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OBC - Online Blockchain News Story

37.5p -1.5  -3.8%

Last Trade - 23/07/21

Sector
Financials
Size
Micro Cap
Market Cap £7.75m
Enterprise Value £7.37m
Revenue £121k
Position in Universe 1629th / 1805

Online Blockchain - Half-year Report

Thu 4th March, 2021 7:00am
RNS Number : 0973R
Online Blockchain PLC
04 March 2021
 

4 March 2021

For immediate release

 

Online Blockchain PLC

("Online" or the "Group")

 

Unaudited Interim Results for the Six Months Ended 31 December 2020

 

Online today announces unaudited interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2020 (the "Period").

 

CEO's Statement

We are pleased to report that since the last update, the blockchain ecosystem has experienced revitalised interest, driven largely by the recovery and increase in the value of Bitcoin, Ethereum and various other crypto projects and assets. 

We were approached at the end of 2020, and again earlier this year, to raise capital to support our development and we took the opportunity to secure sufficient funds to meet our needs over the medium term and provide additional resources to broaden our development efforts. The funding enables us to continue our development and we believe that we have a small group of highly skilled staff capable of delivering innovative work. 

In addition to our previously reported projects that continue to make progress, we believe that the Umbria decentralised finance ("DeFi") development is our most promising project. DeFi itself is a disruptive segment of blockchain and there is the potential for OBC and Umbria to make an impact.  

We do remain however, cautious with our cash resources as crypto is a volatile asset segment and it is possible at any time that blockchain may be about to enter another cycle of boom, bubble and bust. The potential upside we expect will be delivered in the medium to long term rather in the shorter time frame that so many new entrants and investors in this this field expect. While impossible to accurately predict the short-term outlook for blockchain based assets and businesses, we continue to believe that the blockchain technologies we are working with are part of a development as potentially fundamentally promising as computing in the 1970's and the internet in the 1990s. 

There remains, nevertheless, a significant challenge from institutional resistance and scepticism to emerging blockchain technology businesses. At times, it is hard to come to any conclusion other than that blockchain is not yet welcome reflecting the position of established 'gatekeepers' whose commercial position is threatened by blockchain. The disintermediation of gatekeepers is blockchain's great power as it enables efficiencies by digitising business processes and opening up markets to new entrants by removing the need for the extensive overheads that support legacy business. As illustration, neither NYSE or Nasdaq currently enable the exchange of crypto assets and the regulations have not yet permitted the listing of a Bitcoin ETF while, as I write, Coinbase a major crypto exchange, plans to list on Nasdaq at a market valuation which is expected to exceed the combined market value of Intercontinental Exchange Inc (the parent of the NYSE Stock Exchange) and Nasdaq Inc, demonstrating the potential challenge to legacy exchanges' supremacy.  

Whilst being wary of these institutional and regulatory challenges, we are hopeful of continuing  progress for our existing products in the months ahead and for new developments. We remain excited at the prospects for blockchain, irrespective of the value of bitcoin in 2021, and our plans to develop a potentially major blockchain protocol. 

 

ADVFN PLC - Chief Executive's Statement

These are very uncertain times, but as I have often alluded to, times of uncertainty are good for ADVFN. People become more engaged with their investments when the future looks difficult and the rolling confinements and the new work-from-home environments ("WFH") have provided impetus to our audience's desire to trade and invest. Market volatility has also helped. Counter-intuitively it is not necessarily a bullish period that has helped drive ADVFN revenue, because it turns out that solid profits for investors only fuels complacency and complacency is not good for our sales.

 

Advertising and subscriptions have been growing and so revenue, which sees us producing a solid bottom-line profit. At the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020, a sudden and unexpected drop in advertising sales, coupled with a lack of subscription growth, caused us to re-evaluate our processes and reorganise the business from top to bottom.

With great good fortune, we decided to become a fully 'WFH' enterprise with a new, much reduced cost base and re-engineered business processes around the turn of that year. This dramatic change was almost complete when the pandemic started, which by good fortune we were then pre-prepared for.

 

This intersection of events has meant we have made good progress across 2020 with the end of the first half showing a profit of £264,000. At this stage there seems no end in sight to the disruption of the pandemic and even with an end of the pandemic itself, be it hopefully soon, the global economic aftermath will, we believe, be with us for years to come. We will therefore remain an important destination for those wishing to actively navigate the trying times ahead and we feel a period of investor complacency is not a prospect for the foreseeable future. As such we believe that we will continue to grow for the foreseeable future.

 

While we expect growth at a similar pace in the coming half, our strategy is to be very conservative  and we will expend our energies growing our platform's capacity rather than looking to broaden our audience. We are very optimistic about our near and medium-term prospects, but it seems foolish to contemplate anything but a conservative risk profile to at least the year end.

