Shares in Cenkos Securities PLC fell 18.28% on Aug. 12 after the U.K. stockbroker said first-half revenues were lower than in the year-ago period, citing a "disappointing" first quarter that saw investor sentiment significantly impacted by market volatility.
The company noted, however, that its second-half results are expected to be "much stronger," adding that it is "currently working on several transactions" and that its potential pipeline gives it optimism for the rest of the year.
Cenkos' board also confirmed that several employees within the firm's investment companies team have tendered their resignations, which are expected to have a limited impact on revenues and net contribution for full year 2019.
Meanwhile, Jim Durkin will begin as an executive director and CEO of Cenkos, effective immediately, after receiving regulatory approval from the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority. Durkin — a former CEO of Cenkos — will retake the role from Anthony Hotson, who replaced him in 2017.
Durkin's return to Cenkos has been opposed by activist investor Crystal Amber, which holds a 7% stake in the company, The Times of London noted. Crystal Amber's head, Richard Bernstein, said the firm wants Cenkos to lead the consolidation of the sector and acquire small- to mid-cap brokers, warning that Durkin's skill set may not be a match for the strategy.
Cenkos will announce its first-half results in late September.