Network Data vows to grow

Network Data Group has pledged to grow its business and play a central role in any future consolidation among mortgage networks.

This is despite revealing a £1.1m pre-tax loss in its 2007 full-year results last week, compared with a £271,000 profit in 2006.

In its results statement, the group says the loss was due to the underperformance of its Home Information Pack business Hipstar, which it attributes to the delayed introduction of HIPs last year.

But the group’s mortgage network Network Data Limited reported a gross profit of £8.2m.

Richard Griffiths, chief executive of Network Data Holdings, says: “The group faced a number of challenges last year, most notably the delayed and phased implementation of the HIP initiative and the well publicised and widespread difficulties in the mortgage and property markets.

“These factors aff-ected our profitability. but the core business, Network Data Limited, achieved good growth in its business volumes and increased its profit before tax by a healthy 26%.”

He adds: “We continue to operate as one of the largest mortgage broking networks in the UK and anticipate that our HIP business will gather momentum during the year.”

The group will be maintaining its dividend of 0.35p per share, payable on May 9 to shareholders on the register as of May 2.

This is despite it reporting a loss per share of 2.9p in 2007 compared with earnings per share of 0.5p in 2006.