the following day’s AGM. Last month the company announced a joint venture to develop two 11KV gas peaking facilities which together will produce around 10MW of power for a total cost of approx. £6.25million. Dukemount said it believes that this joint venture represents the next steps to meeting its target of growing to a £100m plus business.
Shares of Caerus Minerals (CMRS) seemed to be readying themselves for a sustained break of recent 14p resistance, with a 5% rise. This came in the wake of last week’s update from the Cyprus based exploration and resource development company focused on developing mineral resources in Europe to supply the global “Clean Energy” drive. Drilling began on 14 April ahead of schedule and Caerus said it will continue until a systematic grid of drillholes has been completed over the N. Mathiatis dumps. The dumps, estimated to be over 4 million tonnes of material, are being drilled to test for copper and gold mineralisation remaining following the historic mining of the N. Mathiatis pyrite orebody.
Sticking with the mining space and it was the turn of NQ Minerals (AQSE: NQMI), the base and precious metals producer from its Hellyer Mine and owner of the Beaconsfield Gold Mine, both in Tasmania, Australia, to report its First Quarter 2021 provisional and unaudited operating financial results and production results from the Hellyer Gold Mines. In a strong all round performance, mining and processing operations at Hellyer realised provisional First Quarter 2021 gross revenues of A$17.9m, operating profits from operations of A$9.7m and net income of A$4.8m for the period from 1 January 2021 to 31 March 2021.
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