Next has announced its Trading Statement covering first quarter sales performance for the period 26 January to 25 April 2020.
An overview of the company's position is as follows:
Sales: The fall off in sales to date has been faster and steeper than anticipated in its March stress test and the company is now modelling lower sales for both the first and second half of the year.
Costs Cash Facilities: Next believes it can achieve higher cost savings and stock cancellations than originally anticipated.
Cash Resources: Next has increased the company’s cash resources through asset sales, and through suspending share buybacks and dividends.
Facilities: Further steps to secure debt finances by agreeing with banks to waive the financial covenants in our Revolving Credit Facility (RCF) for the coming year have been achieved. Next have also secured additional borrowing facilities through the Government’s Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) though, at this time, think it's unlikely that it will need to draw on these additional funds.
The conclusion is that Next believe that the finances of the Company are as secure as when announced in March.
Much will depend on its ability to continue increasing the capacity of online operations.