The Company announces its audited final results for the year ended 31 March 2019.
Successful completion of a capital raise in March and April 2019 supported by Company's major shareholders to enable further development of the Group's strategy, including the ongoing application for a UK banking licence by Recognise.
Recognise has made progress towards its objective of receiving authorisation to accept deposits by the latter part of 2020. Currently, the team is working to submit an application to the Regulator by the end of 2019, after which we will embark on an institutional fund raise.
Our newly acquired financial services intermediary, Acorn to Oaks Financial Services Limited, has set up a commercial finance broking division, so expanding its offering to the SME market.
The Group's loan and asset leasing business had a successful year with CAML making a first-time profit and PFS, our property bridging finance company, being launched successfully.
Milton Homes business adversely affected by the general slow-down in the housing market and a reduction in the number of property reversions but generated £1.3m cash during the year.
£12.65m was raised through the issue of 10,120,000 ordinary shares and £2.05m through the issue of 6% Unsecured Convertible Loan Notes 2021 at par in March following capital raising exercise with further £0.5m raised through an issue of ordinary shares in April.
Loss before tax £3.6m after absorbing costs of £1.7m associated with applying for UK banking licence and acquisition of Acorn to Oaks Financial Services Limited (2018: loss before tax £1.1m after absorbing costs of £1.1m associated with applying for UK banking licence and acquisitions).
Consolidated NAV per share attributable to shareholders 83p (2018: 81p).
An updated corporate presentation will be published on the website shortly.
Michael Goldstein, CEO, commented:
"This has been another year of considerable progress for the City of London Group. We have continued to focus on implementing our long term growth strategy of serving the UK SME market and increasing the financial strength of the Group. We have built a very high calibre NED team for Recognise, and we remain confident that we will be able to submit an application to the Regulator by the end of 2019, after which we will embark on an institutional capital raise.
"We have completed the acquisition of Acorn to Oaks Financial Services Limited, which provides complementary services to the Group companies, and our lending businesses CAML/ PFL and PFS both had successful years and generated profits.
"Overall, looking forward, through the evolution of our business, we are well placed to deliver on our strategic objectives and to deliver value for our shareholders."