Friday 19 January 2018 ShareProphets: The one stop source for breaking news, expert analysis, and podcasts on fast-moving AIM and LSE listed shares

Competition time – which of these sleep-inducing delays will come to an end first?

By Cynical Bear | Sunday 2 July 2017

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from ShareProphets). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

To end my trilogy of tenuously connected pieces, I’m taking a look at four ongoing delays at each FastForward Innovations (FFWD), i3 Energy and, of course, Aidan Earley’s Newco and wonder which, if any, will win this slow and laborious race.

First at Jim Mellon's FastForward, as I last mentioned HERE, the deal between its investee company, Schoold, and TSX-listed Lingo Media was meant to complete by the end of May. It was then extended to 30 June and, surprise, surprise, we learnt on Friday that the period to complete diligence was being extended to 31 July.

The delaying factor here is almost certainly issues with raising sufficient funds to support the enlarged entity going forward; however, both companies have separately announced positive sounding developments within their businesses, so perhaps it will happen this month. Perhaps.

I actually wonder whether a complicating factor is that it is linked to a wider funding round for FastForward which will then allow it to support this Schoold/Lingo Media entity too.

Just to keep picking on FastForward for a moment; in January, it announced the potential IPO of another of its investee companies, Leap Gaming in the first half of 2017. Well, we have just entered the second half of the year so I presume that IPO must be really close, right? Considering that Leap Gaming is the largest of FastForward’s investments by some distance, one might imagine that it would keep its shareholders up-to-date with progress on this IPO but guess that was too much to ask for.

Moving on to the long-suffering shareholders at Glenwick and, to a certain extent, the shareholders of Paternoster Resources (PRS) who have an indirect holding in Glenwick. You will recall (as covered HERE) that Glenwick invested the last of its funds in a private North Sea oil play called i3 Energy on a promise that it was due to IPO shortly.

Things looked relatively promising on 10 May when i3 Energy announced its forthcoming IPO on AIM with a scheduled admission date of 26 May. Sounded great but, unfortunately, on 25 May it announced that the admission date was being moved to 7 June. Ok, just a short delay.

But, on 6 June there was a further announcement stating that it would now be late June; notice the lack of a precise date. Not that it made any difference as it announced on Friday that admission would now be mid-July, again suitably vague.

The team here has been trying to raise the necessary funds for a while now and the oil price cannot be helping; I’m beginning to wonder whether it will ever happen at all.

A comic piece on delays wouldn’t be complete without a quick update on Aidan Earley’s sterling efforts with Newco. Originally, Worthington (WRN) shareholders were due to get their Newco share certificates in March, then in May and then the Newco listing was due to occur in June and now, according to the Noble Resolve website, it is going to be “very soon”!

So here’s the competition. Will any of these actually happen in 2017 and, if so, which of these four events will happen first. This is how I’m pricing it up:

  • FastForward: Schoold / Lingo Media merger – 2/1
  • FastForward: Leap Gaming IPO - 10/1
  • i3 Energy IPO – 3/1
  • Aidan’s Newco listing – 2/1
  • None of the above will happen in 2017 – Evens

Place your bets and good luck!

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