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CIEL Finance Cluster

CIEL Limited (SEMDEX: CIEL) is a Mauritius listed diversified industrial company. In this update we focus on CIEL’s Finance Cluster which in 1H24 accounted for 35.9% of Group (Grp) FCF, 25.8% of Grp EBITDA and 15.5% of Grp revenues. CIEL has a diversified international growth portfolio of 25 companies across 6 ‘clusters’ – Textile, Properties, Healthcare, Hotels & Resorts, Agro and Finance. CIEL’s geographical footprint spreads across 10 emerging markets in Asia and Africa. CIEL Finance 1H24A delivered 11.5% rev growth y/y and 51.4% of our revs YE24 CIEL Finance forecast;…Read More on Ciel Fianace Cluster

Ciel Post Results

CIEL Ltd. (SEMDEX: CIEL) is an investment holding company focused on six [6] sectors across 10 emerging markets (Asia and Africa). Its diversified portfolio and geographic footprint opens up opportunities in some of the fastest growing regions of the world (Asia and East Africa). Africa is the last great development growth opportunity. Mauritius remains the single largest contributor to geographical revenues. Mauritius has a stable…Read More on Ciel Ltd Post-Results

ciel last great global groth oportunities

CIEL Ltd. (SEMDEX: CIEL) is an investment holding company focused on six [6] sectors across 10 emerging markets (Asia and Africa). Its diversified portfolio and geographic footprint opens up opportunities in some of the fastest growing regions of the world (Asia and East Africa). Africa is the last great development growth opportunity. Mauritius remains the single largest contributor to geographical revenues. Mauritius has a stable…Read More on Ciel Ltd Inition

ciel core invetsment case

CIEL Ltd. (SEMDEX: CIEL) is an investment holding company focused on six [6] sectors across 10 emerging markets (Asia and Africa). Its diversified portfolio and geographic footprint opens up opportunities in some of the fastest growing regions of the world (Asia and East Africa). Africa is the last great development growth opportunity. Mauritius remains the single largest contributor to geographical revenues. Mauritius has a stable…Read More on Ciel Ltd 

london stock exchange investment research

London Stock Exchange Group (LSE: LSEG) is a financial markets infrastructure company operating across the capital markets value chain – capital issuance, pre-trade, trade execution to post-trade. LSEG appears undervalued based upon its top line growth potential and potential OPEX savings. LSEG operates via three divisions – Data & Analytics (data insight and management), Capital Markets (primary issuance and secondary market trading), and Post Trade (clearing, risk management and compliance). The Group has a robust financial position with high…READ ICE CIC NOTE

-Intercontinental Exchange investment research

Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (NYSE: ICE) is a leading provider of market infrastructure spanning major asset classes including futures, equities, fixed income and US residential mortgages. ICE’s portfolio de-risks business cycle exposure shielding it from volatility and supports consistent growth. ICE owns and operates 10 exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange Group (NYSE) and the Chicago Stock Exchange (CSE); along with 6 clearing houses across the US, UK, EU, Canada, Asia Pacific and Middle East. ICE is the 4th largest global exchange by total trading volume, 3.23bn contracts in…READ ICE CIC NOTE

asx investment case

ASX Limited (ASX: ASX) is Australia’s primary securities exchange and one of the world’s top 10 listed exchange groups by market capitalisation. Services include listings, trading, clearing and settlement, and other post-trade services. Trading products include interest rate derivatives, equities, fixed income, commodities and energy. ASX has a local monopoly in the Australian financial markets delivering attractive operating margins (EBIT adj. 1H22 64%). ASX’s balance sheet is strong – gross cash position of A$5.3bn. ASX is enjoying a significant boom period underpinned by new listings and the global growth trend of greater retail investor market participation – Nevertheless, we see hard coded reasons for…READ ASX CIC NOTE

deutsche borse investment case

Deutsche Borse AG (Xetra: DB1) is one of the largest providers of market infrastructure worldwide. The company covers the entire financial market transaction process chain – indices and analytical solutions (pre-trading), trading and clearing services and settlement, liquidity and  collateral management (post trading). It operated via four segments YE21A – Data & Analytics €0.48bn (14% of revenue), Trading & Clearing €1.81bn (51%), Fund Services €0.38bn (11%) and Security Service €0.835bn (24%). ESG related income was 7% of net revs YE21A. The diversified segments provide resilience to volatility in markets and also includes a number of high growth areas. DB1 is trading at…READ DEUTSCHE BORSE CIC NOTE

