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Buzz on the Bullboards: Buying Binge or Sell-Off Frenzy?

Stockhouse Editorial
2 Comments| February 17, 2022

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Adrift in a sea of global economic uncertainty and confusion, last week was full of tough questions for investors on the Stockhouse Bullboards. Some of the most popular companies on the website suffered setbacks, while other small caps gained attention as investors looked for potential plays.

Stockhouse users seem bullish about big swings and small cap opportunities alike, so tapping into the Bullboards can show us what’s captivating value seeking investors. This week, we highlight three plays that drew attention.

A leader in the design, development, manufacture and commercialization of advanced plasma processes and sustainable solutions, PyroGenesis Canada Inc. (TSX-V.PYR, Forum) has received approval from the Toronto Stock Exchange to implement a Normal Course Issuer Bid, or NCIB.

As of February 7th, 2022, there were 170,125,795 common shares of PyroGenesis issued and outstanding. PyroGenesis may purchase up to 78,089 common shares a day.

All purchases made by the company will be through Pollitt & Co. Inc. The purchases will be made through the facilities of the TSX or alternative trading systems. The shares purchased under the NCIB will be cancelled. The company believes that the proposed purchasing of its common shares will enhance value and liquidity for its shareholders.

Under the previous NCIB, which ended on January 13, 2022, 5,000,000 common shares were approved for purchase, of which 840,094 common shares were purchased. The weighted average price paid per common share purchased was $4.96.

With exposure to Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Datametrex AI Ltd. (TSXV:DM, Forum) has graduated from Tier 2 to Tier 1 on the TSX Venture Exchange.

The company also reports that it has completed initial work on the development of an app that utilizes its proprietary AI engine to address the growing EV charging market.

Tier 1 is the TSXV’s premier tier and is reserved for the TSXV’s most advanced issuers with the most significant financial resources. Becoming a Tier 1 issuer will provide Datametrex with further exposure and awareness for investors.

The EV charging app, developed using the company’s proprietary AI, will advise users of the best course of action to charge their vehicle based on time, cost, location, and destination. Once launched, both privately owned and commercial charging stations will be able to register as a provider on the app. Additional details will be provided as the initiative progresses.

Once known for being the world's largest smartphone manufacturer, BlackBerry Limited (TSX: BB, Forum) is now exclusively a software provider who released its 2022 BlackBerry Annual Threat Report this week, highlighting a cybercriminal underground which has been optimized to better target local small businesses. The report also uncovers cyber breadcrumbs from some of last year's most notorious ransomware attacks, suggesting some of the biggest culprits may have simply been outsourced labour.

One of the key findings of the report was that small businesses are an increasing focus of attack: They will continue to be an epicenter for cybercriminal focus as SMBs facing upward of 11 cyberthreats per device per day, which only stands to accelerate as cybercriminals increasingly adopt collaborative mindsets.

Eric Milam, Vice President of Research and Intelligence, BlackBerry said that criminals are working out how to target us better. The infrastructure of the cyber underground has evolved so they can deliver more timely and personalized deceptions to the public.

“This infrastructure has also incubated a criminal shared economy, with threat groups sharing and outsourcing malware allowing for attacks to happen at scale. In fact, some of the biggest cyber incidents of 2021 look to have been the result of this outsourcing.”

A leading producer of high-quality cannabis products, HEXO Corp. (TSX: HEXO, Forum) provided an update on its previously announced strategic plan, "The Path Forward", designed to “solidify HEXO’s position as the number one cannabis company in Canada” by recreational market share, with the goal of becoming the first amongst its peers to be cash flow positive from operations.

HEXO is committed to providing its shareholders with updates as the Company executes the strategic plan. Today’s announcement provides updates to one of the five strategic pillars: “Streamline and Simplify the Organizational Structure”.

Scott Cooper, HEXO’s President said this was not an easy announcement to make.

“We are working with all impacted employees to the best of our ability to ensure that they are treated fairly and provided the support necessary to assist with this transition.”

On January 19th, 2022, the company declared that it would reduce SG&A expenses by 30% by Fiscal Year End 2023.

Progressive medical diagnostic and device technology company Therma Bright Inc. (TSX-V: THRM, Forum)AcuVid COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Saliva Test has exceeded US FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) requirements.

The company’s management and product development teams are currently compiling the US Clinical Performance Study results with all supplemental studies into one complete US Food & Drug Administration’s (FDA) EUA application for submission.

Therma Bright is the first company in the COVID-19 diagnostic testing space to successfully complete a 15-minute rapid antigen saliva-based US study.

The AcuVid saliva test also achieved successful results on several mouth-based bacteria and viruses in additional cross-reactivity study requests from the FDA, which other EUA test manufacturers did not have to conduct.

The AcuVid US clinical study was conducted from December 2021 through January 2022. The Brazilian clinical study was completed in July 2021. The Brazilian team detected both the original novel coronavirus Wuhan strain (SARS CoV-2) and the Brazilian P.1 and P.2 and the UK B.1.1.7 variants.

The company has begun work on its FDA EUA efforts for AcuVid At Home Use, and continues to work to improve the performance of its rapid antigen saliva test for this self-test submission.

“We are pleased with the success of our AcuVid US Clinical Performance Study, along with our Brazilian clinical study, various cross-reactivity studies and numerous COVID-19 variant studies,” shared Rob Fia, CEO of Therma Bright.

“Since July 2021, our team has worked diligently with FDA officials, doctors and scientists in our pursuit to meet all the EUA requirements. It’s our belief we have achieved all requests and requirements and have one of the most tested pre-EUA COVID-19 rapid antigen tests for submission. Once our final FDA EUA application for Point-of Care is complete, we will submit and patiently await authorization.”

