O woe is InterX trading

Needs new owner

The game as an independent looks over for InterX, the UK content management software developer. Today it issued a trading statement and depressing reading it makes too for shareholders in the former stock market darling.

The company is losing £1m a month, and it has approx. £5m left in the bank. In the light of poor sales, InterX is discussing ways of conserving cash and maximising shareholder value. Read job cuts - and call to investment bank to hawk the business.

InterX is not doing the numbers, and neither does it expect to in the current climate, for it is having trouble converting prospects for its Net2020 platform to firm sales.

The company blames market conditions for lengthening sales cycles, but more worryingly, it notes that customers are plumping for enterprise solutions from established global market leaders.

In today's climate, InterX is not the safe option, and the only way it could achieve this status is by selling itself, possibly at a knockdown price, to a bigger player able to distribute and market its well-regarded software to an established client base.

InterX's woes are compounded by a deal struck in headier times with Diligenti, a US online pharmaceutical industry publisher. It lent the company £ 16.4m and was due to receive this, along with £1.6m in interest, on December 31. Unfortunately, Diligenti was unable to make the date, as its ability to pay was contingent on receiving third round financing. Which it didn't get.

InterX has a fixed and floating charge over the assets Diligenti which includes a 59 per cent stake in Exemplar International inc., a NASDAQ-quoted company. Interesting to see how liquid this will prove, in the event of Diligenti failing to cough up hard cash.

InterX has worked its way through a lot of money. The company issued a share placing raising £50m in March 2000, just days before the NASDAQ crash which signalled the bursting of the dotcom bubble. The company also raised £18m through the sale of Ideal Hardware, and another £ £16m or so through the sale of the freeholds of buildings used by Ideal.

At its peak InterX shares were more than £438, valuing the business at £1.4bn In trading today they crashed 41p to 26.5p. ®

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