Feb 12 Yellow Pages publisher Hibu Plc,
which is grappling with a heavy debt load, said it remains in
talks with lenders and expects to reach a deal on restructuring
its debt "in the near future."
Hibu said in October that it would suspend debt repayments
and that it planned to present a restructuring proposal to
lenders by January to clean up its balance sheet by the first
half of 2013.
Hibu had just over 2 billion pounds ($3.13 billion) of debt
as of Dec. 31, built up in a series of acquisitions including a
3.3 billion euro ($4.42 billion) deal to buy a Spanish
directories business in 2006.
Like other directories publishers, Hibu has been struggling
to cope with a slide in its print businesses as more people turn
to the Internet for local listings.
The company said revenue fell 14 percent to 314 million
pounds in the quarter ended Dec. 31. Revenue at its print and
other directory businesses fell 22 percent.
However, revenue at its digital services business rose 31
percent. Digital revenue now makes up 36 percent of overall
revenue, up from 30 percent last year.
Shares in the company, which once traded at more than 600
pence, were up 3 percent at 0.34 pence at 0804 GMT on the London
Stock Exchange on Tuesday.