April 30, 2021, 5:06 a.m. EDT

AIQ shares plunge on warning over company's future

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By Adria Calatayud

Shares in AIQ Ltd. fell sharply Friday after the company said there is a material uncertainty that may cast significant doubt on its ability to continue to operate as it assesses the viability of its Alchemist Codes Sdn Bhd business.

The London-listed acquirer and developer of e-commerce businesses bought Alchemist Codes in March last year. It said it conducting a strategic review to evaluate the future of Alchemist Codes, as well as to stem the losses of the business and cut costs.

The company said its cash position gives sufficient headroom while its board conducts the process, but that the unknown outcome of the review, coupled with the uncertainty of its performance, indicate that a material uncertainty exists over its future.

AIQ said Alchemist Codes has suffered a profound impact from the coronavirus pandemic, which meant that revenue was significantly below the board's expectations.

For the year to Oct. 31, 2020, AIQ reported a widened pretax loss of 4.1 million pounds ($5.7 million) compared with GBP503,608 in the prior year. The company was hit by a write-off of its investment in Alchemist Codes.

Revenue for the year was GBP154,649 compared with nil in fiscal 2019.

Shares in AIQ at 0759 GMT were down 63% at 7.50 pence.

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