Firecrest may be thrown off AIM

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The Independent Online
Shares in Firecrest will be suspended on Monday, heightening the prospect that the AIM-listed multi-media and marketing group will become the first company to be thrown off the Stock Exchange's fledgling junior market.

"The share suspension will definitely happen," said Malcolm Evans, Firecrest's managing director. "We have put finding a replacement for our nominated adviser and broker on hold."

Merchant bankers Singer & Friedlander and stockbroker Collins Stewart have indicated they plan to resign from the Firecrest account on Monday.

If a replacement nominated adviser and nominated broker were not appointed within one month, trading in Firecrest's shares on the Alternative Investment Market would be cancelled, the company said.

In the event of cancellation, the company said it would try to provide an alternative trading facility for its securities through the Ofex market. "That way there will be some liquidity in the shares," Mr Evans said.

The news came as Firecrest announced it was in discussions that may or may not lead to a recommended offer being made. But the shares fell 14p to 44.5p as investors focused on Firecrest's uncertain future.

Mr Evans declined to reveal the identity of the interested bidder, but hopes to make an announcement of a formal offer for Firecrest later next week. "We are looking at this in a positive frame of mind," he said.

Earlier this week Camelot Corporation, its largest external shareholder, sold its 10.5 per cent stake.