What the "Buzz"

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Reliq Health Technologies Inc. (TSX-V:RHT, Forum) has signed agreements with current clients to add more than 10,000 new patients to its virtual platform this year.

The agreement will be governed by new Medicare Remote Therapeutic Monitoring (RTM) billing codes for patients with musculoskeletal or respiratory conditions.

A global healthcare technology company that specializes in developing virtual care solutions, Reliq Health’s target patient population has increased by over 20 million eligible patients.

The company expects to begin onboarding RTM patients with its existing clients later this month.cIt expects the addition of 10,000 new patients to be the minimum this year with an average revenue of $40 per patient each month.

Dr. Lisa Crossley, CEO of Reliq Health, stated that five new billing codes for RTM were introduced - Remote Therapeutic Monitoring allows clinicians to provide ongoing in-home treatment and monitoring for patients with musculoskeletal and respiratory conditions.

RTM lets patients use medical devices that collect non-physiological data such as therapy or medication adherence and response. It also allows for patient self-reporting for issues such as pain level, mobility, or nighttime waking due to breathing difficulties.

The new codes increase the eligible patient population for Reliq Health’s primary care clients by 50% and allow orthopaedic and respiratory specialists to use the company’s iUGO Care platform to improve patient care and generate new revenue streams for their specialty practices.

iUGO Care provides access to remote patient monitoring data which allows for timely interventions by a care team to prevent costly hospital readmissions and ER visits.

Canada Nickel Company Inc. (TSX-V: CNC, Forum) announced further metallurgical results at its 100% owned Crawford Nickel Sulphide Project this week which delivered what the company believes is the highest nickel sulphide concentrate grade from a locked cycle test.

The company added that these test results also confirm the newest flowsheet improvements, incorporated as part of metallurgical variability testing for the feasibility study, can deliver improved recoveries and improved concentrate quality.

Mark Selby, Canada Nickel’s Chair and CEO expressed his pleasure with the first two tests achieving nickel recoveries more than 60%.

“This latest test is further confirmation of both significant recovery and excellent nickel sulphide concentrate grades particularly from a low-grade sample. Results from this latest phase of testing are indicating that we can achieve grades of 40-50% for the high-grade nickel concentrate, well above the current 35% target for this product. While we will test a broad range of samples during the upcoming phase of feasibility study work and expect a range of recovery results from 30% to 60+%, this second locked cycle test further demonstrates the potential to deliver improvements in nickel recovery substantially higher than the 4-5 percentage point improvement in nickel recovery the Company is targeting for the feasibility study. Each percentage point of improvement in nickel recovery would yield a US$92 million improvement in the value of the NPV8% of the project, based on the Preliminary Economic Analysis (PEA) metrics.”

(Location of Sample used in Locked Cycle Test. Image via Canada Nickel Company Inc. Click to enlarge.)

The magnetite concentrate from the current test had an iron grade of 51%, which is a substantial improvement over the modelled grade of the 47.5% iron utilized in the PEA. The chromium grade of 1.2% is lower than the 3.3% chromium grade that was modelled in the PEA and the chromium recovery of 17% was lower than target recovery in the PEA of 27%. Of the total nickel recovery of 63%, 7 percentage points of the total recovery reported to the magnetite concentrate.

Metallurgical test work through the remainder of 2022 will focus on finalizing and evaluating a flowsheet for the Feasibility Study which is expected to be completed by Q4 2022.

Headquartered in the Congo, Ivanhoe Mines Ltd. (TSX: IVN, Forum) is a Canadian mining company focused on advancing its three principal projects in Southern Africa: the development of major new, mechanized, underground mines at the Kamoa-Kakula copper discoveries in the Democratic Republic of Congo and at the Platreef palladium-rhodium-platinum-nickel-copper-gold discovery in South Africa; and the extensive redevelopment and upgrading of the historic Kipushi zinc-copper-germanium-silver mine, also in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

IVN announced this week that Kipushi Holding, an Ivanhoe Mines wholly-owned subsidiary, and Gécamines have signed a new agreement to return the ultra-high-grade Kipushi Mine back to commercial production. Kipushi will be the world's highest-grade major zinc mine, with average grade of 36.4% zinc over the first five years of production.

Kipushi 2022 feasibility study highlights outstanding economic results from planned rebirth of the historic Kipushi Mine, with two-year development timeline. Kipushi will be the world's highest-grade major zinc mine, with average grade of 36.4% zinc over the first five years. The life-of-mine average annual zinc production of 240,000 tonnes with C1 cash costs of US$0.65/lb of payable zinc.

(Image via Ivanhoe Mines.)

Finally, Pacific Booker Minerals Inc. (TSX-V: BKM, Forum) had to admit to investors that that an Environmental Assessment Certificate will not be issued for the Morrison Copper/Gold Project, following a decision by George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, and Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation.

The Company has been advised that the Environmental Assessment Act allows PBM to submit another proposal based on a new project design in the future.

We conclude with a look at our Investor Pulse Poll this week and we want to know your thoughts on “the Metaverse”. It has millions of users already and a bit of investment buzz, but the companies that hold on to this space have seen a muted performance. What do you think? Is this digital real estate of the future, or just another fad? Let us know your thoughts by clicking the image below to cast your vote.

(Click image to vote.)

Looking at last week’s survey, it seems that most of you are cautious, maybe cautiously optimistic about where the markets are headed in the near future.

Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below.

February has already given us a wild market ride and some small-cap stocks that the Stockhouse Bullboards have gotten excited about. Next week will probably bring more of the same, and the weekly Buzz on the Bullboards review will be here to bring you some hot stocks. For previous editions of Buzz on the Bullboards: click here.

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FULL DISCLOSURE: PyroGenesis Canada Inc. is a client of Stockhouse Publishing.

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