U.K. Pub Chains Toast £1.5 Billion of Virus-Relief Debt

(Bloomberg) --

U.K. pub companies including Greene King Plc, JD Wetherspoon Plc and Mitchells & Butlers Plc have raised at least 1.5 billion pounds ($1.9 billion) of debt since the country went into lock down in late March.

Britain’s top pub firms by revenue such as Wetherspoon and Marston’s Plc have tapped the bank-loan market and government programs to shore up finances against the impact of closing outlets and social distancing measures.

In additional to debt facilities, companies such as Fuller Smith & Turner Plc and Marston’s requested covenant waivers and other revisions to debt terms from lenders.

U.K. authorities are considering allowing pubs and restaurants to reopen from July 4, though social distancing rules forcing customers to keep two meters apart is likely to limit any rebound in revenue.

The table below shows borrowings and other financial actions of major pub chains.

CompanyBorrowingsOther financial actions
City Pub GroupGBP35m loan (plus additional GBP15m accordion)GBP22m equity

raised

Fuller Smith & TurnerGBP100m commercial paper under Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) scheme

Amended

covenants in banking agreements; has GBP155m undrawn revolving facility in place
Greene King

Raised

GBP165m subordinated financing
NA
J D WetherspoonFully drawn down revolving facility -- co. has GBP875m existing revolver due 2024: Bloomberg

data

Signed

covenant waivers;

expects to be eligible for up to GBP50m under Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS)

Marston’sNA

Waived

covenants;

forming

joint venture with Carlsberg -- to receive GBP273m cash payment
Mitchells & Butlers

Extended

GBP150m credit facilities and raised GBP100m under CLBILS
Waived covenants
Revolution Bars GroupObtained GBP16.5m under CLBILS;

increased

existing revolver to GBP30m from GBP21m
Amended covenants
Young & Co’s Brewery

Raised

new GBP50m syndicated loan, and additional GBP20m bilateral revolver; issued GBP30m commercial paper under CCFF scheme

Amended

covenants

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