MelloMonday, 13th November 2023, 5pm - 8.30pm

5.00 pm ‘F’ stands for Flop or a Fraud? Roger Lawson discusses Michael Lewis’s latest book on the collapse of FTX and the conviction of Sam Bankman-Fried for fraud
5.30 pm Company presentation by Trident Royalties plc
6.00 pm Market updates with Michael Taylor
6.20 pm Q&A session with Sosandar
6.50 pm Company introductory presentation by Solid State plc
7.30 pm BASH panel with Kevin Taylor and Mark Simpson

Company Presentation – Solid State

 Solid State plc (SOLI) is a value added electronics group supplying commercial, industrial and defence markets with durable components, assemblies, manufactured units and power units for use in specialist and harsh environments. The Group’s mantra is – ‘Trusted technology for demanding environments’. To see an introductory video on the Group –

Operating through two main divisions: Systems (Steatite, Active Silicon & Custom Power) and Components (Solid State Supplies, Pacer, Willow Technologies & AEC); the Group specialises in complex engineering challenges often requiring design-in support and component sourcing for computing, power, communications, electronic, electro-mechanical and opto-electronic products.

Headquartered in Redditch, UK, Solid State employs approximately 400 staff across the UK and US, serving specialist markets with high barriers to entry in industrial, defence and security, transportation, medical and energy.  Solid State was established in 1971 and admitted to AIM in June 1996. The Group has grown organically and by acquisition – having made three acquisitions in the last three years.

Gary Marsh, CEO

Gary Marsh joined the Company in 1986. He has held various positions within the Group including that of Operations Director of Solid State Supplies prior to his appointment as its Managing Director in 1997. In addition to this role, Gary Marsh was appointed Group Managing Director in 2002 following the acquisition of Steatite. In 2010 following the acquisition of Rugged Systems Ltd he was appointed Chief Executive Officer.

Peter James, Group Finance Director

Peter James qualified as a Chartered Accountant with PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLP in 2003. He was appointed to the Board of Solid State Plc in February 2017, having joined from IQE plc, where he was Group Financial Controller and a key member of the senior leadership team, successfully completing two significant transactions, and a member of the integration and standardisation team, aligning the enlarged Group with its customer markets serviced by manufacturing sites, delivering improved efficiency and material cost savings. As a Senior Manager with PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLP Peter gained a wide range of experience in Audit and Financial Due Diligence teams working with and advising a broad range of companies in a variety of sectors, including multinational main market and AIM listed companies.

Q&A session with Sosandar (LON:SOS)

Sosandar is one of the fastest growing women’s fashion brands in the UK targeting style conscious women who have graduated from price-led alternatives. The Company offers this underserved audience fashion-forward, affordable, quality clothing to make them feel sexy, feminine, and chic. The business sells predominantly own-label exclusive product designed in-house.

Sosandar’s product range is diverse, providing its customers with an array of choice for all occasions across all women’s fashion categories. The company sells through and has brand partnerships in place with Next, Marks & Spencer, The Very Group, JD Williams and J Sainsbury.

Sosandar’s strategy is to continue growing brand awareness and expand its customer database, whilst also further driving its high levels of customer retention. This is achieved through its exceptional products, seamless customer experience and impactful, lifestyle marketing activities all of which is underpinned by combining innovation with data analysis.

Julie Lavington, Joint-CEO

Former fashion magazine publishing director, Julie Lavington, is co-founder and joint CEO of Sosandar.

In 2007, Julie launched Look magazine, a leading UK women’s fashion publication. During her tenure, Julie steered Look to have a multi-platform presence with a wide social media reach. She diversified into producing successful Look branded clothing ranges with leading UK fashion retailers. Julie was awarded the prestigious Publisher of the Year Award in 2010 by the Professional Publishers Association. From August 2014, Julie was also publishing director of UK InStyle magazine a global fashion brand published in 17 countries worldwide.

Prior to her role at Look and InStyle, Julie was publishing director of the TV portfolio at H. Bauer from 2001 to 2006, where she took TV Choice from fledgling brand to market leader. She has also held publishing roles on numerous women’s brands, including Marie Claire, after starting her career in advertising sales following a modern languages degree at Durham University. Julie is experienced in consumer research, sales and marketing, logistics and manufacturing, the development of customer-focused businesses, and in the recruitment and development of multi-disciplined teams.

Julie Lavington & Ali Hall, Joint CEOs

Alison Hall, Joint-CEO

Former fashion magazine editor, Alison Hall, is co-founder and joint CEO of Sosandar.

Prior to founding Sosandar in 2015, Alison was editor of Look magazine. After its launch in 2007, Alison helped it grow to become a leading fashion magazine title. Alison has been a highly influential fashion editor, and has twice been awarded the Editor of the Year (Women’s Magazines (weekly or fortnightly)) accolade by the British Society of Magazine Editors. During her tenure at Look, Alison designed successful clothing ranges for several of the UK’s top retailers.

Starting out as a reporter for regional newspapers, Alison began her magazine career at EMAP’s Slimming magazine. Recruited by Bliss magazine as deputy editor in 2001, Alison was promoted to acting editor, and six months later moved to More magazine as editor, where she successfully implemented a major relaunch of the title. Alison has also been a fashion contributor to both local and national radio and TV shows.

