Shareholders in volatile insurance services group Quindell (QPP:AIM) could get at least a 100p per share cash windfall if an asset sale is successful. Quindell jumps 11.4% to 153.4p after agreeing to sell its professional services arm to SGH for £637 million cash plus further money in the future subject to certain criteria.
It says shareholders will share a large proportion of this money, up to £500 million. Many investors are clearly not taking their chances by waiting for the deal to complete, as there was a heavy bout of profit taking following a share price spike at the market open to 171p.
Home improvement giant Kingfisher (KGF) gains 2.7% to 367.4p on news its acquisition of Mr Bricolage will not go ahead. Amid reservations from the majority of the French DIY retailer’s board and a major shareholder, anti-trust clearance won’t be obtained in time and Kingfisher is ‘considering all of its options.’
Real Greek owner Fulham Shore (FUL:AIM) rises 1.9% to 13.5p after conditionally agreeing to acquire Rocca, the owner of pizzeria Franco Manca, for £27.5 million. The company, which already operates one Franco Manca restaurant under a franchise agreement, has raised £4.75 million to part fund the acquisition and support the opening of new restaurants.
Catering giant Compass (CPG) adds 1.1% to £11.87 after reporting a strong first half, flagging expected organic growth towards 5.5% and operating profit margin improvement of around 10 basis points. It says its expectations for the full-year remain positive but warns the economic environment in some of its emerging markets is uncertain and lower commodity prices are impacting its offshore and remote business.
Trading at distribution specialist Diploma (DPLM) is mixed as acquisitions helprevenue 7% higher in the six months to March but margins are hit by currency headwinds. Nevertheless, the stock rises 2.3% to 830p.
Veterinary services provider CVS (CVSG:AIM) clips ahead 0.5p to 500.5p after announcing the £12 million acquisition of YourVets, as well as new banking facilities to support organic and acquisitive growth.
Fuel technology play Quadrise Fuels (QFI:AIM) falls 22.8% to 11p as half year numbers reveal a widened pre-tax loss of £2.2 million against £1.8 million a year earlier on higher costs and a share option charge. The company admits it was ‘frustrating’ it did not progress more of the projects driving the adoption of its patented MSAR fuel through 2014.
Falklands oil explorer Borders & Southern (BOR:AIM) cheapens 10.7% to 5.45p as it reveals it has been unable to secure the farm-out partner necessary to allow it to participate in the drilling programme currently ongoing off the islands. Depending on the outcome of this activity it could be some time before a rig is in the area again.
A renewed sell off in oil prices as geo-political fears recede is leading to weakness in the sector. Notably BG (BG.) is down 2.5% at 851.4p.
Clincial research specialist Venn Life Sciences (VENN:AIM) advances 12.9% to 24p on signing €4.1 million worth of contracts with an un-named US biotech to help evaluate the efficacy of drugs in clinical trials.
Prestige and volume car dealer Marshall Motor announces it has priced its IPO at 149p. This will give the group, which has raised £40 million, a £115.1 million market cap when debut dealings start on 2 April.