If only you'd invested in
Sopheon (Aim: SPE) is a company that provides "product lifecycle management" software for businesses. It is based in Minneapolis and listed on London's Aim. Recent strategic and operational changes, along with new product releases, have led to a 37% rise in revenue for the first half of 2016, moving the company from a loss of $0.5m to a profit of $1.5m. This performance has been reflected in the share price, which has soared by more than 400% in the past year.
Be glad you didn't
Rotherham butcher Crawshaw Group (Aim: CRAW) operates 49 shops in the Midlands and north of England, selling fresh meat and pre-prepared food. The past couple of years have seen an aggressive expansion plan, but a recent revamp of the fresh meat range didn't go down well. Although turnover rose 29% and gross profit by 31% in the six months to 31 July, management was "very disappointed" by like-for-like sales. The share price has plummeted by more than 50% in the past month.
Ben studied modern languages at London University's Queen Mary College. After dabbling unhappily in local government finance for a while, he went to work for The Scotsman newspaper in Edinburgh. The launch of the paper's website, scotsman.com, in the early years of the dotcom craze, saw Ben move online to manage the Business and Motors channels before becoming deputy editor with responsibility for all aspects of online production for The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and the Edinburgh Evening News websites, along with the papers' Edinburgh Festivals website.
Ben joined MoneyWeek as website editor in 2008, just as the Great Financial Crisis was brewing. He has written extensively for the website and magazine, with a particular emphasis on alternative finance and fintech, including blockchain and bitcoin. As an early adopter of bitcoin, Ben bought when the price was under $200, but went on to spend it all on foolish fripperies.
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