Small caps round-up: AEA Tech, Orchid, Accsys Tech...

Companies featured in this round-up: AEA Technology, Orhid, Accsys Technologies, TXO

Bombed-out stock AEA Technology said trading since the beginning of October 2011 has been more or less in line with expectations, which will come as a relief to shareholders after a November profit warning led to the exit of the Chief Executive Officer.

The energy and sustainability consultancy said that the new management team at its troublesome US subsidiary PPC is now in place and focusing on improving the unit's performance. Meanwhile, performances at ERG, the firm's Boston based business, and AEA Europe have remained broadly in line with expectations in the second half of the group's financial year. Both ERG and AEA Europe have continued to win new business as expected with further orders won from both UK and US government departments. Shares rose 11.11% to 0.35p.

Bid talks are off at Orchid Developments, the Bulgaria-focused property company. Having received an approach from a suitor on Valentine's Day, the two parties have decided not to take the relationship further. Shares fell 25.53% to 4.38p.

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Accsys Technologies, an environmental science and technology company, has decreased operating costs by 14% for the financial year to December 2011. Revenue from its Accoya wood business increased 40% compared to the same quarter in the prior year and by 24% compared to the previous quarter of the current year. Cash levels dropped by €1.6m to €25.5m at September 30th, which the firm said marks a significant improvement in control over working capital compared to last year when the cash balance decreased by €4.5m during the equivalent period. Shares rose 4.55% to €0.17.

Oil company TXO has announced that Empire Energy Corporation International, in which TXO has a $1.5m convertible loan note, is applying for exploration licences with the intent to develop identified Tasmania Basin black coal potential. Empire is planning to award TXO 10% carried interest in the ordinary share capital in the Tasmania Basin project, as a reward for its past commitment. Empire has applied for two exploration licences of the Mt Lloyd area. Shares gained 3.57% to 0.72p.

Botswana Diamonds has raised £1.47m, after expenses, through the placing of over 37m new ordinary shares at 4p per share - an 11% discount the the 4.5p close price on Februrary 16th. The majority of the net proceeds of the Fundraising will be deployed on the Company's exploration projects in Botswana, Cameroon and Zimbabwe. Shares fell 8.33% to 4.12p.