Marks & Spencer strengthens liquidity to help it through covid crisis
Marks & Spencer has taken steps to boost its liquidity to help it through the coronavirus pandemic.
In a statement, the retailer said lenders providing its £1.1 billion revolving credit facility have agreed to substantially relax or remove covenant conditions for tests arising this year and next. M&S has also been able to access the government’s covid corporate financing facility and is cutting costs and scrapping any dividend for the 20/21 financial year.
In an update on current trading, the retailer said it expects its clothing and homewares business to be “severely constrained” during lockdown and that trading conditions for the category will be highly uncertain during the prolonged exit period.
M&S revealed that its food business has also suffered during the lockdown due to the closure of cafes and a slowdown in store sales in travel locations and some city centres.
The retailer is due to report its preliminary full year results on 20 May when it says it will also provide an update on measures to reduce costs and protect cash flow.
It added: “The crisis has created a very different way of working and rapid learning for the business at all levels. At the time of the results presentation we will also outline measures being taken to accelerate the transformation programme and change ways of working permanently under our “never the same again” programme currently being prepared for implementation.”
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