Ilika PLC (LON:IKA) slid 7.9% to 41p after announcing plans to raise money by issuing shares at 40p a throw.

The solid-state battery technology company is seeking to raise up to £15mln through a placing of shares and a further £2mln through an open offer of shares.

The funds raised will, to use the company’s own management-speak, be used to drive the roadmap across the company’s portfolio of solid-state battery projects.

1.30pm: Anglo American declares force majeure at its Platinum subsidiary 

Anglo American PLC (LON:AAL), the company that acquired Sirius Minerals, saw its shares tumble 8.0% to 1,694.6p after it shut down a converter plant.

The company’s phase A converter plant, at the Waterval smelter in Rustenburg, was put out of action by an explosion within the converter last month, and the phase B unit was commissioned to take over the workload, except that water has been detected in the furnace and the company does not know where it is coming from.

This poses a high risk of explosion and the company has determined that it has no other option but to temporarily shut down the phase B unit, to ensure the safety of all employees, and avoid a catastrophic event. It is anticipated that the repair works to fix the phase B unit will take roughly 80 days. In the meantime, Anglo American Platinum has declared force majeure, which essentially means its customers can’t claim damages for delayed work.

111.15am: Rurelec warns of foreign exchange hit

Rurelec PLC (LON:RUR) fell 11.3% to 0.51p after it cautioned the market about the increasing foreign exchange risk the company is facing.

The increased risk for the power generation firm results from the recent policy change announcement by the Argentinian government that revenue deriving from the electricity generated by Energia del Sur (EdS) from its gas turbines and sold on the energy spot market will no longer be linked to the US dollar but to the Argentinean peso retroactively to February 2020 and will be updated monthly from March 2020.

Revenue deriving from the 43.7 megawatts of electricity generated under EdS’s Resolution 220/2007 power purchase agreement (PPA) will, however, still be linked to the US dollar.

The PPA expires on 9 September 2020 and will be superseded by a new tariff or, at worst case, be sold on the energy spot market. The remuneration level of that tariff/PPA is the subject of ongoing discussions with CAMMESA, the outcome of which is currently uncertain, Rurelec reported.

9.30am: Urban Exposure hitches its skirt as sale discussions continue

Urban Exposure PLC (LON:UEX) nudged up 1.5p or 2.2% to 68p in early trading on Friday after it revealed its unaudited net tangible asset value (NTAV) per share stood at 82.7p.

The specialist lender is in focus at the moment as it announced earlier this week that it is in exclusive discussions with Pollen Street Capital regarding the potential disposal of its loan book and thereafter, a connected sale of the company’s asset management business.

If the proposed deals go ahead, Urban Exposure will delist from AIM and return 73p per share to shareholders.

On the downside, Mpac Group PLC (LON:MPAC), the packaging equipment provider, shed 5% at 256p after it announced long-serving non-executive director John Davies has quit the board.

He will be replaced by Sara Fowler, a chartered accountant and former partner with Ernst & Young. Davies had served on the board for nine years.

Proactive headlines:

Echo Energy PLC (LON:ECHO) today extended an existing £1mln loan and, amid weak crude prices triggered by coronavirus impacts, has also decided to seek an additional standby credit facility for up to a further £1mln. In a statement, the company noted that production in Argentina remains in line with the board’s expectations.

PCF Group Plc (LON:PCF), the specialist bank, said trading in the first five months of its financial year has been strong. At its annual general meeting (AGM) today, chief executive officer Scott Maybury will tell shareholders that business origination in the five months to the end of February was up 30% year-on-year.

Open Orphan PLC (LON:ORPH) said its newly-acquired hVIVO business has landed a contract with an unnamed European biotech worth a minimum of £7mln. Researchers will carry out what’s called a human challenge study, which will be used to develop a vaccine against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), an illness which causes cold-like symptoms. Work is expected to start in the fourth quarter with revenue of £3.2mln expected to be booked in 2020.

NQ Minerals PLC (LON:NQMI) (OTCMKTS:NQMLF), the base and precious metals producer from its Hellyer Gold Mine in Tasmania Australia, announced that it has raised gross proceeds of £176,667 from a placing of 2,523,815 new ordinary shares at 7p each with UK based Institutional investor and a group of private investors for general working capital purposes.

Ashley House PLC (LON:ASH) said trading in its shares on AIM and NEX has been suspended because of the material uncertainty of the company’s financial position. The company was due to quit NEX at the end of this month anyway. The health and housing property partner said it has served notice of its intention to call in the administrators for F1 Modular Limited (F1M), the company’s 76%-owned subsidiary.

Shield Therapeutics PLC (LON:STX), a commercial-stage, pharmaceutical company with a focus on addressing iron deficiency, said it will be presenting at the Hardman & Co. investor forum, providing an overview of the business and the progress being made by the company. The firm noted that its chief executive officer, Carl Sterritt will present at the Hardman investor forum on Tuesday 10 March 2020 at Howard Kennedy LLP, 1 London Bridge, London, SE1 9BG starting from 5.30pm.

88 Energy Limited (LON:88E) (ASX:88E) has announced that its annual general meeting is scheduled to take place at 10:00am (WST) on 9 April 2020 at the Celtic Club, 48 Ord Street, West Perth WA 6005.