Funding crisis hits B2B group

B2B publisher Charterhouse Communications has stopped trading on the stock exchange due to a funding crisis the company is blaming on the mortgage market.

The company, which publishes a number of mortgage and investment titles including Mortgage Introducer and What Mortgage, announced last week that trading in its shares had been suspended pending confirmation of its funding.

Charterhouse Communications managing director Andy Beevers told Press Gazette: ‘Because of difficult trading conditions in the mortgage market, we are seeking extra funding and we are currently in discussions with our bank and other potential sources of finance. We are trading and publishing as normal.”

Charterhouse Communications’ share price has fallen from 2.63p to 0.5p in the past six months. In a trading statement issued in January, the company blamed ‘the well-documented market conditions affecting the domestic mortgage market in the UK’for the ‘significant effect’on its revenues during the last quarter of 2007.

The company’s profits for the year ending 31 May 2008 will be ‘significantly affected’and are likely to be ‘below market expectations”.

The mortgage magazine market is increasingly feeling the secondary effects of the credit crunch. Earlier this month Charterhouse relaunched its main title Mortgage Introducer and launched a new monthly called Commercial Finance Introducer in a bid to find new advertising revenues.

B2B rival Centaur closed two B2B monthlies, citing ‘market conditions’in February. The free controlled circulation titles Mortgage Distributor and Loan Distributor have gone online only from this month.

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