Small Talk: DCD ready to switch on to high-growth programme

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DCD Media has trans-formed itself over the past three months and this process will be rounded off today when the TV programme producer and distributor tells the City that trading in the current year is well ahead of expectations.

The news will accompany interim results from DCD, formerly Digital Classics. These will boast a 50 per cent jump in gross profit to more than £1m, along with a 200 per cent rise in turnover to £3.7m. The performance of DCD should be even more impressive during the second half of its year as the contribution from three recent acquisitions starts to kick in.

In December, the company bought Box TV, the production company behind the BBC's recent Sweeney Todd dramatisation starring Ray Winstone, and NBD TV, a rock and pop music programme distributor. This was quickly followed by the reverse takeover of Done and Dusted, a maker of rock concert videos.

Analysts are expecting dramatic growth from DCD over the coming years. Research published by Evolution Securities earlier this month predicts that the group, chaired by former Channel 5 boss David Elstein, will be making profits of more than £3m by the end of 2007. At Friday's closing price of 1.09p, this leaves the company trading at a mere nine times forward earnings.

Kalahari is no desert

Making its way to AIM tomorrow is Kalahari Minerals. Via a placing of 40 million shares at 15p, the company hopes to raise £6m of fresh cash to develop its copper and uranium assets in Namibia. The group's sites are at various stages of development. From previous work, it has been established as fact that Kalahari is sitting on a copper find. How big it is will become apparent only after upcoming studies by the company have been completed.

Acting as an adviser to Kalahari is Ambrian Partners, a growing stockbroker solely focused on the AIM natural resource sector. Ambrian looks to be a growing force on the junior market. It has won 22 new listed clients in the last 12 months, 10 of which were poached from other advisers. The broker is owned by Golden Prospect, a mining-focused investment company.

Datong wires crossed

It is never good when a company issues a profits warning just six months after its float. This is exactly what happened at Datong Electronics, the designer and maker of surveillance equipment.

To blame was the delay of contracts from major clients in the US and UK. In the wake of the alert, its shares lost a third of their value. But it is important to emphasise that these contracts were merely delayed and not cancelled. It is likely Datong will nail them down some time later this year.

During the tail end of last week, the group's stock perked up a little after Paul Lever, the chairman, picked up 11,000 shares at 93p. This came after a slew of director purchases in January. Datong is worth keeping an eye on.

StatPro raring to go

Annual results from StatPro today will not disappoint investors. The company, which provides software that helps asset managers better analyse trends in global financial markets, is tipped to unveil a 70 per cent jump in profits to £1.7m. A maiden dividend is also likely from the company, which is highly cash generative and already boasts a healthy pile of money on its balance sheet.

StatPro has a good following from institutional investors, many of whom use its software, thanks to its strong base of recurring revenues. More than 80 per cent of its sales come from the same clients year in, year out, making it easy to forecast the company's earnings and future growth. Clients include HSBC, Credit Suisse, Invesco and Rothschild.

StatPro floated in 2000 at 80p. Its shares collapsed later that year as the dot.com bust took hold. But, after hitting an all-time low of 12p during the tail end of 2002, they have enjoyed a steady recovery to close at 73.5p on Friday.

Sandvine is Sir Terry's latest float

The Welsh billionaire Sir Terry Matthews will float his latest venture on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) next week. The technology entrepreneur, who in recent years has brought March Networks and Ubiquity Software to the junior market, will list Sandvine Corporation tomorrow. The issue was eight times subscribed so analysts expect the shares to soar during their maiden session.

Sandvine will raise £20m of new money from the float at 75p, giving it a market value of £86m. The group produces broadband network management equipment which helps the likes of Wanadoo provide an improved and more cost-effective service to its subscribers. Sandvine says it is fast heading towards profitability thanks to explosive sales growth. Over the past year alone, the group's revenues are up 390 per cent.

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