Jul 16, 2018

Debenhams dividend in jeopardy as retailer fights tough market

Debenhams faced the prospect of having to cut its dividend after the department store was hit by a combination of prolonged difficult trading conditions and a revision of some trade credit insurance terms. The drop followed weekend reports that three providers of trade credit insurance to suppliers had tightened their terms in response to Debenhams' financial position and current trading. In a statement, Debenhams said its balance sheet and cash position were healthy. At its half-year results in April, Debenhams had cash of £40m and had drawn down only £84m of a £320m bank credit facility. Fashion retailer New Look, which is currently in a CVA and carrying a greater debt burden than Debenhams, has operated with reduced supplier cover for around a year.

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