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It was pleasing to see the RNS from ISDX listed Doriemus Plc yesterday, which you can read here. It was one of the rare occasions I have seen a discounted open offer on AIM/ISDX, as opposed to the typical discounted placing that you often see. Open offers are much fairer to existing shareholders as they allow them the chance to get in on equity raises on the same terms as that of the equity raised from the new investors. This is highly commendable and something I would like to see much more on the junior markets.
The terms of Doriemus open offer give shareholders a chance to subscribe for 3 new shares for every 10 shares owned as at 5th September 2016. The subscription price is 0.035p a 22% discount to the mid-price on the 5th September of 0.045p. The share price in the two trading days since the RNS has held up and maintained at 0.045p as at 7th September.
The target for the fundraising is £865,200 i.e. which would be 100% open offer take up. What is somewhat unique about this Open Offer is that there is actually no equity being raised here from new shareholders, i.e. a placing, however if the £865,200 target is not met then Doreimus have stated in the RNS they reserve the right to seek placees for any deficit.
Who are Doriemus?
Doriemus plc is an Oil and Gas exploration company that David Lenigas, one of the junior markets more colourful characters has recently returned to as Executive Chairman. David last left Doriemus after stating he was resigning all of his directorships on the AIM market. Doriemus is no longer traded on AIM though after it was forced to delist due to not fulfilling its investment policy to the satisfaction of the regulators. It now trades solely on the ISDX market and is capitalised around £3m, perhaps being best known for its onshore licences in the Weald, most notably the infamous Horse Hill ‘Gatwick Gusher’. Doriemus holds an effective 6.5% interest in the Horse Hill PEDL137 licence.
Any Reason to be cynical?
Unfortunately on AIM/ISDX I find myself always looking for the ‘catch’ and my immediate assumption was that Doriemus was struggling to find any interest from the investment community to take part in a placement. At this end of the market it is often ‘flippers’, i.e. the short term traders who look to take part in discounted placings and then immediately dump them on the secondary market.
ISDX is not a terribly liquid market so not great for flippers. There are a limited number of brokers that trade on this market, you can though trade ISDX through Hargreaves Lansdown, one of the more popular retail brokers, but this requires telephone dealing which is a more expensive and cumbersome option. This lower liquidity means the market makers offer wide spreads, i.e. the difference between the buy price and the sell price. It can therefore be difficult to flip the stock without a high degree of risk.
I asked David Lenigas, Execuitve Chairman of Doriemus last night via Twitter why there was no placing or combined open offer and placing, the later would have the bonus of putting a floor under the amounts raised, he responded:
‘No. Thought about it [placing], but a full open offer gets what I needed done. No one can complain then… Absolutely no one’
David is also confident that the open offer will be well subscribed.
‘ I really don’t think there will be much not taken up. Plenty of extra takers around. And there is a lot going on’
I don’t have a view on Doriemus from a stock valuation point of view but well done to David Lenigas and Doiremus by setting an example for many other Junior companies with this Open Offer. In my view where significant discounts are needed to raise new equity then existing shareholders should always be able to participate on the same terms. I look forward to other companies following this example!