By Tom Winnifrith, The Sheriff of AIM | Thursday 6 May 2021
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.
Needless to say, the morally bankrupt PR firm of Buchanan has still not replied to an email from Tuesday night regarding forecasts for its technically insolvent client Bidstack (BIDS). Presumably it is working hard finding a journalist to smear and that is its priority. When Steph Watson says she will reply to an email, what she clearly means is “I am a lying PR harpy and will do nothing of the sort.” But, without the assistance of mendacious Steph, I now have confirmation that house broker Stifel has indeed slashed forecasts which appears to be a clear breach of AIM Rules 10 and 11.
As I noted yesterday, the forecast cuts are not trivial. For 2021, the sales forecast is down from £9 million to £4 million which a retained broker would not have done without company guidance. And that means the company really should have issued a formal warning of lack of sales and increased losses. Stifel has indeed upped 2021 forecast losses from £6.76 million to £7.9 million. 2022 sales forecasts have been slashed to £9 million which equates to an increased forecast loss of £8.1 million.
According to Bloomberg, these new numbers came out on 20 April, 2 days before the AGM when FY guidance was unchanged from the prelim announcement in the formal RNS statement. On 20 April, the shares fell 6%. How is a house broker saying one thing – guided by the company – when the company says another, not a total breach of AIM Rules?
That is one issue that AIM Regulation really must be looking at and which must surely result in both a formal warning being issued by Bidstack and possibly a sanction from the useless regulators. The other is that Bidstack is, right now, almost out of cash and just weeks away from insolvency. It needs a bailout placing but who in their right mind would invest in this POS given its lack of sales visibility, its track record of lying, its cash crisis and its blatant disregard for AIM Rules?