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Tribal Group plc (LON:TRB) bounced 13% higher to 64.5p after it won a contract worth A$10mln (£5.5mln) with the University of Sydney.

The information technology firm, which is focused on the education sector, is to provide the university with its SITS:Cloud service.

The contract, which has an annual recurring revenue value of roughly £500,000 a year, is set to run for five years with an option to extend for a further two years.

2.55pm: Watches of Switzerland rebounds in June and July

Watches of Switzerland Group PLC (LON:WOSG) ticked higher (and then some) to 309p (up 18%) after it said it achieved year-on-year sales growth in June and July.

The growth came after stores were allowed to reopen following the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic lockdown.

The retailer added that it expects a continued strong luxury watch market in the UK and US throughout the year, so it has guided for total revenue of £840mln-£860mln assuming that there are no further lockdowns in its markets.

2.05pm: Dignity restored as CMA has a rethink on price controls

Dignity PLC (LON:DTY) shares rocketed 56% to 610p in relief as the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) dropped plans to introduce price controls on funerals.

Peel Hunt upgraded its rating to ‘hold’ from ‘sell’ following the CMA report.

The CMA found that it would not be possible to impose price controls given the current circumstances, said the broker.

1.15pm: Coats Group’s sales looking a bit threadbare

Coats Group PLC (LON:COAT), the industrial thread manufacturer, unravelled 5.0% to 58.9p after a disappointing half-year report.

Like-for-like (LFL) sales were down 25% in June but things improved a bit in July, with LFL sales down 18%.

In the first half of 2020, LFL revenues were down 26% on the first half of 2019.

12.15pm: Pennant says sales are flagging during the pandemic

Pennant International Group PLC (LON:PEN) slipped 7.7% lower to 36p after it said the coronavirus pandemic continued to affect the delivery of some group contracts.

Delays in key meetings, the unavailability of relevant customer personnel and the disruption and productivity impact of total remote working have delayed progress on the group’s engineered-to-order programmes, while local lockdowns have prevented delivery and installation of Pennant training aids at customer sites overseas.

Restrictions in Canada and Australia have reduced budgeted services revenues in those territories, Pennant said.

11.30am: Topps Tiles in relief rally

Topps Tiles PLC (LON:TPT) staged a relief rally, rising 15% to 49.8p, after it said it expects to generate a modest profit this year.

The retailer said sales in the six weeks to August 8 jumped by 13% to £4mln, with like-for-like sales up 15%, thanks to strong home improvement and DIY demand, with trade customer activity recovering steadily from April lows.

Online sales have moderated from the peaks seen in April and May but they remain above pre-coronavirus pandemic levels, it added.

10.45am: The Panoply Holdings lands big contract with the Land Registry

The Panoply Holdings PLC (LON:TPX), up 17% at 140p, has landed two significant contract wins with Her Majesty’s Land Registry.

It has been quite the morning for small caps announcing contract wins – RA International and Eckoh have also weighed in with contract news – and Panoply, which advises companies on how “digital transformation”, was on trend with its news.

The contracts are expected to generate up to £4.8mln in revenues. Neal Gandhi, the company’s chief executive officer, said it was the second contract win in the current fiscal year that has been worth more than £4mln.

10.00am: Angus Energy the top riser as it applies for an extended well test at its Balcombe field

Angus Energy PLC (LON:ANGS), up 32% at 1.55p, was the top riser in London on Thursday after an update on its Balcombe site.

The company has posted notice of its application for an extended well test at the Balcombe site, and following the statutory seven day waiting period, the submission will be lodged with West Sussex County Council in Chichester no later than Thursday of next week.

Angus was at pains to reiterate it would not be using any fracking techniques on any of its presently operated fields.

Fracking does not need to be employed at Balcombe because the company will be exploiting a limestone reservoir within the shale, Angus said.

9.15am: RA International wins big order in Southern Africa

RA International Group PLC (LON:RAI) jumped 26% higher to 58p in early trade on Thursday after news it has won a major new contract.

The deal, with a large engineering and construction firm, focused on the oil and gas sector, will run for two years with a value of around US$60mln.

Under the terms of the contract, RA International will provide integrated facilities management services in Southern Africa.

Another stock on the rise after a contract win was Eckoh PLC (LON:ECK), which was up 5.6% at 66.5p.

The provider of secure payment products and customer contact solutions has secured a six-year contract extension worth £4mln to provide services relating to London’s congestion charge.

The contract extension is expected to see Eckoh deliver an expanded remit for the congestion charge service, providing customer contact centre solutions alongside the existing secure payments service.

Proactive news headlines:

Directa Plus PLC (LON:DCTA) has said the strong antiviral properties of its graphene-enhanced coronavirus (COVID-19) mask have been confirmed by scientists in Italy. The Co-Mask, which incorporates the company’s G+ technology, was assessed by a team at the Catholic University of Rome, working with the Gemelli Hospital in the city. The preliminary results showed G+ enhanced fabrics significantly reduced the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 in lab tests. A scientific paper containing the full details of the trial and the results is underway and is expected to be published shortly.

Deltic Energy PLC (LON:DELT) told investors that its partner in the North Sea, Royal Dutch Shell PLC (LON:RDSB), has provided processed 3D seismic data over the Pensacola Zechstein Reef prospect. The data package includes new Bluewater seismic data, acquired with Shell in August 2019 which has been merged with reprocessed legacy 3D data. Proprietary advanced processing technologies delivered a robust image over the Pensacola prospect and the partners will now update their interpretation of the prospect, Deltic said.

