Shares 

3i makes solid progress

Faced with big investment losses last year, private equity investor 3i (III) made steady progress in the first half while also reducing its cost base. Around one third of the group's headcount will be cut by March next year and the number of offices will be reduced from 19 to 13. Annualised cost savings are expected to reach £40m by March, rising to £45m a year later. Add that to an improved investment performance and the discount to net assets that the shares currently trade at could narrow.

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