Winchester Entertainment hasissued a profit warning for the financial year to March 31, 2002, in which itsays it will make a one off write-down of approximately£2 million to itschildren's TV programming assets.
However, the board of the companystressed in a statement that the expected low results are due to a number ofcircumstances such as the delayed delivery of a number of films previouslyanticipated for delivery in the year to March 31, 2002. "The companycurrently has net cash reserves of£8.1m and no borrowings," saidthe statement. "The board remains confident in Winchester's futureprospects."
Among the films beingdeveloped by Winchester in partnership with US companies include Harv TheBarbarian which recently underwent achange of elements to include new star Rob Schneider and a US distributor inthe shape of DreamWorks SKG, Daughter Of The Queen Of Sheba to which Gwyneth Paltrow and Meryl Streep areattached and Sam And George tostar Mel Gibson and be directed by Richard Donner. The first two films areunder Winchester's deal with Wind Dancer Films and the last with TheDonners Co.
Winchester, which is quotedon London's Alternative Investment Market (AIM), said it expected resultsfor the year to be substantially below the prior year. "Winchester hasnot been immune to the current downturn affecting the media sector," saidthe statement, "and consequently sales revenues for television licensingand merchandising are now anticipated to be below previous expectations."
Winchester's turnoverfor the six months ended Sept 30 were up to $5.91m, up from $3.46m during thesame period the previous year. But pre-tax profits were only up to $1.43m,compared to the previous year's $1.39m, due to a rise in operatingexpenses. But, declared the statement, "this year the final quarter isvery significant in determining the final outcome of the year."