Intu receives only third of rent

Intu revealed that it has received only 29% of its second quarter rent that was due from tenants on 25 March.

For the same period last year, it had received 77% on the quarter day, and the group is now in discussions with its customers regarding the outstanding rents. 

In light of the “rapidly evolving” coronavirus pandemic, all Intu centres in the UK and Spain are operating on a semi-closed basis.  

Only essential stores within the centres, such as supermarkets, pharmacies and banks, now remain open.

In light of the ongoing pandemic, the group has significantly reduced capital expenditure “for the foreseeable future” and is cutting back on head office costs to help preserve cash within the business. 

The group, which owns the Trafford Centre in Manchester and Lakeside in Essex,  has also initiated a programme of reducing non-essential service charge costs. In addition, it has begun an “ongoing dialogue” with the UK government, with possible plans to access its £330bn support package.

It added that government measures such as business rates suspension, employee cost support and tax payment deferrals are also “expected to have a positive impact”.

In a statement, the group said: “The reduced social activity is likely to continue for the foreseeable future impacting our footfall and potential future rents. 

“The impact of the reduced rents received is expected to require us to seek covenant waivers and we are in constructive discussions with the relevant lenders.”

It added: “In these difficult times we continue to assess all strategic alternatives and will provide further updates as appropriate.”  

“Given the ongoing uncertainty around COVID-19, we are no longer able to provide guidance in relation to the 2020 financial year.”

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