PIZZA Express says there are no skeleton to tighten outlets in a UK and Ireland – notwithstanding new fears it was on a verge of collapse.
The 482-strong chain, that has a huge £1.1billion debt pile, claimed yesterday: “Approximately 95 per cent of a UK Ireland restaurants are essential and there are no skeleton for closures outward a normal march of business.”
The assurances came as a chain’s Chinese owners pumped in £80million to boost a change piece and buy behind debt from bondholders.
However, a sequence certified trade conditions in a infrequent dining zone were tough amid Brexit doubt and “fragile” consumer confidence.
And a latest trade total showed UK and Ireland sales descending by 1.1 per cent over a 3 months to Sep 29.
The refurbish comes as Pizza Express stays in break talks over how to understanding with a towering of debt that triggered fears it could go bust.
PIZZA Express is putting adult a quarrel in a face of tough trade conditions on a high street.
It is revamping a UK and Ireland business, including grill refurbishments – that cost it £500,000 for 5 sites in a third entertain alone.
But carrying too many debt is never a good thing – demeanour during Thomas Cook, a transport hulk that buckled underneath a debt weight (and other headwinds).
What’s more, while many of Pizza Express’ restaurants sojourn essential for now, a UK consumer is really indeterminate during a moment.
This week, sell bosses including Steve Rowe from MS and George Weston from Primark have warned that a General Election will raise on a uncertainty, creation consumers even some-more “volatile”.
There are organisation to be winners and losers on a high street.
However, Pizza Express’ destiny is doubtful to be motionless overnight.
So far, a Chinese devotee appears patient, pumping in £80million yesterday.
Should a chain’s fortunes take a spin for a worst, it could try to find lease reductions or tighten outlets in a bid to move costs down. But there are no signs of that only yet.
It hired advisers during corporate financial organisation Houlihan Lokey to assistance talks with creditors.
Speculation began swirling around Pizza Express in a summer as news of a debt talks surfaced.
It was touted as a subsequent on a list of high transport dining casualties, after Jamie’s Italian collapsed and peers Prezzo and Carluccio’s shuttered sites.
The organisation has to compensate a initial complement of a debt repayments, value £465million in cumulative bonds, by Aug 2021.
Its subsequent amends for £200million in unsecured records is due to be repaid by a following year.
The sequence also owes another £467million in loans from Hony, yet these do not have to be repaid.
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