Music company Sanctuary Group - which has received an unsolicited approach from smaller rival MAMA Group - yesterday posted an increase in first half losses but said it still had an independent future.
Sanctuary, which has artists such as Morrissey and The Strokes on its books, announced a widening in operating losses to £18.7 million for the six months to end-March versus £7.4 million in the same period last year.
Sanctuary, which was subject to an unsolicited approach from MAMA on July 14, said in a statement it was prepared to meet the company, which manages groups such as the Kaiser Chiefs and Franz Ferdinand, as soon as possible.
"However, we believe that the group has a strong, independent, long-term future," chairman Robert Ayling said in a statement.
MAMA, which includes the Barfly chain of live venues and Campus Group, a media and marketing agency targeting students and youth audiences, had said on Monday it might go ahead with an all-share bid even if its proposal was not recommended.
Sanctuary's revenue for the period fell to £65.6 million versus £67.7 million last year and operating losses after taxation widened to £ 26.6 million £11.5 million.
A refinancing on March 20 raised £110 million pounds and reduced net debt to £35.9 million £100.4 million in the same period last year.
Frank Presland, who took over as chief executive two months ago, said trading in the second half of the year was in line with management expectations.