Pubs and Bars

City Pub Group to ‘preserve cash’ amid Covid-19 outbreak

Recent trading at the City Pub Group has been “impacted” by Covid-19 and its wider effects, the pub operator has revealed. 

In its latest update regarding the virus, the group said that there was a “particular” impact on sport, and that certain sites have “witnessed noticeable reductions in trade as a result”.

The group will now be taking a “highly prudent approach” with a “number of proactive measures” to reduce costs and preserve cash. 

These measures include a reduction in employee costs across head office and at site level, and a reduction in variable costs such as BT Sport and entertainment.

The group will also reduce director salaries by 25%, and review trading hours to reduce “non-productive” opening times.

In a newly released statement, City Pub Group said: “Based on the above actions, the board is confident the company has sufficient working capital to maintain its operations for at least another six months without further capital, even in the event the government extends its current guidance and mandates a temporary closure of all pubs and bars. 

“The company is also entering into negotiations with its landlords to seek rent holidays for the next 3-6 months. The Company’s bankers, Barclays, also remain supportive.”

It added that it would be difficult to “accurately assess” the extent of the impact on trading and financial performance as a result of the virus. 

The group does, however, expect a “material reduction” to its expectations for 2020. 

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