Orders disappoint at KCOM - UPDATE

Broadband and communications provider KCOM has fallen following a downbeat trading statement prior to its interims.

Broadband and communications provider KCOM has fallen following a downbeat trading statement prior to its interims.

It announced that it is trading "in line with expectations", but orders in its enterprise division have been below expectations.

KCOM also revealed that first-half net debt has increased as a result of share scheme purchases and planned increases in capital expenditure. At the last year-end (March 31st), net debt was reported as £75m.

Bill Halbert, Executive Chairman, commented: "The continuing macro-economic uncertainty is resulting in slower new business investment decision making and this is likely to remain the case through the second half of the year."

When questioned, a company spokesperson denied that this was a veiled profits warning and Halbert himself has restated the company's "commitment to delivering a minimum 10% increase in full-year dividend".

Earlier this week Oriel Securities downgraded KCOM and issued a 'hold' recommendation.

The group's interims for the half year ending September 30th are due to be announced on November 27th.

CM

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