The week’s biggest mover was Universe Group PLC (AIM:UNG), which was up 119% at 11.5p after directors recommended a bid from Inform Information Systems Limited (IISL).


IISL, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Professional DataSolutions Inc (PDI), is paying 12p in cash for the retail loyalty systems specialist.


PDI provides services to convenience retailers and petroleum wholesalers so there is considerable overlap between the businesses of the two fintech companies.


Investors in newly listed Technology Minerals PLC (LSE:TM1) are sitting pretty after a successful introduction to the market.


From a debut price of 2.25p, the stock is now trading at 3.59p, giving a profit of 56% for those people who took part in the November 17 flotation. At one point earlier this week the price was up at 4p.


Technology Metals is a battery metals play with a green twist. It owns mines that will one day feed the growing demand for battery power. It also owns 49% of a business that recycles both lead-acid and lithium-ion batteries. The recycling business has the potential to be very quickly cash flow positive and profitable, with two sites expected to be up and running next year, which has probably contributed to investor enthusiasm for the stock.


Given the latest concerns about a new strain of the Covid-19 virus, MyHealthChecked PLC (AIM:MHC) chose a good week to launch a rapid antigen test service.


The shares rose 56% to 3.2p on the back of the unveiling of two home testing services for travellers entering and departing the UK. One is a rapid antigen test and a verification service for residents and vaccinated travellers arriving in England from a non-red list country, while the other, to be launched next week, is a “Fit to Fly” rapid test for travellers leaving the UK.


In a similar vein, Novacyt SA said its genesig COVID-19 Real-Time PCR test has been approved in the UK by the UK Health Security Agency.


Novacyt, one of the big stock market winners of the pandemic, rose another 35% this week to 399.3p.


It was not, however, such a good week for another diagnostic play, Omega Diagnostics Group PLC (AIM:ODX), which released its interims this week.


Revenue rose 81% to GBP5.73mln in the six months to the end of 30 September from GBP3.61mln in the corresponding period of 2020 and yet the loss ballooned to GBP2.75mln from GBP280,000.


Even using earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) – a measure a little more kindly to management, especially if it has bought the odd stinker of a company in the past – saw losses almost double to GBP2.45mln from GBP1.29mln.


The company is shifting its focus to Covid-19 testing but said revenues from this line of business remain “extremely difficult to predict” and are expected to be more reliant on commercial partnerships than UK Government supply opportunities and are affected by the timing of pending regulatory approvals being granted.


Video game developer Frontier Developments PLC (AIM:FDEV) got it in the neck this week after it said initial sales of the PC version of its Jurassic World Evolution 2 game fell short of expectations.


The company cut its revenue guidance for the current year prompting a 32% slump in the share price to 1,708p.


The Elite series of games, the game that started it all off for Frontier, is normally a sure-fire winner for the developer but sales of the game Elite Dangerous: Odyssey have been more muted than expected so far this year, Frontier revealed.


Parcel freight firm DX (Group) PLC seems to have lost its way of late. It was unable to publish its annual report ahead of Thursday’s annual general meeting because a corporate governance enquiry relating to an internal investigation commenced during the financial year ended 3 July 2021 had yet to complete.


The group said it continues to trade in line with the board’s expectations but that was not enough to stop the shares reversing 31% to 21.5p as investors wondered what the corporate governance enquiry is all about.


Lastly, Harland & Wolff Group Holdings PLC, the owner of the famous shipyard in Belfast, shed almost a third of its value at 19.125p after it placed shares at 20p a pop, raising GBP8.2mln (including GBP0.9mln from subscriptions via the PrimaryBid platform.


The proceeds will be used to facilitate the delivery of existing and expected contracts and secure further higher value contracts in the company’s pipeline, Harland & Wolff said.

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