Department store group V&D has received a new cash injection of €47m from its owner, private equity investor Sun Capital.
The new investment is a buy-out of the bank consortium which has been propping up V&D since its financial problems became apparent earlier this year. However, the supervision put in place by Rabobank, ABN Amro and ING was becoming irksome to the group, V&D CEO John van der Ent told the Financieele Dagblad.
‘It was costing a lot of time,’ Van der Ent told the paper. ‘My CFO and I were constantly in consultation, and not with one bank but with three. And they all had their own input. This was putting limits on our room for manoeuvre.’
V&D is currently in serious financial trouble. The company, which has 63 department stores in the Netherlands, has agreed a temporary rent cut with its landlords and is in talks with the unions on reducing the workforce.
It has also halved its management team, from 11 to four.
Van der Ent is not worried that the cost of the refinancing will rise or that Sun Capital will take money out of V&D by, for instance, issuing a super dividend. ‘That would not make sense for them. What does make sense is to create a healthy V&D,’ he told the FD.
The new cash injection, for which the period has been extended from two to four years, is the third from Sun Capital which is headquartered in the US.
Sun Capital took over V&D in 2010 and invested €105m in the stores, of which €65 was in the form of three loans. In February this year, Sun Capital injected a further €60m into the company, of which half was a loan.
In March, broadcaster RTLZ said V&D is paying 8% interest on these loans. Neither V&D nor Sun Capital would confirm the interest rate.
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