 

While we cannot take credit for fate suddenly providing us with a strong hand, we can lay claim to having reshaped ADVFN during the pandemic's disruption into a profitable business that looks set for a strong performance in 2021. 

 

 

ADVFN Plc - Financial performance for the six months ended 31 December 2020

Key financial performance for the period has been summarised as follows:

 

Six Months ended

Six Months ended

 

31 December 2020

31 December 2019

 

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

Revenue

4,233

3,748

Profit / (loss) for the period

264

(399)

Operating profit / (loss)

277

(397)

Loss per share - basic (see note 3)

1.03 p

(1.56 p)

 

 

Clement Chambers

CEO

4 March 2021

 

 

 

For further information please contact: 

 

 

 

Online Blockchain PLC

Clem Chambers

 

+44 (0) 20 3868 6702

 

 

Beaumont Cornish Limited (Nominated Adviser)

www.beaumontcornish.com

 

 

 

Roland Cornish/Michael Cornish 

 

+44 (0) 207 628 3396

Stefania Barbaglio

 

stefania@cassiopeia-ltd.com

 

 

     

The information contained within this announcement is deemed to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014. The person who arranged for the release of this announcement on behalf of the Group was Clem Chambers, Director.

 

 

A copy of this announcement is available on the Group's website, at: www.onlineblockchain.io

 

 

Consolidated income statement

for the six months ended 31 December 2020

 

 

Six months ended

Six months ended

Year ended

 

 

31 December

2020

31 December

2019

30 June

 2020

 

 

Unaudited

Unaudited

Audited

 

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

Note

 

 

 

Revenue

 

56

44

109

 

 

 

 

 

Share based payment

 

(5)

-

-

Other administrative expenses

 

(173)

(116)

(250)

 

 

 

 

 

Total administrative expenses

 

(178)

(116)

(250)

 

 

 

 

 

Operating loss

 

(122)

(72)

(141)

 

 

 

 

 

Finance expense

 

(1)

(1)

(2)

Impairment of investment in Encryptid Gaming

 

-

-

(18)

Share of post-tax profit/(loss) of equity accounted associate

 

47

(71)

(40)

 

 

 

 

 

Loss before taxation

 

(76)

(144)

(201)

Taxation

 

-

-

-

Loss for the period attributable to shareholders of the parent

 

(76)

(144)

(201)

 

 

 

 

 

Loss per share

 

 

 

 

Basic loss per ordinary share

3

(0.86 p)

(1.66 p)

(2.32 p)

Diluted loss per ordinary share

3

(0.86 p)

(1.66 p)

(2.32 p)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Consolidated statement of comprehensive income

for the six months ended 31 December 2020

 

 

Six months ended

Six months ended

Year ended

 

 

31 December

2020

31 December

2019

30 June

 2020

 

 

Unaudited

Unaudited

Audited

 

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

 

(76)

(144)

(201)

 

 

 

 

 

Other comprehensive income:

 

 

 

 

Items that will be reclassified subsequently to profit or loss:

 

 

 

 

Exchange differences on translation of foreign operations

 

(4)

-

1

 

 

 

 

 

Total other comprehensive income

 

(4)

-

1

 

 

 

 

 

Total comprehensive income for the year attributable to shareholders of the parent

 

(80)

(144)

(200)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Consolidated balance sheet

at 31 December 2020

 

 

 

31 December

2020

31 December

2019

30 June

 2020

 

 

Unaudited

Unaudited

Audited

 

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

Assets

Note

 

 

 

Non-current assets

 

 

 

 

Property, plant and equipment

 

11

46

30

Intangibles

 

-

3

-

Other receivables

 

6

6

6

Investment accounted for using the equity method

4

 

1,183

 

1,104

 

1,137

Other equity investments

 

18

36

18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1,218

1,195

1,191

Current assets

 

 

 

 

Trade and other receivables            

 

16

117

114

Cash and cash equivalents

 

384

35

17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

400

152

131

 

 

 

 

 

Total assets

 

1,618

1,347

1,322

 

 

 

 

 

Equity and liabilities

 

 

 

 

Equity

 

 

 

 

Issued capital

 

3,383

3,292

3,292

Share premium

 

3,464

3,155

3,155

Share based payment reserve

 

69

64

64

Foreign exchange reserve

 

(3)

-

1

Retained earnings

 

(5,346)

(5,210)

(5,269)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1,567

1,301

1,243

 

 

 

 

 

Current liabilities

 

 

 

 

Borrowings - bank overdraft

 

-

-

27

Borrowings - lease liabilities

 

