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Market report: Big dip for theme park supplier Accesso on sale setback

Michael Bow
Roller coasters are an effective way of removing kidney stones, research has found: PA

Rollercoasters are part and parcel of Accesso Technology, the company behind the oh-so clever devices used at theme parks to help keep your place in the queue for Nemesis Inferno.

On Thursday investors rode the biggest of big dippers when the company kiboshed a proposed sale of the firm and the chief executive headed for the exits, sending its shares swooning.

Accesso licenses software and electronic wristbands to make punters dip into their pockets and spend more at places like Legoland, Alton Towers, cruise ships and ski resorts.

Accesso said in the summer buyers were flocking to its door to snap up the company. Now they say they can’t get enough money from them and it won’t be sold.

Chief executive Paul Noland’s ride is over and he will be replaced by founder Steve Brown.

The shares fell 22%, losing nearly a quid to settle at 345p.

The FTSE 100 missed a beat also, losing 18.84 points, or 0.25%, to 7553.08 on fears in China about the coronavirus. Signs that President Donald Trump may be gearing up for a trade war with dear old Blighty over UK plans to slap a digital tax on US online firms also dampened the mood.

Cybersecurity firm NCC was on the rise after boosting sales due to strong demand for consulting services in the US and UK.

The company is halfway through a three-year turnaround plan, snappily titled Securing Growth Together, to boost its cashflows and it said everything is on track.

The shares rose 2.3%, or 4.9p, to 212.9p.

Anglo American, which bought Yorkshire potash miner Sirius Minerals for £400 million recently, hit targets but its shares fell after weak diamond production figures at De Beers.

Output of palladium and platinum, two of the most in-demand mentals on earth now due to the green investment boom, rose 10%.

“The price of palladium, a key input for catalytic converters, has soared to the extent that the exhaust systems of old Priuses might now be worth more than the car itself,” said Fidelity’s Tom Stevenson.

Russian gold miner Petropavlovsk was the top riser on the market after a surge in production, sending its shares to a five-year high.

The shares hit 13.66p, which was an increase of 0.46p.