Mar 29, 2019

Embattled retailer Debenhams agrees £200m financing deal

Debenhams said it has agreed £200m of new facilities with its lenders, but kept the door open for major shareholder Sports Direct to participate in an equity-backed rescue. Debenhams said the facility had been approved by holders of its existing unsecured bonds and the trustees of its two defined-benefit pension schemes. Terry Duddy, the company's interim chairman, said the package "Secures the future of the Debenhams business and provides reassurance for Debenhams' employees, pension holders, suppliers, lenders and other stakeholders." Debenhams said the possible offer announced by Sports Direct earlier this week "Did not provide a solution to the group's immediate working capital needs, and the board could find no way for the group to continue to trade until such time as the offer had closed." The early signs do not look promising, however; Sports Direct's founder and chief executive Mike Ashley earlier Friday morning issued a harshly-worded statement about the advisers on the deal.

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