5

-

13

Trade and other payables

 

46

46

39

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

51

46

79

 

 

 

 

 

Total equity and liabilities

 

1,618

1,347

1,322

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Statement of changes in equity

at 31 December 2020

 

Share

 capital

Share premium

Share based payment reserve

Foreign exchange reserve

Retained earnings

Total

equity

£'000

£'000

£'000

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,292

3,155

64

-

(5,072)

1,439

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net asset movements of associate

-

-

-

-

6

6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-

-

-

-

(144)

(144)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,292

3,155

64

-

(5,210)

1,301

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net asset movements of associate

-

-

-

-

(2)

(2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

-

-

-

-

(57)

(57)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other comprehensive income

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exchange differences on translation of foreign operations

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

1

 

-

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total other comprehensive income

-

-

-

1

-

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total comprehensive loss for the period

-

-

-

1

(57)

(56)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,292

3,155

64

1

(5,269)

1,243

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Issue of shares

91

309

-

-

-

400

Equity settled share options

-

-

5

-

-

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

91

309

5

-

-

405

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net asset movements of associate

-

-

-

-

(1)

(1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

-

-

-

-

(76)

(76)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other comprehensive income

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exchange differences on translation of foreign operations

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

(4)

 

-

 

(4)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total other comprehensive income

-

-

-

(4)

(76)

(80)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-

-

-

(4)

(76)

(80)

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,383

3,464

69

(3)

(5,346)

1,567

 

Consolidated cash flow statement

for the six months ended 31 December 2020

 

 

 

Six months ended

Six months ended

Year ended

 

 

31 December 2020

31 December 2019

30 June 2020

 

 

Unaudited

Unaudited

Audited

 

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

 

 

Cash flows from operating activities

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

 

(76)

(144)

(201)

 

 

 

 

 

Add back (profit)/loss from equity accounted associate

 

(47)

75

40

Net finance charge in the income statement

 

1

-

2

Depreciation of property, plant & equipment

 

19

11

20

Share based payments

 

5

-

-

Impairment of investment in Encryptid Gaming

 

-

-

18

Decrease/(increase) in trade and other receivables

 

98

(22)

(19)

Increase/(decrease) in trade and other payables

 

7

(15)

(22)

 

 

 

 

 

Net cash used by operating activities

 

7

(95)

(162)

Income tax receivable

 

-

-

-

 

 

 

 

 

Net cash used by operating activities

 

7

(95)

(162)

 

 

 

 

 

Cash flows from financing activities

 

 

 

 

Draw down bank overdraft

 

-

-

27

Issue equity shares

 

400

-

-

Interest paid

 

(1)

-

(2)

 

 

 

 

 

Net cash generated/(used) by financing activities

 

399

-

25

 

 

 

 

 

Cash flows from investing activities

 

 

 

 

Overdraft repaid

 

(27)

-

-

Lease liability repaid

 

(8)

-

-

Payments for property plant and equipment

 

-

(21)

(1)

Payments for intangible assets

 

-

(3)

-

 

 

 

 

 

Net cash used by investing activities

 

(35)

(24)

(1)

 

 

 

 

 

Decrease in cash and cash equivalents

 

371

(119)

(138)

Foreign exchange differences

 

(4)

-

1

Cash and cash equivalents at the start of the period

 

17

154

154

 

 

 

 

 

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period

 

384

35

17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes to the interim statements

 

1.             Legal status and activities

 

Online Blockchain Plc is principally acting as an incubator and developer of businesses in internet and information-based technologies including developers, administrators and custodians of blockchains and cryptocurrencies.

 

Online Blockchain Plc is a public limited liability company incorporated and domiciled in England and Wales. The address of its registered office is Suite 28, Ongar Business Centre, The Gables, Fyfield Road, Ongar, Essex, CM5 0GA.

 

Online Blockchain Plc is quoted on the Alternative Investment Market ("AIM") of the London Stock Exchange.

 

2.             Basis of preparation

 

The unaudited consolidated financial information is for the six month period ended 31 December 2020. The financial information does not include all the information required for full annual financial statements and should be read in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements of the Group for the year ended 30 June 2020, which were prepared under IFRS as adopted by the European Union (EU).

 

The accounting policies adopted in this report are consistent with those of the annual financial statements for the year to 30 June 2020 except as described below.

 

The financial statements are presented in Sterling (£) rounded to the nearest thousand except where specified.

 

Going concern

The interim financial information has been prepared on the going concern basis which assumes the Group will continue in existence for the foreseeable future. The Directors have prepared a detailed forecast of future trading and, as our products continue to build as planned, the Directors believe that trading will gradually improve. This improvement in trading and the resulting increased income over the next 12 months will mean that the current bank balance will stabilize and then increase. In addition, a placing was made in December 2020 resulting in cash subscriptions of £362,000 net of commission and other costs.

