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GeoOp votes to leave NZAX as NZ minnows mull future

GeoOp votes to leave NZAX as NZ minnows mull future without small-cap indexes

By Jonathan Underhill

July 14 (BusinessDesk) - Shareholders of GeoOp, the unprofitable management app developer, have approved plans to relocate to the ASX from the NZAX and raise funds via an initial public offering that could dilute their holdings by as much as 40 percent.

GeoOp's shares were suspended from trading on June 29 pending today's special meeting in Auckland and NZX Regulation has now said the suspension will continue until either GeoOp formally delists or cancels its plan to move to the ASX. Shareholders approved three resolutions - for the company to seek an ASX listing; for the board to issue up to 35.29 million shares at a price range of 17-19.5 Australian cents; and a new constitution be adopted. More than 99 percent of shares voted were in favour.

GeoOp must achieve a post-IPO capitalisation of A$15 million under the ASX listing requirements in order for the listing to proceed. GeoOp went public in 2013, selling shares at $1 apiece in a private offer before its compliance listing on the NZAX Alternative Index. The stock last traded on the NZAX at 22 cents, giving it a market capitalisation of $16.3 million. The move to an ASX listing would follow its business, with Australia now accounting for 60 percent of sales and its management team already across the Tasman.

Other companies on NZX's small-cap indexes - the NZAX and the NXT market - are also contemplating their future as listed entities after the stock market operator said last month that lack of support and liquidity meant it is likely to consolidate its three equity markets onto a single board. It is mulling whether smaller companies could be subject to different requirements as part of a simplified structure that could combine the main NZSX board, the NZAX which was already earmarked to be phased out, and its replacement market for small caps, NXT.

A spokeswoman for Burger Fuel Worldwide, the NZAX-listed burger chain franchisor, said: "at the moment, everything's under review."

Livestock Improvement, whose NZAX-listed shares can only be traded by cooperative members, said that on the basis of the NZX's proposal, it intended to remain a listed cooperative but the board was reviewing options as part of the work currently underway on its capital structure.

Geneva Finance managing director David O’Connell said as his company became more profitable "we see Geneva inevitably moving onto the main board in the reasonably near future" but he had no particular comment to make on the NZAX, NXT or Unlisted platforms as a mechanism for listing equities.

TruScreen chief executive Martin Dillon said he had been aware for some time there was a likelihood of a reconfiguration of the NZX market structure "and the board will be working with the NZX on the best options moving forward for the company and its shareholders."

GeoOp aims to register its prospectus by July 24 and list on the ASX by Sept. 8. As well as the shares, it may issue up to 13.2 million fully paid options, with an exercise price of not less than 30 Australian cents.

GeoOp's products include GeoServices, for mobile workforce and job management, and GeoSales, a mobile sales workforce management app, and it is soon to launch its GeoCare mobile human services management tool. The company has 27,000 clients in 30 countries, including the Auckland Council, Downer and TrustPower.

(BusinessDesk)

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