Metrocentre and Eldon Square owner Intu confirms administration

Metrocentre owner Intu Properties has confirmed it has collapsed into administration.

Friday, 26th June 2020, 2:33 pm
Updated Friday, 26th June 2020, 2:34 pm

The company, which runs 17 shopping centres across the UK including the Metrocentre in Gateshead and Eldon Square in Newcastle, has entered the administration process after talks with lenders failed to reach an agreement.

But Intu confirmed that its shopping centres will continue to trade during the administration process. James Robert Tucker, Michael Robert Pink and David John Pike from KPMG have been appointed as administrators for the company.

The announcement came minutes after the London Stock Exchange suspended shares in the shopping centre owner.

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Earlier on Friday, June 26 the group said it was likely to appoint administrators, as it remained unable to agree the terms of such a deal with its creditors.

In a statement, the group, which had until midnight on Friday to reach a deal, said "insufficient alignment and agreement has been achieved".

Earlier this week, Intu said it put the administrators from KPMG on stand-by as it looked to secure a deal ahead of the midnight deadline on its current loan covenants.

The group has struggled under a £4.5 billion debt burden for the past year, but has been hammered by significantly lower rent payments from retail tenants since the coronavirus outbreak.

Intu employs about 3,000 staff across the UK, while a further 102,000 work for the shops within its shopping centres.

It warned on Tuesday, June 23 that its malls may be forced to shut if it was unable to secure the standstill agreement.

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