Pure Beauty

Intu calls in administrators after discussions with lenders break down

By Becky Bargh | Published: 29-Jun-2020

In May, the UK retail company warned it could enter administration is it was unable to reach a standstill strategy with stakeholders

Struggling retail giant intu has filed for administration after failing to reach an agreement with lenders.

In May, the British shopping centre owner warned if it was unable to reach a standstill strategy with financial stakeholders it could be forced to call in administrators.

Intu has shopping centres in Derby, Watford, Glasgow and Essex, and rents space to a number of beauty brands, including MAC, The Body Shop, Kiko Milano and Lush.

Last week, it confirmed discussions had collapsed and a filing was made to multinational conglomerate KPMG.

Speaking about the decision, Jim Tucker, a KPMG partner, said: “intu owns many of the UK’s biggest and best-known shopping centres.

“The challenges affecting the UK retail [market] are well known and have been exacerbated by the impact of Covid-19 and the resulting lockdown.

“As today’s administration makes clear, those challenges have fed through to owners of retail property, even to owners of high-quality shopping centres such as intu’s.”

Earlier this month, Debenhams was forced to close three more stores after discussions with intu, the stores’ landlord, broke down.

David Pike, another KPMG partner who will also be advising the firm, added: “With all centres remaining open, we look forward to working with staff, suppliers and other key stakeholders to preserve value and jobs in these important retail destinations.”

In addition to the filing, the Financial Conduct Authority has suspended listing of Intu’s original shares and the London Stock Exchange has halted the trading of intu’s shares.

However, this suspension will not affect the listing and trading of intu’s listed debt securities.

According to the firm, its 17 part-owned shopping centres in the UK and Spain will continue to trade throughout the period.

In a statement, it said: “The shopping centre operating companies have or are expected to enter into transitional services agreements with the administrators of the central entities to ensure continuity of service provision by the central entities to the individual shopping centres.”

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