The Rank Group has confirmed recent press speculation that suggested that the firm is considering a share issue to boost finances, noting that it is a “possibility”.
Issuing a statement regarding the issue, the firm, which owns Grosvenor Casinos as well as Mecca Bingo, said that a potential issuance of up to a maximum of 19.9 per cent of its issued share capital would be done with the intention of strengthening its balance sheet.
The group initially saw its roster of venues close in mid-March during the UK’s first lockdown, with establishments in England now shutdown once again from today as another countrywide lockdown comes into force.
In September, Rank said that it had “entered lockdown with significant momentum to revenues and profits,” as group underlying net revenue for the year ending June 30, 2020, closed at $585.1m, a 15 per cent drop from £685.1m year-on-year. Net gaming revenue for the period closed at an eight per cent decline from £695.1m to £638.1m.
The company’s media statement in full reads: “Rank notes the recent press speculation regarding the possibility of the company undertaking an equity issue.
“The board continuously reviews the group’s financial position and confirms it is in discussions with its advisers regarding a potential equity issuance of up to a maximum of 19.9 per cent of its issued share capital.
“Such an equity issuance would be intended to strengthen Rank’s balance sheet in this unprecedented trading environment. There can be no certainty that the equity issuance will proceed. A further update will be provided if and as appropriate.”
Last month, Rank disclosed that its has reached an agreement to sell its Belgian casino business, encapsulating its Blankenberge casino and associated digital licence, to Kindred Group for £25m, subject to regulatory approvals by the Belgian Gaming Commission and the Blankenberge City Council.