Eckoh PLC (LON:ECK) has secured a six-year contract extension worth £4mln to provide services relating to London’s congestion charge. The provider of secure payment products and customer contact solutions said the contract extends the existing agreement with Capita PLC (LON:CPI) and Transport for London (TfL). The extension is expected to see Eckoh deliver an expanded remit for the congestion charge service, providing customer contact centre solutions alongside the existing secure payments service.

Condor Gold PLC (LON:CNR) said it has “significantly” de-risked and progressed its La India gold project in Nicaragua. The company has acquired 85% of the land within the permitted La India open pit mine site infrastructure, including the key areas of the location of the processing plant, tailings storage facility, open pit, waste dump area and the explosive magazine. The tailings facility and two water retention ponds are being designed by Tierra Group, with 40% of engineering designs completed, while the design of the site-wide water balance including a surface water management plan is also underway.

Jubilee Metals Group PLC (LON:JLP) has tied up a deal that fully utilises its chrome processing capacity at the Windsor recovery plant in South Africa while acquiring access to new facilities in an agreement that will further enhance output. Under the terms of the transaction, it is targeting production of 40,000 tonnes of concentrate per month for the next three years. It has locked in a chrome sale price, therefore locking in an earnings margin, which will be enhanced by the rights to any platinum group metals (PGM) it recovers from discarded material.

Caledonia Mining Corporation PLC (LON:CMCL) has said its Blanket mine in Zimbabwe put in a strong financial and operating performance in the second quarter of 2020. The company noted that the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic had very little effect during the period with production continuing at around 93% of the targeted level during a three-week lockdown period that started in Zimbabwe on March 30. After the lockdown, production subsequently hit above par levels, which meant production for the quarter was only 1.2% below target. Production continued above target in July.

Bahamas Petroleum Company PLC (LON:BPC) has told investors it is making rapid progress as it familiarises itself with its newly expanded portfolio of assets following the recent acquisition of Columbus Energy. The company provided a new corporate presentation to communicate its new strategy, which chief executive Simon Potter highlighted that the benefits of BPC’s portfolio are already being felt. “We are making rapid progress on familiarising ourselves with the potential of our recently expanded portfolio of assets,” Potter said in a statement.

Base Resources Limited (LON:BSE) has issued its mineral resources and reserves report for 2020 reflecting the introduction of resources for the Ranobe deposit at the Toliara Project, where a maiden resource was established in December, along with adjustments for the Kwale South Dune deposits for mine depletion. As of June 30, 2020, Ranobe comprised 1,293mln tonnes (Mt) at an average heavy minerals (HM) grade of 5.1%, giving it 66Mt of contained HM resources. Reserves amounted to 586Mt at an average HM grade of 6.5%, for 38Mt of contained HM. At the same date, Kwale South was estimated to be 246Mt at an average HM grade of 2% for 4.9Mt of contained HM. Reserves totalled 40Mt at 3.4% HM, for 1.4Mt of contained HM.

Personal Group PLC LON:PGH), a leading provider of employee services in the UK, has announced that its third dividend for 2020 of 5.9p per share will be paid on September 25, 2020, to holders on the register as at August 21, 2020, and the shares will be marked ex-dividend on August 20, 2020. As detailed in the company’s trading update on August 7, while acknowledging the impact that the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), and the associated societal changes, have had on the business performance so far in 2020, the company has had a positive start to the year and maintains a strong balance sheet with no debt. As a result, the board has decided to restore dividend payments for Q3 to normal levels following the reduction in the dividend payment in Q2. The board will again revisit and review the remaining 2020 dividend payment later in the year while continuing to monitor the impact of the COVID-19 situation on the business. This dividend, the third of four to be announced this year, represents a 1.3% increase over the equivalent period last year, reflecting a return to the company’s progressive dividend policy.

Arix Bioscience PLC (LON:ARIX), a global venture capital company focused on investing in and building breakthrough biotech companies, has announced that its interim results for the six months ended June 30, 2020, on Tuesday, September 8, 2020. Arix will publish a pre-recorded presentation on the same day, at 7.00am BST, followed by a Q&A session accessible via conference call or webcast at 12.30pm BST. A webcast of the presentation will be available on the company’s investor relations website at

Clipper Logistics PLC (LON:CLG) a leading provider of value-added logistics solutions, e-fulfilment and returns management services has said it will announce its results for the year ended April 30, 2020, on Monday, August 24, 2020. There will be a conference call for sell-side analysts at 9:30am on the day of result, to receive the dial-in details please contact Buchanan at

IXICO PLC (LON:IXI), the data analytics company delivering insights in neuroscience, has announced that it will provide a live presentation presented by CEO, Giulio Cerroni and CFO, Grant Nash, on Tuesday, August 25 at 1.30pm. The presentation will be hosted through the digital platform Investor Meet Company. Investors can sign up to Investor Meet Company for free and add to meet IXICO PLC via the following link: Questions can be submitted pre-event via your IMC dashboard or in real-time during the presentation, via the “Ask a Question” function. A recording of the presentation, a PDF of the slides used, and responses to the Q&A session will be available on the Investor Meet Company platform afterwards. No new price sensitive information will be disclosed, and a PDF of the presentation will be uploaded to the company’s website.