Oct. 04--Trading a million light years away from the sky-high 'jam tomorrow' level above pounds sterling 37 a share attained in 2007, Phorm Corporation still continues to attract buyers to keep dealers on their toes. Shares of the loss-making global personalisation technology company more than doubled to 6.26p before closing 3.12p or 96pc higher at 6.38p.
Demand was fuelled by news its Chinese operations had averaged 4.3m users a day in its first week of operations. The company said a nationwide opt-in process had begun in China, where an average of 4.3m users a day considerably dwarfs the 3.6m opted-in users a month or even daily active users of 1.2m it had announced for the rest of its business.
Phorm recently moved its head office from Delaware in the US to Singapore to focus on opportunities in Asia. It raised pounds sterling 10m in July via a placing of 208.3m shares at 0.048p to help build its business in Turkey and work towards launching commercial operations in China.
Phorm's shares crashed after its UK plans hit major problems when it was revealed it had trialled its controversial internet 'spying' technology without the knowledge or consent of tens of thousands of BT's customers. Eventually, BT, TalkTalk and Virgin Media all pulled out, forcing Phorm to look to overseas markets.
Blue chips will continue to tread water until the overhang of uncertainty surrounding budget negotiations in the US is lifted. The Footsie improved 11.54 points to 6449.04 while Wall Street closed 136.66 points down at 14,996.48 as the US government shutdown continued for a third day and leaders in Congress showed no sign of progress towards resolving the budget stalemate.
Mobile phone giant Vodafone buzzed 3.05p higher to 222p after respected US hedge fund manager and shareholder David Einhorn suggested to global newswire Bloomberg that US telecoms giant AT&T could launch a bid. Intertek's pounds sterling 45m acquisition of Global X-Ray & Testing Corporation, a US provider of non-destructive testing and mechanical integrity services to the oil and gas industry, left analysts underwhelmed and the close was 65p lower at 3201p.
Mike Ashley's Sports Direct International, which last month was admitted to the fabulous Footsie, fell 10.5p to 698p. Chief executive David Forsey and finance director Bob Mellors each trousered pounds sterling 6.4m after selling 950,000 of the 1m shares they bought, as part of the company's bonus scheme, at 680p a pop.
Reports that trading at Superdry fashion brand is exceeding expectations helped SuperGroup rise 41p to 1182p. Peroni brewer SABMiller lost 45p at 2990.5p after Credit Suisse downgraded to neutral from outperform and slashed its target price to 3250p from pounds sterling 38. The broker is concerned that currency swings experienced by the global consumer products specialists will be difficult for SAB to pass on to customers.
Close Brothers advanced 29p to a 52-week high of 1225p amid talk that its Winterflood Securities market-making business is making hay while the sun shines during the recent market upsurge.
Competition concerns continued to plague Imagination Technologies, 18.7p off at 306.3p. BTG edged up 2.6p to 383.1p after the healthcare company revealed that trading in the first half has been in line with expectations. The board also lifted full-year revenue guidance.
Continuing to reflect fears that the knackers' yard awaits Britain's second-biggest pawnbroker, Albemarle & Bond fell 2p further to a record low of 26p. It has not been able to conclude negotiations with its biggest shareholder over a deeply discounted rights issue, and is now in last-ditch talks with its lenders after they agreed a month's breathing space on covenant tests due on the pounds sterling 51m debt pile.
Profit taking left @UK 2p off at 42p. The e-commerce marketplace solutions provider has teamed up with Visa to deliver 'effective cost management' for governments and enterprise in Asia.
Inkjet printing technology company Xaar firmed 1.5p to 796.5p after a positive trading update. Jaywing, the marketing and consulting business, closed flat at 23.5p after revealing it was in advanced talks to sell its e-commerce arm Tryzens via a management buyout.
Despite reporting record results, brownfield property developer Inland Homes eased 0.75p to 39.62p. Annual pre-tax profits soared to pounds sterling 5.2m, from pounds sterling 1.6m, as revenues jumped to pounds sterling 31.1m from pounds sterling 6.1m. The company sold 55 homes in the 12-month period to end-June to generate revenue of pounds sterling 11.4m compared with last year when it sold nine homes with revenue of pounds sterling 1.7m. Inland sold 375 plots for pounds sterling 16.4m from zero in 2012.
Hygiene technology firm Byotrol edged up 0.12p to 6.5p after agreeing to buy out the rest of its consumer products division. It will finance the deal via the issue of 33.7m shares.