The founders of buy now pay later service Afterpay are selling around $100 million worth of stock to new investors alongside a $300 million capital raising by the company to fund its expansion into the United States, Colin Kruger reports. In an announcement to the ASX Monday morning, Afterpay said it is undertaking a fully underwritten institutional share placement to raise a minimum of $300 million with the sale of 13.8 million new shares at a floor price of $21.75. This represents a 10 per cent discount to the last trading price and is designed to help fuel the growth the company is aiming for in the US market this year. "Our experience to date confirms the US scale-up opportunity is clear, supporting an accelerated investment in the global opportunity," the company said in its announcement.
Finance Group Ltd (AFG):
Australian Financial Group has today unveiled a reshuffle of its management to cope with changes in the sector, and a renewed focus on its Securities business. In a note to the market it said the changes were “in preparation for the heightened industry and regulatory engagement required in the post-Royal Commission environment”. Under a new structure, former general manager residential and broker Mark Hewitt will take on the role of general manager industry and partnership development while home loans general manager Chris Slater will take leadership of sales and distribution. Adding to that, the company said it was investing in its AFG Securities business, what recently reached $2 billion under management. “The external forces impacting our business across the past 18 months have underlined why it is crucial to constantly engage with the broader industry and continue to position AFG as taking a leadership role in the market with both regulators and our lending partners,” chief David Bailey said.
Donaco International Ltd (DNA):
This morning Asian casino operator Donaco Limited revealed it has appointed former chief operating officer of Star Gold Coast, Paul Arbuckle, as its new chief executive. This pushes Benjamin Lim and Gerald Tan out of the job. Meanwhile the Donaco board has announced an extraordinary general meeting requisitioned by shareholders will be held on 18 July in Sydney. The board is now backing a move by an activist shareholder to remove Donaco founder, Joey Lim, and his brother, Benjamin Lim, as directors of the company. The meeting has been requisitioned by shareholder (and Vocus founder) James Spenceley, who holds nearly 5 per cent of Donaco shares, and wants to remove the Lims from the company to unlock its value. Donaco shares are up 26.3 per cent today to a six-month high of 12 cents.
Jupiter Mines Ltd (JMS):
Jupiter Mines’ Tshipi project has signed an agreement with South32 to mine the barrier pillar between their two manganese mines in South Africa. Tshipi will mine between its Borwa mine and South32’s Mamatwan mine, commencing August 1 until the ore mining has been completed and respective rehabilitation obligations have been met. “Tshipi’s ore extraction period is expected to be 24 months. A revised mining plan and budget is currently being prepared and the Company will advise any material change,” Jupiter told the market this morning.
Shine Corporate Ltd (SHJ):
Shine Corporate and Slater and Gordon have denied reports the two are in merger discussions, saying no such transaction was proposed or imminent. It comes after reports that the top second and third plaintiff law firms were discussing a tie up. “The Company advises that no such transaction is proposed or imminent. The Company has, at all times, met its continuous disclosure obligations,” Shine said in a statement to the market.
Star Entertainment Group Ltd(SGR):
Star Entertainment Group is down 15.7 per cent after issuing a profit downgrade this morning. Casino giant Star Entertainment Group has blamed falling demand from wealthy international gamblers and weaker domestic growth for a forecast downgrade in profit. The Star announced to the ASX on Tuesday that full-year normalised earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were forecast to be down up to $18 million, or 3 per cent, on last financial year. A continued decline in revenue from super-rich Chinese VIPs is driving the slowdown, as weak economic conditions in China and the US-China trade war affect market sentiment.
Vocus Group Ltd (VOC):
Telecommunications company Vocus will open its books exclusively to AGL Energy after the energy company lobbed a $3 billion takeover bid for the business. The $4.85 a share cash offer means the telco will enter into the due diligence process for the fourth time in two years, following three takeover bids that were subsequently withdrawn. Shares last traded at $3.83. Vocus managing director and chief executive Kevin Russell said in a statement that AGL returned with a proposal to buy the business after Swedish private equity firm EQT ditched a $3.3 billion bid during due diligence. AGL and Vocus were previously unable to agree to due diligence terms. "There is a clear market opportunity for Vocus, which is generating significant interest in our business and our assets," Mr Russell said in a statement.
Woodside Petroleum Limited (WPL):
Woodside Petroleum forecast annual production at the lower end of earlier guidance after delaying the restart of its Pluto liquefied natural gas facility following planned maintenance. Woodside said the mixed refrigerant compressor at Pluto experienced a vibration when efforts were made to resume output, prompting management to push back the timetable for bringing the facility online again to the end of this month. “Woodside has made arrangements to meet obligations to our customers, including the purchase of third-party cargoes,” the Perth-based energy company said. Woodside had previously targeted production in 2019 in a range of 88 million to 94 million barrels of oil equivalent.