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Small cap movers: Clear Leisure PLC raises funds to accelerate cryptocurrency plans

A company’s share price does not normally rise after it places shares at a discount – quite the reverse – but Clear Leisure PLC (LON:CLP) has pulled off this rare trick.

Less than two weeks after raising £680,000 by placing shares at 0.6p each the investment company raised a further £1m by placing shares at a penny a pop, compared to the prevailing share price of 1.25p.

The difference with the latest placing and one reason why the shares rocketed to 2.65p on the news is that all the newly issued shares went to a single person, John Story, who as a result has an 11.4% stake in the company.

The other reason for the share price reaction was the use to which the funds will be put, namely the acceleration of Clear Leisure’s cryptocurrency plans. Everything to do with cryptocurrencies seems to go down well with investors at the moment.

The shares had ebbed to 2.05p by Friday but were still showing a profit on the week of 64%.

Another technology stock in demand was Catenae Innovation PLC (LON:CTEA) , which is the developer of a secure, blockchain-driven COVID passport system.

The shares jumped 61% this week after the company was asked to participate in a government initiative to make it quicker and easier for people to verify themselves using modern technology.

The consultation is being carried out by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) as it develops its Digital Identity Policy.

Another company to get a gig with the government was Live Company Group PLC (LON:LVGC), the live events and entertainment group.

It signed a contract with the UK Environment Agency to design and build a fully glued 3D model representing a climate change environment.

“This is yet another example of the fast-growing interest from a wide range of market sectors, in BrickLive’s expertise and creativity in producing imaginative scaled version models”, said Tina Anthony, the managing director of BrickLive, Live Company’s subsidiary.

Feedback PLC (LON:FDBK), the medical imaging firm, is another that can count the government among its customers for its flagship product, Bleepa, a secure instant messaging system that shares clinical-grade medical images on personal devices such as a phone or tablet.

The company admitted in its half-year report the pace at which Bleepa has been adopted by the NHS has slowed during the pandemic, for understandable reasons. Nevertheless, the company told investors it has “an exciting pipeline of opportunities” that has grown significantly on the back of the progress made in the second half of 2020.

The shares rose 21% on the week to 1.3p.

In the world of natural resources, Chariot Oil & Gas Limited (LON:CHAR), i3 Energy PLC (LON:I3E) and Mkango Resources Limited (LON:MKA) all had good weeks.

Chariot, up 24% at 8.59p, was on fire after it inked a collaboration agreement with Subsea Integration Alliance for the Anchois gas development project in Morocco.

The partners will take a ‘one team’ approach to fast-track the project to first gas, the company said.

I3 Energy’s operational update prompted the shares to move 24% higher to 7.45p.

The independent oil and gas company with assets and operations in the UK and Canada said its diversified portfolio continues to perform at or above expectations and that shareholders can look forward to a maiden dividend in respect of the first quarter of 2021.

Mkango hardened 18% to 21.5p after it revealed it has begun testing the flotation pilot plant for the Songwe Hill Rare Earths project, in Malawi.

“The start of pilot plant processing is a major milestone for the company and Mkango joins the ranks of the very few rare earths projects that have been advanced to this stage of development,” said William Dawes, Mkango chief executive.

The news from another mining company, Colombia-focused Orosur Mining Inc (LON:OMI), was less well-received.

The shares lost a third of their value after the company published assay results from four holes recently drilled at the company’s Anzá project in Colombia.

The shares have been on a good run since the company’s full-year results in October and this looked like another case of “buy on the rumour, sell on the fact”.

On the new issues front, attention next week will be on Virgin Wines, which is set to float on AIM.

Existing shareholders have raised £34.9m selling shares at 197p per share while £13m in fresh capital has been raised at the same price.

Based on the placing price, the market capitalisation of the company will be about £110m.

The company, which sells wines directly to consumers, has no connection with the Richard Branson enterprise other than a licensing agreement to use the Virgin name.

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