It’s August, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that the star fund managers would be relaxing at their sprawling estates in the south of France.
But not Neil Woodford, who stepped in on Monday to offer medical devices maker () a lifeline after it told investors it was on course to run out of cash within a few weeks.
, along with other major investors, has agreed to invest up to £8mln into the struggling business. But there was one the condition: it cancels its AIM listing.
That caveat sent the shares plunging 87% to 0.82p.
Investors are now stuck between a rock and a hard place: vote in favour of the cancellation and see their stakes diluted out of sight or vote against the proposals, which will likely see Sphere go under.
Given that backing Woodford and co is perhaps the only chance investors have seeing any of their money again, analysts think the cancellation and funding will be waved through.
Shareholders will vote on September 8 and, if the small-cap guru’s plans get the green light, the company expects its last day of trading on AIM to be on September 19, with official cancellation a day later.
You’ll have probably read about the shockers among the blue chips this week – , WPP and Dixons spring to mind. There were a few more on the junior market as well.
Digital wellness provider ’s () recent rebranding looks like it was all in vain as it was forced to call in the administrators earlier this week after failing to secure additional financing.
The company – which you might know better as Fitbug – had requested the suspension of its shares last month after its key lender, Belastock Capital, cut off its funding.
Despite interest from a “number of parties”, Kin said there had so far been no proposed solution that would enable the group to continue in its current form.
As a result, it brought in administrators in order to find a buyer for Kin Wellness, its principal trading subsidiary.
“The directors believe that any offer for the business of Kin Wellness Limited is unlikely to result in a surplus which will be available to as there is a secured creditor, NW1,” investors were told.
Household energy efficiency specialist () looks like it might be walking down a similar path to Kin in the not-too-distant future.
In July it launched a strategic review to explore options for new long-term financing, but its share price hit the skids on Wednesday after talks with its ‘preferred party’ failed.
That left one final party at the table, but Entu came out on Thursday and said that regardless of whether or not an agreement is reached it would still likely have to enter administration with a view to selling off its trading businesses.
Even more disappointingly for investors, the remaining proposals being considered attribute no value to the equity of the company or simply put, shareholders won’t be getting any of their back.
Shares are now suspended “pending…clarification of its financial circumstances” but investors were bailing before then, with the stock down 53% for the week to 1.4p.
Given the plight of those first few companies, you’d think it might’ve been a bit of a bloodbath on the junior market this week – but you’d be wrong.
The AIM All Share was up 0.5%, or 5.7 points, to break back above the 1,000 point barrier at 1,005.1.
It was a comfortable win for the blue chips this week though thanks to the weak pound, with the FTSE 100 up 1.5%, or 112.9 points, to 7,436.5.
Obviously then there were some small caps making moves higher, chief among them was producer PLC ().
Shares in the fuels producer added more than 40% to 4.2p and those buying in must know something that the rest of the market, and even Quadrise’s management, don’t.
After the sharp rise earlier in the week, the company was forced to come out on Friday and say that it had no idea what all the fuss is about.
One company that was marching higher and actually had a reason to be was video games creator PLC () which revealed that its next game will be called Jurassic World Evolution.
The game – which is based around the Jurassic World film franchise – will be launched on PC, PlayStation and Xbox next summer.
That happens to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the original Jurassic film as well as the next chapter of the Jurassic World franchise – Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom – which is due out in June 2018. Frontier will be hoping that sales of its game will get a little kick from that.
A tie-up with one of the most popular film series of all-time got investors excited and the share price roared 57% higher to £10.45.
PLC () had no time for a rest this week after it bagged a new workforce accommodation contract in the UK.
The firm, which takes shipping containers and turns them into liveable bedrooms, will provide 80 en-suite ‘rooms’ for the “major international company” for an initial one year period.
It will take Snoozebox just two weeks to build the ‘hotel’ which it expects to deploy next month and to start generating revenues later this year. Shares almost doubled to 0.41p.
Esports business () continued its recent good form after Formula 1 chose the company as its official partner to help deliver the upcoming F1 Esports Series.
The competition – which gets underway next month – will see gamers from around the globe compete to become the number one virtual F1 driver.
The racing giant is the latest ‘prestigious organisation’ to entrust the running of its competition with Gfinity; often uses the company to host its eSports tournaments.
Boss Neville Upton called it a “powerful endorsement” of Gfinity’s expertise and technology, and the market seemed to agree; shares raced 22% ahead over the week to 25.8p.