LONDON BRIEFING: Sizzling sofas - debuts as ScS sales soar

(Alliance News) - Online furniture retailer said Wednesday it will have a market ...

Alliance News 16 June, 2021 | 8:08AM
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(Alliance News) - Online furniture retailer said Wednesday it will have a market capitalisation of GBP775.3 million when it begins trading on London's Main Market.

The IPO price was set at 200p per share. The offer comprises of 50.0 million new shares to be issued by the firm, raising GBP100 million, and 46.9 million existing shares, meaning a total offer size of GBP193.8 million. will have 387.7 million shares on admission.

"A listing in London, where the business was founded, will enable us to accelerate our growth as we lead the development of the online furniture and homewares market as it moves online, both in the UK and internationally," said Chief Executive Philippe Chainieux.

Conditional dealings in shares begin on Wednesday and unconditional dealings will follow on Monday. They were trading marginally lower at 199.76p early Wednesday. expects to be eligible for inclusion in FTSE indices.

Already listed peer ScS Group boosted its outlook and resumed payouts following a strong year-to-date performance.

Like-for-like order intake in the 46 weeks to June 12 was up 11% year-on-year. As the upholstered furniture and floorings retailer's stores reopened in April, it saw like-for-like orders explode in the period stretching from April 4 to June 12, up nearly five-fold - also noting that stores were shut for the majority of the same period a year ago.

As a result of strong trading, ScS now expects its full-year performance to top market forecasts. Further, it said it now has the confidence to recommence dividends, starting with an interim payout of 3.0p per share.

"The group has a robust balance sheet and the re-introduction of dividends today reflects the board's confidence in the business going forward. As such, and given the strength of the current order book, the board's outlook for FY22 is substantially better than current market forecasts," it said.

ScS shares were up 14% early Wednesday.

Here is what you need to know at the London market open:




FTSE 100: up 0.3% at 7,195.72


Hang Seng: down 0.6% at 28,459.18

Nikkei 225: closed down 0.5% at 29,291.01

DJIA: closed down 94.42 points, or 0.3%, at 34,299.33

S&P 500: closed down 8.56 points, or 0.2%, at 4,246.59

Nasdaq Composite: closed down 101.29 points, or 0.7%, at 14,072.86


EUR: firm at USD1.2133 (USD1.2127)

GBP: up at USD1.4111 (USD1.4088)

USD: flat at JPY110.09 (JPY110.08)

GOLD: up at USD1,861.22 per ounce (USD1,860.80)

OIL (Brent): up at USD74.56 a barrel (USD73.70)

(changes since previous London equities close)




Wednesday's Key Economic Events still to come

US's Joe Biden and Russia's Vladimir Putin meet in Switzerland

1000 CEST Germany Ifo economic forecast

0930 BST UK house price index

0700 EDT US MBA weekly mortgage applications

0830 EDT US import & export price indexes

0830 EDT US housing starts and building permits

1030 EDT US EIA weekly petroleum status report

1400 EDT US Federal Reserve interest rate decision

1400 EDT US Fed economic projections


UK consumer prices jumped in May, with inflation exceeding the Bank of England's 2% target for the first time in nearly two years. The Office for National Statistics said the UK consumer price index jumped 2.1% on an annual basis in May, accelerating from 1.5% growth in April. May's annual inflation print was the highest reading since the same 2.1% growth rate was registered in July 2019. Consumer price growth has remained below 2% ever since then. The Bank of England targets a 2% inflation rate. Month-on-month, UK consumer prices rose 0.6% in May to match April's rate of growth. A separate release from the ONS showed UK producer price inflation also strengthened in May. Output prices grew 4.6% in the year to May, accelerating from growth of 4.0% in April, while input prices jumped 11% on a 12-month basis, again ticking up from April when prices grew 10%. May's input price growth was the highest rate since September 2011.