Steve joined Sosandar from Regatta, the outdoor apparel business in September 2020 as Finance Director and was appointed Chief Financial Officer in May 2021 . Steve is CIMA qualified and has a broad skillset gained across a number of roles in highly complex organisations with a blend of financial, commercial and strategic experience.

During his eleven years at Regatta, the last four as Finance Director, Steve supported the Group’s consistent double-digit growth across multiple brands, countries and channels including wholesale, own retail, concessions and online. He was also the finance lead for several key strategic projects including the Group’s Brexit planning and the implementation of group wide new IT systems.

Prior to his tenure at Regatta, Steve held a broad range of financial and commercial roles in retail and FMCG organisations including Kraft Foods and The Co-Operative Group.

Steve Dilks, CFO

Company Presentation – Trident Royalties plc

Trident Royalties is a fast-growing diversified mining royalty company listed on London’s AIM market and the OTCQB in the US. Trident provides investors with exposure to the full breadth of the mining sector (excluding thermal coal). Its global portfolio includes precious, base and battery metals, and bulk/industrial minerals, across assets which are either in advanced development or in production. Its attractive commodity mix offers investors with a natural inflation hedge whilst insulating shareholders from rising operating and capital costs.

Trident has accelerated deal flow in 2023 and has completed three acquisitions this year including further gold and lithium royalties, as well as the company’s first exposure to silver. Furthermore, Trident completed a competitive sales process of several of its pre-production gold royalties, delivering a 140% return on investment. Trident’s portfolio currently consists of 20 assets, 13 of which are cash flowing and the Company were pleased to report 45% increase in H1 2023 royalty receipts, in comparison with H1 2022. Trident are therefore well capitalised to act on a deep pipeline of new opportunities.

Trident is poised to capitalise on the EV transition with lithium, copper and silver royalties. A cornerstone asset of Trident’s portfolio is the Thacker Pass Lithium Project, the largest known lithium resource in North America. Trident holds a 60% interest in a gross revenue royalty over the entire Thacker Pass Lithium project. At full production and using current lithium prices, the royalty could generate circa $25 million per year.

Trident, led by a global management team with significant mining private equity, banking, operational, and commodity markets experience, has an extensive pipeline of future opportunities as the Company looks to accelerate deal flow. The Company has delivered significant shareholder returns since inception and is targeting mid-teen post-tax returns on its expanding portfolio, whilst reducing Trident’s cost of capital.

Adam Davidson, CEO

Adam Davidson has over 10 years of experience in the natural resources sector, most recently with Resource Capital Funds, a leading mining-focused private equity firm. Prior to RCF, Adam held positions with BMO Capital Markets in Metals & Mining Equity Research and with Orica Mining Services in Strategic Planning. He has extensive mining capital markets experience across a breadth of jurisdictions and commodities. Adam began his career with T. Rowe Price and also served in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Adam is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and previously served as a Non-Executive Director of private gold producer RG Gold. He earned his MBA from the College of William & Mary and completed a post-graduate in Mining Studies from the University of Arizona.

‘F’ stands for Flop or a Fraud?    Roger Lawson discusses Michael Lewis’s latest book on the collapse of FTX and the conviction of Sam Bankman-Fried for fraud

Roger Lawson will discover what can be learned from Michael Lewis’s latest book on the collapse of FTX and the conviction of Sam Bankman-Fried for fraud. Possibly the biggest US fraud with over $10 billion lost by investors in cryptocurrencies – yes that’s TEN BILLION dollars which mostly disappeared!

He will also cover the lessons in his own book (“Business Perspective Investing”) that might have enabled some folks to avoid the total wipe out in this and other such cases.

Roger Lawson

Roger Lawson obtained an M.B.A. from Cranfield Business School and is a Member of the British Computer Society.

He acted as an IT consultant in several software companies (including ICL/Fujitsu) and was IT director of a large retailing company.

More recently he has been a director of a number of private companies in the software and e-payment sectors and has been active in promoting the interests of private shareholders in public companies as a founding director and Chairman of the UK Individual Shareholders Society (ShareSoc) and a former director of the UK Shareholders Association (UKSA).

Market updates with Michael Taylor

Michael Taylor’s YouTube channel is being relaunched with a free trading course, click here to visit the channel.

Michael Taylor is a full-time UK trader of his own private capital since December 2016. He is willing to take a contrarian view and go against prevailing sentiment, relying on price action analysis to generate alpha.

My Trading Philosophy

I have a rules based system trading both directions which draws heavily on technical analysis and some use of Level 2. Being net short in February and March 2020 delivered positive returns as global equities slid across the board due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis. This method was described in detail in my free short selling guide.

Risk management is the most important factor for me as capital drawdowns work against traders exponentially. I run technical filters that allow me to focus find strong names without listening to the noise, and I share these concepts in my email subscription and in my writing.

If you have any questions or would like to get in touch, you can email me directly at

The Mello BASH (Buy, Avoid, Sell & Hold)

Kevin Taylor Private Investor 

Mark Simpson Private Investor

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