AIT loses a third of its value on profits warning

AIT loses a third of its value on profits warning

Shares in UK CRM vendor AIT sunk by 33.6% in early morning trading, losing 18 pence from a weekend close of 53.50, after the company warned that current year results will be below market expectations.

AIT reported a return to full-year profitability in June this year after a turbulent few years when a previously unforeseen profits warning precipitated a full-blown financial crisis. The company turned in an operating profit of £1.3 million before exceptional income of £1 million for the year ending 31 March 2004, compared to an operating loss of £15.3 million and exceptional charges of £23 million in 2003.

In a new trading update, AIT says results for the current year will be lower than anticipated, due to disappointing uptake of its professional services and a delay in securing a deal with an un-named overseas public services firm for its Portrait product.

AIT says: "The tendering process for this licence has lasted considerably longer than we had previously been led to believe. It is now clear that this delay in the tendering process will result in less revenue being able to be booked in the current financial year than had previously been anticipated."

The vendor now expects profits before tax and exceptional items for the current year to be lower than current market expectations, although it expects them to be ahead of the equivalent figure achieved in the year ended 31 March 2004.

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