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Good news & bad news for UK legal publishers

In its latest round-up of media news, Fusion Corporate Partners – – report that Incisive Media Plc – best known in this market for Legal Week and the Strategic  IT Forum in Spain – is in or close to a breach of its banking covenants.
CEO Tim Weller has reportedly admitted that UK profits have fallen below the
level agreed with the bank when taking the company private in 2006 and
the company is looking to correct the situation. The US arm of the
business – which now includes the American Lawyer Media group – has a separate financing arrangement which is not in breach.
The company remains profitable and cash generative at a operating level.

In contrast, Wilmington Group Plc (the company behind Central Law Training and the Solicitors Journal and Managing Partner magazines, among other things) in its interim results for the six months ending
31st December 2008, reports revenue from continuing operations up by
13% to £43.1M (2007: £38.1M), with adjusted PBT up by 9% to £5.9M
(2007: £5.5M), and statutory PBT of £2M (2007: £3.3M). The Professional
Publishing & Information division reported profits up 20%, with a
mixed performance from the Professional Training & Events division.
Wilmington's performance is weighted towards the second half of the
financial year, and whilst it expects the continued deterioration in
the legal training market to impact on the full financial year, it is
still open to making acquisitions which are a strategic fit.