BREWER and pub firm Marston’s has secured a waiver from a potential banking covenant breach after closing its outlets to halt the spread of the coronavirus.

The company, which has 1,400 pubs and employs around 14,000, said as well as taking actions to reduce the group’s overall cost base it also took “the precautionary measure” of securing a waiver of a breach that might arise under the 30-day suspension of business and operations provision in the terms of the group’s secured funding platform.

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It said: “We continue to take an extremely prudent approach in our management of the business during this period of unprecedented uncertainty, the timescale of which remains unclear pending further guidance from the UK Government as to how, and when, the current state of much reduced social activity can be relaxed and pubs allowed to re-open.”

The waiver has been granted until May 29 with an automatic extension to June 15 in certain circumstances.

The group, which owns McEwan’s and Wychwood’s Hobgoblin, and includes is also reviewing whether there is a need to consult with bondholders about further possible covenant waivers under the secured funding platform in light of the impact of the UK Government’s measures on the business.

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