 

Our reaction to the onset of Covid-19 has been to examine the potential impact of the virus on our operations and our market. We need to ensure that the welfare of our staff and the continued provision of our service is our priority. We are already a company of home-based staff and we have looked at reasonable worst-case scenarios and discussed potential mitigating strategies to ensure the continuity of our service. In addition to the placing mentioned above, the Group has access to an overdraft facility amounting to £50,000 and, if necessary, the option is available to raise further funds on the market or, ultimately, to sell shares in ADVFN Plc. Accordingly, the Directors have prepared these financial statements on the going concern basis.  

 

The interim financial information has not been audited nor has it been reviewed under ISRE 2410 of the Auditing Practices Board. The financial information presented does not constitute statutory accounts as defined by section 434 of the Companies Act 2006. The Group's statutory accounts for the year to 30 June 2020 have been filed with the Registrar of Companies. The auditors, Saffery Champness LLP reported on those accounts and their report was unqualified and did not contain a statement under section 498(2) or Section 498(3) of the Companies Act 2006.

 

Risks and uncertainties

the Group continuously assesses and monitors the key risks of the business.  The risks identified in the financial statements dated 30 June 2020 have not substantially changed.

 

Notes to the interim statements
 

               

3.             Loss per ordinary share

 

Six months to

Six months to

Year to

 

31 Dec 2020

31 Dec 2019

30 June 2020

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

 

Loss for the period

(76)

(144)

(201)

 

 

 

 

 

Shares

Shares

Shares

Weighted average number of Ordinary shares

8,800,688

8,662,348

8,662,348

Dilutive effect of options

-

-

-

Weighted average Ordinary shares for diluted earnings per share

 

8,800,688

 

8,662,348

 

8,662,348

 

 

 

 

Loss per share

 

 

 

Basic earnings per share (pence)

(0.86 p)

(1.66 p)

(2.32 p)

Diluted earnings per share (pence)

(0.86 p)

(1.66 p)

(2.32 p)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where a loss is reported for the period the diluted loss per share does not differ from the basic loss per share as the exercise of share options would have the effect of reducing the loss per share and is therefore not dilutive under the terms of IAS 33.

 

In addition, where a profit has been recorded but the average share price for the period remains under the exercise price of a specific grant of options, the existence of those options is not dilutive.

 

4.             Investments in associate undertakings

 

 

Six months ended

Six months ended

Year

 ended

 

31 December 2020

31 December 2019

30 June

 2020

 

£'000

£'000

£'000

 

 

 

 

Listed investments at cost

868

868

868

 

 

 

 

Listed investments at market value

875

874

737

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total net assets of ADVFN Plc

1,759

1,319

1,500

Percentage ownership interest held by the group

17.92%

17.92%

17.92%

 

 

 

 

Share of net assets of ADVFN Plc

315

236

269

Cost of investment in ADVFN Plc

868

868

868

 

 

 

 

 

1,183

1,104

1,137

 

                The investment in ADVFN plc is treated for the purposes of financial reporting as an associate due to the common directorships held between ADVFN plc and Online Blockchain plc and the resulting level of significant influence over the associate. It is an investment accounted for using the equity method.

 

Online Blockchain Plc owns 17.92% (2019: 17.92%) of ADVFN plc which is incorporated in England and Wales and whose principal activity is the development and provision of financial information, primarily via the internet, research services and the development and exploitation of ancillary internet sites.

               

                The carrying value of the associate in the balance sheet of Online Blockchain Plc is £1,183,000 and is based on the share of the balance sheet of the associate company.   

 

 

Notes to the interim statements

 

 

5.            Events after the balance sheet date

 

On 2 February 2021 the Company announced a placing of 2,717,391 Ordinary 5.0p shares at a price of 36.8p per share. This resulted in subscriptions of £950,000 net of commission and other costs. In addition warrants have been issued to participants in the placing at the rate of 1 warrant for every 2 placing shares.

There are no other events of significance occurring after the balance sheet date to report.

 

6.             Dividends

 

The directors do not recommend the payment of a dividend.

 

 

7.            Financial statements

               

                Copies of these accounts are available from Online Blockchain Plc's registered office at Suite 28, Ongar Business Centre, The Gables, Fyfield Road, Ongar, Essex, CM5 0GA or from Companies House, Crown Way, Maindy, Cardiff, CF14 3UZ.

 

                www.companieshouse.gov.uk

 

                and from the Online Blockchain plc website:

 

www.onlineblockchain.io

 

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