Blis price spike due to top-ups

Dunedin-based Blis Technologies has responded to a New Zealand stock exchange ''please explain'' request - over its share price spiking more than 170% - saying shareholders were topping up their stakes.

Fraser Wyeth, of NZX market services, requested Blis publicly disclose whether it had any ''material information'', which may have affected its share price gaining 173%, from 1.1c per share to 3c recently.

Blis chief executive Dr Barry Richardson said Blis had given its shareholders three months' notice to enforce a rule requiring they hold a minimum 25,000 shares, because of the cost of administration on such small parcels. Holdings below 25,000 at March 1 would be automatically purchased, or with shareholder agreement, donated to Cure Kids.

Dr Richardson said about 1600 small shareholders were affected by the new minimum holding requirement, and would have to buy more shares if they wanted to remain as shareholders.

''Due to the lack of liquidity in the market for Blis shares, shareholders who are seeking to top up their holdings may have influenced the market price,'' he said in the disclosure statement.

Mr Wyeth's ''please explain'' request covered only the share price spike, and did not question the large increase in the volume of shares traded this week - about 4 million as opposed to a more typical rate of about 400,000 shares a week.

Craigs Investment Partners broker Greg Easton said the recent trading ''consistency'' of 1 million Blis shares changing hands during each of the past four days was ''unusual''. The 1.4 million shares traded on Wednesday were worth just $41,000.

- simon.hartley@odt.co.nz

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