Hammerson seeks £600m COVID bail out

Hammerson is preparing to ask shareholders for around £600 million to help the company survive the Coronavirus.

Sky News reported that a rights issue could raise more than the shopping centre owner's current market capitalisation.

It is currently in talks with Dutch pension fund APG to sell its 50 per cent stake in VIA Outlets, a portfolio of European shopping destinations, as part of a strategy to shore up group finances.

Hammerson's share price has dropped by 70 per cent in the last year, as only 16 per cent of the rent it was owed by retail tenants was collected ahead of the third quarter.

Last week, Hammerson issued £75 million of debt under the government’s COVID corporate financing facility, which follows the company accessing the Coronavirus support scheme earlier in the month.

Separately, Hammerson stated that chief executive David Atkins will step down by next spring.

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