A handful of damaged fuel rods is behind a build-up of radioactive gases at a nuclear power station in southern China, authorities said, describing the problem as "common" with no need for concern. CNN reported earlier this week that the US government was assessing a report of a leak at the Taishan plant in China's southern Guangdong province, and the station's French operator Framatome reported a "performance issue". There has been an increase in radioactivity in one of the plant's two nuclear power units due to five damaged fuel rods, said a joint statement by China's environment ministry and the National Nuclear Safety Administration. The ministry said that the increase in radioactivity is "within the permitted range of stable operation" for nuclear power plants, and "there is no issue of radioactive leakage to the environment". Earlier this week, French energy utility EDF – the majority owner of Framatome – also had blamed the build-up of gases in one of Taishan's reactors on the deteriorating of coating on some uranium fuel rods.










Hipgnosis Songs Fund unveiled plans for a placing to snap up a "substantial" pipeline of songs. The music investment company is looking to raise GBP150 million via a share placing priced at 121p per share. The price represents a discount of 2.4% to Tuesday's closing price. Hipgnosis expects to use the funds to buy a "substantial" pipeline of songs identified by its investment adviser. The pipeline contains "some of the most influential and successful songs of all time", it asserted. "This raise gives our public markets investors, historic and new, the only chance for the next 12 months to get access to Hipgnosis' existing portfolio as well as a pipeline comprising some of the most important and successful songs of all time, at valuations that are highly attractive considering the continued explosive growth of streaming that will magnify future revenues considerably," said Merck Mercuriadis, founder of Hipgnosis as well as of The Family (Music), its investment adviser.




Westminster Group said it has won a 10-year managed services contract for the freeport of Monrovia in Liberia. The contract will start on July 1 and is expected to bring in USD1.1 million in the first 12 months, the company said. Westminster will provide port screen services, with revenue generated from all import containers passing through the port. The contract can be extended beyond the first 10 years. The contract award in Liberia follows Westminster's announcement on Tuesday of a security services contract for five airports in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which will deliver USD6 million in revenue in the first 12 months. Westminster's shares jumped 40% on the news and were up another 11% early Wednesday.




Regeneron Pharmaceuticals noted results from a UK trial which showed an antibody cocktail can reduce the risk of death in some sufferers of Covid-19. REGEN-COV, which consists of casirivimab and imdevimab, reduced the risk of death by 20% in hospitalised patients who were yet to see their own immune response. The probe, part of the UK Recovery trial, met its primary endpoint, Regeneron noted. The New York-based biotechnology firm added it is the "first trial to demonstrate that any antibody treatment improved survival in patients hospitalized with Covid-19". "Regeneron will share new data with regulatory authorities immediately and request that the US emergency use authorisation be expanded to include appropriate hospitalized patients," Regeneron said.


Wednesday's Shareholder Meetings

Anexo Group PLC - AGM

Augean PLC - AGM

Baille Gifford China Growth Trust PLC - AGM

Christie Group PLC - AGM

Dillistone Group PLC - AGM

Echo Energy PLC - AGM

Elixirr International PLC - AGM

Enwell Energy PLC - AGM

e-Therapeutics PLC - AGM

Filta Group Holdings PLC - AGM

FireAngel Safety Technology Group PLC - AGM

Foresight Solar Fund Ltd - AGM

Jadestone Energy PLC - AGM

Kier Group PLC - GM re proposed capital raise

Kooth PLC - AGM

Mattioli Woods PLC - GM re acquisitions and fundraise

Medica Group PLC - AGM

Standard Life Investments Property Income Trust Ltd - AGM

Tullow Oil PLC - AGM

WANdisco PLC - AGM

Xaar PLC - AGM


By Tom Waite;

Copyright 2021 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
Funding Circle Holdings PLC 139.00 GBX 2.06 -
HSBC Holdings PLC 397.45 GBX -0.89
ScS Group PLC 292.00 GBX -0.34 -
Westminster Group PLC 5.25 GBX -1.87 -

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