Interserve defers covenants test date

Interserve has managed to defer the test date for compliance with loan covenants and secure a short-term financing package as discussions with lenders continue.

The troubled support services firm now has until the end of March to meet lenders’ demands for covenants, following recent warnings that it might struggle to meet the expected net debt to EBITDA test for the current financial year.

Interserve also agreed to close out its cross-currency swaps in exchange for a £180m facility.

Debbie White, Interserve’s chief executive, said: “Securing these agreements puts Interserve on a firmer footing. Whilst there is still much to do, Interserve has significant opportunities based upon a strong client base and our dedicated employees. There is considerable potential for business improvement across the group.”

The firm expects that its move to act on cross-currency swaps could increase net debt by £10m and generate proceeds to repay lenders.

White added: “These short-term committed borrowing facilities, together with the ongoing work to clearly define the strategy and commercial structure for the business going forward, will bring further stability and clarity for our clients, our people and our shareholders.”

Interserve has recently appointed a director of transformation, IT and people, nearly two weeks after announcing that Bruce Melizan, who was in charge of the firm’s support services business, stepped down from the board as part of the firm’s ‘Fit for Growth’ strategy.