Masayoshi Son, founder and chief exec of Japanese multinational conglomerate SoftBank, has called a reported ~$US18.5bn ($28.3bn) investment in WeWork “foolish”.

Last year, ongoing criticism about WeWork’s huge financial losses and strange corporate structure saw the firm abandon its listing aspirations. Enigmatic cofounder Adam Neumann also stepped down as chief exec.

Masayoshi Son has now given the office leasing start-up — which was privately valued at +$US47bn prior to its famously bungled IPO — a lowly $US2.9bn valuation in Softbank’s latest earnings presentation.

Son is famous for his wild pressos. This time, a series of slides shows three unicorns running toward the so-called ‘Valley of Coronavirus’.

Two unicorns get stuck in the valley, but one flies across the hole to the other side, symbolising how SoftBank sees some companies succeeding in the wake of the crisis. Somehow.

In Markets…

On Monday, European investors were buoyed by an easing of lockdown restrictions and proposals for a European Recovery Fund worth €500bn; that’s 4.2 per cent of Eurozone GDP.

US share markets also soared when drug maker Moderna reported “positive” phase one results for a potential COVID-19 vaccine. CNBC also reported that US Federal Reserve Chair Powell was committed to “using all tools to fight the unprecedented economic downturn”.

SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm on Tuesday May 19:

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CODE COMPANY PRICE % CHANGE MARKET CAP
EMP Emperor Energy 0.04 122.22% $1.5M
E25 Element 25 0.35 75.00% $18.4M
CPT Cipherpoint 0.02 53.85% $786K
VAL Valor Resources 0.002 50.00% $1.9M
MNW Mint Payments 0.01 42.86% $6.4M
NAE New Age Exploration 0.004 33.33% $2.7M
BRK Brookside Energy 0.006 33.33% $4.0M
OVT Ovato 0.024 33.33% $13.2M
LIN Lindian Resources 0.015 31.82% $6.4M
MPR Mpower 0.015 25.00% $1.9M
AX8 Accelerate Resources 0.035 25.00% $2.2M
XTC Xantippe Resources 0.003 25.00% $6.7M
SBR Sabre Resources 0.0025 25.00% $1.7M
ZIM Zimplats Holdings 10.60 22.54% $931.1M
ASN Anson Resources 0.028 21.74% $15.0M
CE1 Calima Energy 0.006 20.00% $10.8M
IVZ Invictus Energy 0.025 19.05% $9.4M
MXR Maximus Resources 0.039 18.18% $1.6M
HCH Hot Chili 0.02 17.65% $29.6M

 

Emperor Energy (ASX:EMP) is working with large cap infrastructure provider APA Group (ASX:APA) to help get its Judith gas field in Victoria into production. The stock was up +120 per cent by lunchtime.

Advanced manganese explorer Element 25 (ASX:E25) has released its maiden ore reserve for its Butcherbird project in WA.

It was enough to give the stock a 75 per cent bump in morning trade.

Lindian Resources (ASX:LIN) jumped +30 per cent on solid grades from extensions to the Gaoual bauxite project in Guinea.

“The extensions will no doubt add considerable scale to the very high-grade conglomerate bauxite, further strengthening the significance of the Bouba Plateau and the entire project area, leaving no doubt this is a world class discovery,” the company says.

 

SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm on Tuesday May 19:

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CODE COMPANY PRICE % CHANGE MARKET CAP
GTE GTE 0.001 -50.00% $1.3M
BAS Bass Oil 0.001 -33.33% $5.0M
CCE Carnegie Clean Energy 0.001 -33.33% $11.1M
CLZ Classic Minerals 0.001 -33.33% $8.2M
OAR Oakdale Resources 0.002 -20.00% $1.4M
DDD 3D Resources 0.002 -20.00% $6.3M
CTO Citigold Corporation 0.004 -20.00% $9.7M
TMK Tamaska Oil and Gas 0.005 -16.67% $4.5M
DRE Dreadnought Resources 0.005 -16.67% $8.8M
CUX Crossland Strategic Metals 0.005 -16.67% $5.1M
PUR Pursuit Minerals 0.005 -16.67% $1.8M
RDF Redflex Holdings 0.36 -15.29% $54.4M
IVR Investigator Resources 0.018 -14.29% $15.2M
KTE K2 Energy 0.013 -13.33% $3.9M
VOR Vortiv 0.105 -12.50% $14.6M
CXZ Connexion Media 0.014 -12.50% $12.1M
KGM Kalnorth Gold Mines 0.007 -12.50% $6.3M
GBZ GBM Resources 0.065 -12.16% $14.6M
ECG eCargo Holdings 0.022 -12.00% $13.5M

 

Junior gold explorer Dreadnought Resources (ASX:DRE) fell after announcing a capital raising.