Following a 30 per cent gain in 2019, the S&P/ASX Emerging Companies index – which measures overall performance of the ASX microcap sector — moved another 3 per cent higher in January. Of the sub-$400m market cap companies on our list, 692 went up, 700 went down, and 196 stayed the same over the month.

Mineral explorers dominated the winner’s column (not surprising, as they also make up the lion’s share of microcaps on the ASX):

Here’s the top 50  small caps for the month of January>>>

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NCL NETCCENTRIC 300 0.005 0.020 5.25M
AUT AUTECO MINERALS 167 0.009 0.024 24.06M
ADD ADAVALE RESOURCES 144 0.016 0.039 6.21M
FRX FLEXIROAM 137 0.016 0.038 11.60M
KZR KALAMAZOO RESOURCES 133 0.275 0.640 78.31M
CAN CANN GROUP 105 0.630 1.290 183.72M
EER EAST ENERGY RESOURCES 100 0.003 0.006 19.21M
CAD CAENEUS MINERALS 100 0.001 0.002 5.30M
PSZ PS&C 98 0.015 0.030 10.53M
GBZ GBM RESOURCES 94 0.036 0.070 13.50M
GBP GLOBAL PETROLEUM 90 0.020 0.038 7.70M
MHI MERCHANT HOUSE INTL 89 0.061 0.115 10.84M
EHX EHR RESOURCES 87 0.064 0.120 15.20M
CXX CRADLE RESOURCES 83 0.030 0.055 10.43M
SGO STREAM GROUP 82 0.011 0.020 4.39M
GTG GENETIC TECHNOLOGIES 82 0.005 0.010 40.63M
LKE LAKE RESOURCES 81 0.026 0.047 24.89M
TMK TAMASKA OIL & GAS 80 0.005 0.009 8.01M
TSL TITANIUM SANDS 78 0.018 0.032 24.92M
MAG MAGMATIC RESOURCES 77 0.220 0.390 60.64M
8IH 8I HOLDINGS 75 0.080 0.140 50.73M
MEU MARMOTA 72 0.025 0.043 36.31M
WZR WISR 68 0.157 0.265 247.73M
SKN SKIN ELEMENTS 67 0.009 0.015 2.94M
DDD 3D RESOURCES 67 0.002 0.002 2.89M
RXH REWARDLE HOLDINGS 67 0.003 0.005 2.63M
OKU OKLO RESOURCES 64 0.140 0.230 94.94M
CSE COPPER STRIKE 62 0.037 0.060 6.41M
AXE ARCHER MATERIALS 61 0.155 0.250 53.10M
CZN CORAZON MINING 60 0.002 0.004 8.35M
STN SATURN METALS 57 0.300 0.470 34.40M
TGO TRIMANTIUM GROWTHOPS 56 0.090 0.140 19.45M
WJA WAMEJA 55 0.084 0.130 157.41M
SYA SAYONA MINING 55 0.011 0.017 36.41M
TNT TESSERENT 55 0.044 0.068 29.16M
GLN GALAN LITHIUM 54 0.130 0.200 32.33M
BIT BIOTRON 54 0.052 0.080 56.15M
8VI 8VIC HOLDINGS 53 0.170 0.260 10.54M
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES 50 0.010 0.015 6.27M
HHM HAMPTON HILL MINING 50 0.020 0.030 8.84M
EPM ECLIPSE METALS 50 0.004 0.006 7.41M
KTE K2 ENERGY 50 0.004 0.006 1.80M
GLV GLOBAL OIL & GAS 50 0.001 0.002 4.69M
AOA AUSMON RESOURCES 50 0.002 0.003 1.90M
ROG RED SKY ENERGY 50 0.002 0.003 4.88M
LSA LACHLAN STAR 50 0.004 0.006 4.52M
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Netccentric (ASX:NCL) +300%

Market Cap: ~$5m

Shares in Singapore-based ‘bottom of the sock drawer’ minnow Netccentric (ASX:NCL) rose strongly after Ernst & Young’s Technology Entrepreneur of the Year Malaysia 2012 Ganesh Kumar Bangah acquired an 84 per cent interest in the company.

Ganesh founded his first internet business at 20 years old which then, through a series of acquisitions, became South East Asia’s first NASDAQ-listed internet firm in 2014.

He’s done other stuff as well. Overall, it’s a pretty impressive resume which the Netccentric board says, “will add value to the company”.


Auteco Minerals (ASX:AUT) +167%

Market Cap: ~$24m

Vanadium-titanium explorer Auteco caught a rocket after buying a historic gold project, something every small cap explorer seems to be doing at the moment.

The project in question is Pickle Crow, one of Canada’s highest-grade historical gold mines which produced 1.5 million ounces of gold at a grade of 16g/t until 1966.

It remains underexplored, Auteco says, with little modern exploration since it closed.


Adavale Resources (ASX:ADD) +144%

Market Cap: ~$6m

Former uranium play/shell company Adavale submitted an application for ground neighbouring the government owned Kabanga project in Tanzania — one of the largest undeveloped nickel sulphide projects in the world.

In a show of considerable ambition, Adavale also said that it was assessing whether to tender for the big prize – Kabanga – itself.

Major miners Glencore and Barrick previously spent hundreds of millions on exploration and predevelopment at Kabanga. The project was delayed due to low nickel prices. Then the Tanzanian government decided to change the rules and take it back, because that’s definitely the right way to attract foreign investment.


Kalamazoo Resources (ASX:KZR) +133%

Market Cap: ~$80m

Kalamazoo Resources has a couple of new cornerstone shareholders — Canadian billionaire investor Eric Sprott and $US460m ($681.5m) market cap goldie Novo Resources.

The $8m investment from Sprott and Novo came after Kalamazoo reported really high gold grades early in maiden drilling at its Castlemaine gold project, near the world class Fosterville mine in Victoria’s goldfields.

“High-grade epizonal mineralisation forms at shallow depths and is usually eroded away during the mountain-building processes associated with the formation of such deposits,” Novo’s president and chairman Dr Quinton Hennigh says.

“It is extremely rare to find these systems preserved.

“Kalamazoo’s recent results display many of the right geologic indicators of this special type of high-grade deposit, remarkable given these recent results are at such an early stage.”


Cann Group (ASX:CAN) +105%

Market Cap: ~$180m

In early January, Cann Group said its manufacturer had started making cannabis resin from the company’s plants, and it should be ready for sale by March.

IDT Australia (ASX:IDT), a $33m pharmaceuticals manufacturer based in eastern Melbourne, had been posting videos on LinkedIn of its cannabis operations, which led to a 37 per cent spike in the price of Cann shares before it went into a trading halt.

This was a big step towards commercialisation, Cann’s Peter Crock says.

“This facilitates the manufacture of finished product formulations and puts us a step closer to launching our own locally sourced and produced range of medicinal cannabis treatments to satisfy both domestic demand and to help develop valuable export pathways.”