the reputation exchange investment research

The Reputation Exchange (REPX) is a fintech/esports company with a strongly differentiated social engagement neobank model using affiliate marketing. With branded prepaid cards assigned to top sporting and influencer brands planned for roll-out in the next 21 months. Since our last note REPX has received: LSE standard list sign-off, conditional US OTCQX ticker approval, its first patent approval for the singing card and increased its number of cards in production by 2023, and has launched AC Milan’s Italy REPX PayFan card in Dec 21. We have recast our revenue and cost...READ REPEX RESEARCH NOTE

fintech investment research

FCA banned the leading global crypto exchange by volume, Binance Markets, from doing business in the UK in June.  Concerns grow over cryptocurrency firms withdrawing 5MLD (anti-money laundering) applications.

On 25th June, Binance was the most liquid crypto market – the group of Binance markets hosted $17.3bn of crypto trades across its exchanges over 24 hours. The next nearest was with $10.3bn…READ FCA LEADS NEW CRYPTO CHANGES 

Fintech scandal changes auditing future

Wirecard’s lack of transparency and numerous failures have been less than favourable for Fintech, the Frankfurt market and Commerzbank (which was pushed out of the DAX 30 by the Wirecard scandal), especially as it seeks to attract business from London. Hence, the need for a review of the current regulations and accepted practices by auditors and, to some extent banks.

However, the proposed changes seem to target financial auditors more than the companies that they are auditing, e.g. Wirecard. And whilst we believe that there need to be changes, it seems less sensible to create an asymmetric penalty system, company directors should also face a higher level of responsibility and risk for…READ FINTECH CHANGES AUDITING FUTURE 

what caused the cryptocurrency market value jump

On Thurdsay April 30, 2020 the entire market value of cryptocurrencies increased by $35bn (mcap as of 04/05/2020 is $243bn). This was mainly due to Bitcoin which by 29/04/2020 reached a price of $9,388.30 up from $7,746.90 on 28/04/2020, a 17% increase. By 01/05/2020 Bitcoin was at $8,821.60. The other 2 main cryptocurrencies traded, Ethereum and XRP, also showed signs of gains during this major market event. Ethereum increased to…READ MORE ON CRYPTOCURRENCY MARKET 

top 5 investment research tips

Expanding your investor base is hard work. We know that stress and risk is involved. Here we share 5 uses of investment research by our clients to expand investor reach and add major institutions.

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Christopher Nicholson, Managing Director, ACF Equity Research

Christopher Nicholson

Managing Director/Head of Research

I am a financial analyst, entrepreneur, professionally qualified equestrian and amateur eventer. Amongst others, I trained as a financial analyst at Global US based fund manager Legg Mason Investors and have been head of Technology and Media Equity Research at Bryan Garnier, a pan-European investment bank and brokerage.

I founded ORACA Independent Equity Research a ground breaking highly independent thinking large-cap secondary comm business and ACF Equity Research, a very high-quality independent issuer-pays small and mid-cap research business. I opened our first corporate finance business (Destrier Partners) and am approaching the launch of our first non-financial services business. In my view, I am only able to do these things because of the quality of the team I work with at ACF. For 11 years I broadcasted as an expert guest and wrote regularly in the leading pan-European and international media including Bloomberg Television, BBC Radio 4 and the Financial Times.

I studied Biochemistry at Kings followed by Economics at LSE and can conduct business in English and French, I speak German and have basic knowledge of Spanish and Italian. My free time, which I make sure I carve out, is in part each day spent on my passion – riding, competing with and caring for my horse(s).

 Mike Wort,Non-Executive Chairman, ACF Equity Research

Mike Wort

Non-Executive Chairman

I have managed over 20 IPOs in the US, UK and Europe from small to large cap, I am proud to be ACF Equity Research’s Non-Executive Chairman.

I am also Executive Chairman of Texadon Oil Plc focussed on oil & gas production in the Texas Gulf Basin and is a Non-Executive Director of UK AiM listed Diaceutics, a diagnostics commercialisation business. I am a life sciences communications expert and have a background in large and mega cap pharmaceuticals.

During my more  thann  20 IPOs and secondary raisings I have brought in well in excess of £600m.

In addition, I have co-founded a number of life science start-up companies in Europe and the USA.

