He put the titles, including Asian Babes and Forum, up for sale earlier this year with a price tag of £20 million. Talks were under way with three buyers, but Desmond failed to agree a price any of them.
The magazines are owned by Portland Investments and Fantasy Publications, which are part of Desmond's Northern & Shell publishing group.
Some analysts now say it will be hard for Desmond to float the company while it still owns a stable of top-shelf magazines, but Desmond is not thought to be willing to risk a share offering in the current economic climate.
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This article was first published on Campaign