Prezzo, the Italian restaurant chain, is feeling the effects of the credit crunch as its pre-tax profit has fallen from £4.7m to £2.9m, on sales up from £32.5m to £41.4m. The company complained that the six months to the end of June provided some of the most challenging trading conditions it had experienced since its foundation eight years ago. It now operates from 138 sites but because of the “uncertain economic climate” a roll-out programme has been cut back. Back in May the company admitted it had received a takeover approach and last week said discussions to put together a bid package were ongoing. But with the share prospects looking less appetising the case for mounting a bid must look less compelling to the would-be bidders. The Independent (Money) 20/09/08 page 67

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