After 35 years of stockbroking for some of the biggest houses and investors in Australia and the UK, the Secret Broker is regaling Stockhead readers with his colourful war stories — from the trading floor to the dealer’s desk.

Here is a list of stocks which some of you may think is from the mother-in-law’s portfolio once I explain to you what they are:

1. Buddy Technologies (ASX:BUD)
2. BuildingIQ (ASX:BIQ)
3. East Energy Resources (ASX:EER)
4. Farmaforce (ASX:FFC)
5. Firefinch (ASX:FFX)
6. GoldOz (ASX:G79)
7. HHY Fund (ASX:HHY)
8. IQ3Corp (ASX:IQ3)
9. KalNorth Gold Mines (ASX:KGM)
10. MEC Resources (ASX:MMR)
11. Murray River Organics Group (ASX:MRG)
12. New Standard Energy (ASX:NSE)
13. Osprey Medical (ASX:OSP)
14. Ovato (ASX:OVT)
15. Oventus Medical (ASX:OVN)
16. Roto-Gro International (ASX:RGI)
17. Salt Lake Potash (ASX:SO4)
18. Soon Mining (ASX:SMG)
19. Southern Cross Payments (ASX:SP1)
20. Wellness and Beauty Solutions (ASX:WNB)
21. Wiluna Mining Corporation (ASX:WMC)

The above list is all of the companies that have not paid their listing fees to the ASX as of August 22. They have until COB today (Friday August 26) to cough them up, otherwise they will be removed from the ‘Official List’.

Once removed, those companies’ shares cannot be quoted on the ASX and seeing as it is a yearly requirement, not being able to pay them is really when a company has reached the lower depths. Listing fees range from around $35k for a $50m market cap company, to $100k for $2 billion and above.

So, by Monday, you will know which ones have whipped the hat around and which ones have not.

Even the ASX is not interested in them, otherwise they would allow them to pay in scrip and live to trade another day.

I had to giggle at number 18, as Soon Mining obviously isn’t going to be mining soon and Southern Cross Payments (No. 19) looks like all payments really have headed south.

The very last one has or had the code WMC, which some of you ASX die-hards (like me) may know, was once the ticker for Western Mining Corporation.

Back in the day, along with BHPs and RIOs, Western Mining Corporation would make up a staple portfolio requirement for our UK clients’ portfolios, so they had some exposure to International commodities.

Their weighting would be around 5% to 10%, depending on our clients’ requirements, with 5% for the income ones and 10% for the higher growth ones. The company was founded in 1933 by a chap who went by the name of Will Robinson and now it would appear that this old ASX code definitely has been ‘lost in space’ for the second time around.

The old WMC ended up being taken over by BHP (June 2005) although the code WMC had actually become defunct in 2002, after they spun out their investment in Alcoa World Alumina & Chemicals and their code then became WMR.

At one point, mining identity Joe Gutnick was a director of the reincarnated coded company (when he was allowed to be) between 2013 till 2014.

Mind you, his private company had invested $13m at this time, though he was later declared personally bankrupt in 2016, with debts of over $275m.

When the ASX issued them a ‘non speeding ticket’ in the post, their market cap was $74m at their last traded price of 20.5c.

You also really have to feel for their other shareholders though.

It was only on the 17 June 2022 that WMC had completed a $57m fundraising at 40c a share (with a free 60c Dec 2024 option) after reaching their minimum requirement of $50m.

The broker to the issue was the aptly named Lazarus Capital Partners, who unfortunately only managed to raise the company from death for just over a month, as the directors put the company into Voluntary Administration on July 21.

And now they have been pinged for non-payment of their listing fees.

What a sorry state for such an important ASX code to end this way. Maybe next time it could come back as a dot com company.

Going back to the list, the company mentioned with the highest valuation was SP1 (No. 19) at $1.18bn and the company with the lowest valuation was G79 (No. 6) at $0.17m.

After SP1, the next two highest valuations came in at $253m for SO4 (No. 17) and $236m for FFX (No. 5). Totting up the total value of all of those companies came in at $1.9bn.

The very first one on the list is the old ASX forum favourite Buddy though most shareholders certainly won’t be calling it a friend anymore.

On 11 October 2011, they reached $1.43 a share. Their last traded price was 0.006c a share, which still valued them at $21.08m as they had 3.51bn shares on issue. At their peak, that would be like a $5bn valuation.

Ironically, the highest valuation company is the old iSignthis and they are suing the ASX over an argument and want $464m in compensation.

At their last valuation, their annual listing fee would be $86,000. The sneaky ASX are geared to a company’s valuation and as they tier the fees are like this:

Mkt Val Annual Fee
$50m $35,877
$100m $46,695
$200m $51,067
$500m $64,184
$1,000m $86,046
$2,000m $100,620

So there you go. ASIC go banging on about how risky cry…… crypto trading can be but doesn’t mention the potential loss involved in delisting 21 companies from the ASX trading platform.

Their protection from any angry shareholder is hidden in Latin. ‘Caveat Emptor’.

A phrase that Mrs Broker knows all too well and is something that this bloke should have been aware of when he visited Las Vegas in the name of God.


The Secret Broker can be found on Twitter here @SecretBrokerAU or on email at [email protected].

Feel free to contact him with your best stock tips and ideas.