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Northamber trims losses as H1 sales fall

Microscope contributor

Northamber has managed to narrow first half pre-tax losses but sales fell as the "challenging" commercial environment continued to hit IT spending.


In the fiscal six months ended 31 December, revenues fell 6% to £68.1m as pre-tax losses shrunk from £304,000 in the same period a year earlier to £41,000.


"The previously reported factors affecting our business include a dependence on customers who are subject to the vagaries of largely discretionary corporate expenditure," said David Phillips, Northamber chairman.


"That uncertainty within the corporate sector has not yet shown signs of becoming more settled," he added.


The Surrey-based distributor said the "harsh trading environment" had resulted in a review of its vendor portfolio - only recently it was given its marching orders by LG - and further reduction in overheads to balance operating sales and costs.


Phillips said it had maintained conservative management of working capital, particularly of cash flow and balances, "however with returns on cash at an all time low, our investment revenue was only £42,000 compared with £283,000."


The business remains debt free and had cash in the bank of £13.48m at the end of last calendar year. However, although the UK is officially out of recession, Northamber's boss remained clear about the challenges ahead.


"Whilst not wishing to be pessimistic, we see little evidence to the contrary. We will continue to carefully monitor our performance on a daily basis," said Phillips.


"We believe our continued strategy of managing cost best matches the current uncertainties," he added.


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