Shopping centre owner Intu has collapsed into administration, after failing to secure its future during crunch talks with lenders.
The firm, which owns a number of centres in the Midlands, had been in a desperate scramble to agree a “standstill” on its current loan agreements.
On Friday morning the group said it was likely to appoint administrators, as it remained unable to agree the terms of such a deal with its creditors.
Intu shopping centres in the Midlands:
intu Broadmarsh, Nottingham
intu Merry Hill, West Midlands
intu Potteries, Stoke on Trent
intu Victoria Centre, Nottingham
In a statement the group, which has until midnight on Friday to reach a deal, said “insufficient alignment and agreement has been achieved”.
It added: “The board is therefore considering the position of Intu with a view to protecting the interests of its stakeholders.
“This is likely to involve the appointment of administrators. A further announcement will be made as soon as possible.”
Earlier this week, Intu said it put administrators from KPMG on stand-by as it looked to secure a deal ahead of the midnight deadline on its current loan covenants.
The group has struggled under a £4.5 billion debt burden for the past year, but has been hammered by significantly lower rent payments from retail tenants since the coronavirus outbreak.
Intu employs about 3,000 staff across the UK, while a further 102,000 work for the shops within its shopping centres.
It warned on Tuesday that its malls may be forced to shut if it was unable to secure the standstill agreement.