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Alpha Returns Group plc (ARGP)

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Thursday 12 June, 2014

Alpha Returns Group plc

Alpha Returns Group plc : Trading Update

Alpha Returns Group plc : Trading Update

Alpha Returns Group PLC
("Alpha Returns" or the "Company")

12 June 2014

Trading Update

Alpha Returns, the AIM traded investing company focusing on investments in high-growth Asian economies, is pleased to announce a trading update ahead of its preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2013 which are expected to be announced on or around 20 June 2014. Subject to any audit adjustments, these are expected to show pre-tax losses on continuing operations of approximately £330,000 (2012: losses £364,000 after an exceptional credit of £469,000) with administrative costs reduced by over 50 per cent.  2012 also saw losses from discontinued operations in excess of £470,000. Total assets at 2013 year end amounted to £990,000 with cash of £570,000.

During 2013 the Company completed its CVA, raised approximately £1,040,000 in new equity (before expenses) at prices of between 0.15p and 0.9p per share and implemented its investing policy, acquiring an 18.75% holding in Singapore based IT service solution provider Telistar Solutions Pte. Ltd. ("Telistar") for some £300,000 and a small portfolio of HK traded stocks for £49,000.

Investments made during 2014 to date include:

  • A conditional investment of £903,000 (of which £436,000 paid in cash with the balance in new Alpha Returns shares) for an indirect 30% shareholding in Hong Kong stockbrokers MY Securities Limited ("MY Securities") via a BVI investment vehicle Riche Bright Group Ltd.;
  • The acquisition of a further 15% shareholding in Telistar for £227,000 satisfied by the issue of new Alpha Returns shares; and
  • A conditional investment of £1,055,000 (of which £451,000 paid in cash with the balance in new Alpha Returns shares to be issued on completion) for a 30% indirect shareholding in Shenzhen MaxLife Catering Management Ltd. ("MaxLife"), a start-up coffee chain business in the PRC, via BVI investment vehicle Oriental Ventures Ltd. ("Oriental Ventures").

In March 2014 the Company raised a further £725,000 at a price of 1.3p per share. Deferred consideration of £206,000 is due by end 2014 for an additional 18.75% holding in Telistar.

Telistar continues to perform to the Board's expectations and in its year ended 31 December 2013 made an unaudited pre-tax profit of S$188,000, an increase of over 47% over 2012 pre-tax profits of S$128,000 on turnover of S$4.435 million (up 46% on 2012 S$ 3.035 million). The business is expanding into mainland China this year.

Oriental Ventures continues to progress its acquisition of MaxLife and completion is expected to occur within the nine month timeframe set out in the original investment announcement on 31 March.

Change of control discussions with the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission relating to the approval of new substantial shareholders in MY Securities continues. The completion date for the investment is likely to be extended to 30 September 2014.

In order to strengthen the Company's financial position and to provide the Company with funds to take advantage of potential investment opportunities within the Asia-Pacific region expeditiously, the Company is proposing to conduct an equity fund raise for approximately £650,000. A further announcement will be made in due course. 

-ends-

For further information:

Alpha Returns Group plc
Christopher Neo, Executive Director                                                         020 3286 6388

ZAI Corporate Finance Limited (Nomad)                                               020 7060 2220
Peter Trevelyan Clark / Ivy Wang

Peterhouse Corporate Finance (Broker)                                                020 7220 9797
Lucy Williams / Duncan Vasey




This announcement is distributed by NASDAQ OMX Corporate Solutions on behalf of NASDAQ OMX Corporate Solutions clients.
The issuer of this announcement warrants that they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the information contained therein.
Source: Alpha Returns Group plc via Globenewswire

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