I am a life science communications expert and former life sciences CEO (large to start-up). He graduated in microbiology and lectured to science undergraduates in both the UK and Nigeria. He joined the pharmaceutical industry, working in a number of senior sales, marketing and clinical roles for Glaxo, SmithKline and Wellcome in the UK and overseas.

Appointed IR Manager for Wellcome, I helped organise its global roadshow for a £2.4bn secondary offering.

I have consulted on and conducted M&A and DD in the life science sector and developed disaster recovery programmes for SME companies.

I worked with Deutsche Bank to privatise the Bulgarian pharmaceutical industry. As the CEO of Balkanpharma, I led the consolidation of the three key assets into one cohesive unit. Balkanpharma has, through a series of M&A activities, become a significant part of NYSE listed Allergan.

Formerly MD at De Facto Communications, Bell Pottinger’s healthcare offering, I recently retired from Walbrook, the UK’s most successful SME PR/IR agency.


Amalia Barnoschi, Head of Operations, ACF Equity Research

Amalia Barnoschi

Head of Operations

Joining ACF at its founding I started in financial services in 2007 on the sell-side with ORACA, a large-cap independent equity research business that changed the industry. Before financial services I was a highly successful and rapidly promoted young manager in manufacturing and have worked closely at board level for over 15 years with SMEs in the City and in other financial markets.

I co-run ACF with our MD, as Head of Operations, responsible for driving profitability and developing and designing processes and managing projects for ACF and for client partners to allow our portfolio of businesses to grow. I am bilingual English/Romanian, read Italian and am working towards my accountancy ACCA qualification with AAT.

I love to relax by making time for my favourite out-of-hours activity – photography – taking my first formal nature course in May 2018. I have a keen understanding and interest in horses, though not a rider, this is combined with a life-long love of polo.

Anne Castagnede, Head of Sales & Strategy, ACF Equity Research

Anne Castagnede

Head of Sales & Strategy

I am a sales professional with a top-tier luxury goods background. In the past 5 years I managed flagship boutiques as well as working for some of the great Haute Couture houses including Chanel and Jimmy Choo, where I established a reputation as a top performer by developing, maintaining and offering information and guidance to new and existing clients.

I have researched, recommended and implemented service opportunities as well as improvements. In the early days of my career I trained with Air France and later with Chanel. On my journey I acquired management skills from back office through to front office and have a high degree of practical IT literacy.

I know from personal experience that passion leads the way to perfection and my will to learn matched with my sales ability will result in clients being in very capable hands. My bilingual languages are French and English and I speak Spanish. Off-duty my passions are languages and art.

Renas Sidahmed, Sales & Strategy / Staff Analyst, ACF Equity Research

Renas Sidahmed

Head of ESG / Staff Analyst

I am a macro-economic and financial analyst, linguist, mathematician, professional dancer and chef. I worked for four years with the IMF, two and half years with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and eight months with the World Bank in Washington DC.

I also wrote award winning research notes and met with senior politicians with varied global and local interests in both wealthy and less developed economies. My sector expertise includes natural resources (particularly oil & gas) healthcare, manufacturing, infrastructure and investment portfolio management.

At ACF, as part of my staff analyst role, I am also Head of ESG / Sustainability and its products and services.

Before joining ACF Equity Research, I worked with Japan’s second largest brokerage, Mitsubishi Bank, in the London office. I speak six languages including English (native), Italian, French and Arabic and obtained an MBA in Rome and a Mathematics degree from a sister Ivy League – Smith College. I joined ACF because of its entrepreneurial, female friendly City culture, overarching global values and excellent growth prospects.

Anthony Kimber

Anthony Kimber

Senior Analyst ESG / Sustainability

I have considerable experience in the wealth management and private banking industries. I am co-author of the Platforum UK Wealth Management Market Overview report, and previously was Research Director at PAM Insight, a specialist publisher for the wealth management industry. I engage in research and analysis both qualitative and quantitative and am an experienced project and business development manager. I have been commissioned by UHNWI's, companies and organisations for various bespoke projects.

I also contribute to major news and media organisations, compiling and analysing data and research for the Daily Telegraph and Evening Standard on national government and environmental issues. Prior, I contributed to the Guardian, the Spectator, BBC news and investigative programming, the Sunday Times, and the Sunday Times Rich List.

My interest in ESG and sustainability is focused on raising awareness and achieving practical and workable solutions to the climate crisis we are facing. I enjoy spending my free time with family and friends, watching cricket, theatre and film.

