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Burton pub firm edges towards securing its own future

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: June 27, 2014

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A BURTON-based pub giant has revealed that it is edging closer to reaching a deal that will secure its future.

Punch Taverns, based in Centrum 100, announced that an influential set of bondholders now supported company restructure proposals, bringing an end to years of negotiation.

The news was announced as the firm revealed its latest set of financial figures for the 16 weeks to June 21, which showed that it was on track to meet its profits expectations.

Stephen Billingham, executive chairman of Punch Taverns, spoke to the Mail following the announcement.

He said: “We continue to make progress toward a consensual restructuring.

“These proposals have a high level of support, which reflects the hard work of a large number of stakeholders.

“There are still hurdles to be overcome before reaching complete agreement but we view the current situation as very positive and that a successful restructuring can be implemented.

“Continued constructive dialogue and determination from all involved will be required to achieve this.”

The firm revealed that its core estate like-for-like net income was up by 1.4 per cent in the third quarter.

Bosses expect efforts to dispose of unwanted pubs to rake in around £100 million by the end of the financial year, with remaining pubs receiving “substantial” investment of around, on average, £100,000 per pub.

Earlier this year the Mail reported how Punch had struck a deal to extend talks with bondholders over its future.

If the deal had not been reached, the firm could have been forced to pay debts that are estimated to rise into the billions.

Talks are set to continue with other bondholders to rubber-stamp the deal.

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