Unexpected loss hits Hi-Tec shares

Click to follow
The Independent Online
SHARES in Hi-Tec, the sports and leisurewear company, yesterday plunged 33p to 45p following worse than expected results. Hi-Tec also fired its auditor, KPMG Peat Marwick, replacing it with Touche Ross, writes William Gleeson.

The company reported a loss before tax for the six months to July of pounds 7.1m, down from a profit of pounds 776,000 for the same period last year. The City had expected a first-half profit of pounds 2m.

Hi-Tec stressed its continuing operations made pounds 1m profit. Some pounds 5m of the loss was due to goodwill write- offs on the disposal of Cofex, a loss- making fashion subsidiary.

Hi-Tec said it sacked its auditor in line with 'best practice', having had the same auditor for eight years. However, a spokesman for KPMG said there was no such 'best practice', and suggested the change was probably due to a lower fee quote from Touche Ross. Hi-Tec denied the change had anything to do with fees.