Anda Maria Onu, Sales & Strategy, ACF Equity Research

Anda Maria Onu

Sales & Strategy

I have strong analytical, planning and execution skills, I love working as part of a team both inside ACF and externally with our clients and prospective clients.

I am used to working with and within senior leadership teams and understand the needs of small and medium sized companies through my current and previous professional experience, I graduated in life sciences with a specialisation in Ecology and Environmental Protection in Romania in 2007 and for my first job I worked in a laboratory carrying out chemical analysis of industrial waste-water.

I am passionate about the environment and work as a volunteer for the Sussex Wildlife Trust doing conservation work at the Old Lodge nature reserve. In my spare time I am a school governor and have been a juror at the Royal Court of Justice. My hobbies are dance, horses, swimming, opera and theatre.

Zak Mir, Technical Analyst, ACF Equity Research

Zak Mir

Technical Analyst

Zak Mir has 30 years financial markets experience and understands credible influencing across digital channels in order to drive stock liquidity. He is an accomplished author.

I am part of ACF’s advisory and execution team helping growth companies (nano, micro, small and mid-cap) maximise their profiles to achieve the optimal investment message.

Amongst others I have worked for Man Group companies, Berkeley Futures and Sucden. I have been a technical analyst, derivatives broker and Chief Market Strategist for a number of brokers in the retail space developing and optimising client trading strategies. I ran the well-attended annual Master Investor conferences and am a keynote speaker at the UK investor show. I also host the CityAM Podcast.

Analytical communications is part of my forte – I have variously been a markets columnist, editor and commentator for influential retail financial information outlets, amongst others – Investors Chronical, Yahoo! Finance, Shares Magazine, international leading long-form periodical The Spectator, CNBC and Bloomberg TV.

Away from the markets, I am a song writer and musician and have a long and patient interest in politics – areas that continue to be potential additional professional careers.
I was attracted to ACF because of the effectiveness of its high quality research and its forwarding thinking culture.

Richard Calvert, Director, Distribution & Service, ACF Equity Research

Richard Calvert

Director, Distribution & Service

I’m a Modern Marketing Strategist with a strong CXM, digital transformation and innovation background working with global blue chip clients, modern creative and media agencies and start-ups.

I put people, data, technology and brand at the heart of everything I do – always delivering highly creative and effective integrated solutions with engaged, excited teams. I believe in taking everyone from the Account Exec to the C-suite client with me on the journey.

I work with Global clients as easily as entrepreneurial start-ups across a broad range of categories from Automotive to FMCG, Financial Services and Technology. My recent focus has been on Digital integration; Relationship Marketing; Content Planning and Brand evolution.

Specialties: Strategic Planning, CXM, Digital and Business Transformation, Programmatic Marketing, Proposition Development, Content Planning, User Experience Development and Design, Mobile, Consumer Insight Development, Brand Planning and Development, Information Architecture and Design, Business Development, Digital Channel Strategy Development, Brand Development, CRM Strategy and Delivery, Business Development

Vicky Ryce, Director, Research Distribution, ACF Equity Research

Vicky Ryce

Director, Research Distribution

I am a digital communications and distribution specialist and strategist used to board level decision making. I started my career as part of the ground-breaking young cadre that for a short exciting time formed the original Text 100, and whose members have gone on to lead and influence thought in digital communications.

During my career I have worked with world leading agency Publicis and counselled the C-suite of some of the world’s biggest public companies, including Philips, Xerox and Microsoft, on how to improve their communications reach and then helping them execute. I also work with smaller and mid-sized private and public companies on the FTSE 250 and below. I am as comfortable dealing with retail reach, as with corporate and institutional capital markets distribution strategies.

I am an equestrian, proven entrepreneur and charitable volunteer and when I can cut out the time, I help young adults via the Princes Trust. I am an English and History graduate with an MA in Media and Culture. ACF Equity Research has a determined problem solving, enlightened forward-thinking capital markets culture and a global values set.

Adrian Chiappe, Editor, ACF Equity Research

Adrian Chiappe


Adrian has over 20 years investment research writing, editing and supervisory analysis experience for leading investment banks including Barclays Capital, UBS, BNP Paribas, Jefferies, S&P, Danske Bank, ABN Amro, Lombard Odier and Bear Stearns.

He has a deep understanding of his subject. Adrian has executed editing and supervisory analysis for investment banks, brokerages and fund managers. He has up-to-date knowledge of the operational and regulatory framework for international institutional equities markets. Adrian is a materials scientist and has languages