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House of Fraser eyes growth after refinancing

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Department store group House of Fraser has today completed the full refinancing of its business, allowing it to continue developing its own brands and multichannel platforms, as well as open more stores.

By issuing a £250 million bond earlier this month the retailer’s parent company Highland Group Holdings has also cleared all of its £214.5 million debt from the last financial year and can now focus on its three key strategic initiatives in the months ahead.

The bond, which will be listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange, carries a seven-year term and will provide an annual coupon of 8.875 per cent. Interest will be payable semi-annually.

House of Fraser has also this week secured a new revolving credit facility of £70 million through Deutsche Bank, Barclays, HSBC and Lloyds Banking Group to aid its growth plans.

Don McCarthy, Chairman of House of Fraser, said: “We are delighted to have successfully completed the full refinancing of the business.

“This will provide the group with long-term financing and a flexible and stable platform to focus on strengthening our market position as the leading premium department store group in the UK and Ireland.”

In May House of Fraser announced that its like-for-like sales increased by 4.1 per cent year-on-year in the 12 months to January 29th 2011.

EBITDA rose from £59.4 million to £85.7 million during the same period, while the retailer’s net financial debt was reduced by £78 million.

A statement from the department store group at the time revealed that sales of its own lines, such as fashion brand Biba, were up 50 per cent on the previous year, helping to drive the company’s impressive growth.

Published on Wednesday 01 June by Editorial Assistant

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