Nando’s losses more than doubled to £ 240million

Nando’s has called 2020 the “most difficult year” in its 34-year history, as the chicken chain revealed that annual pre-tax losses have more than doubled to £ 240million.

In accounts seen by the Financial Times and due for publication on Companies House this week, the chicken-focused restaurant group said it was forced to raise £ 100million in equity from its company South African mother in September of last year while negotiating since its financial year ended in February “remains mixed”.

“Fiscal year 2021 has been the most difficult in Nando’s history due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In this difficult context. . . I am particularly pleased that we were able to avoid any layoffs in our UK restaurants and avoid any permanent closures, ”said Rob Papps, Managing Director of Nando, in a statement.

Revenue through February 2021 fell 39% to £ 665million due to volatile Covid-19 restrictions and lockdowns in its 23 markets. The company reported a pre-tax loss of £ 241.8million from a loss of £ 99.4million in 2020, and said net liability increased from £ 11.9million to £ 139.1 million due to the withdrawal of its banking facilities and interest on its debt.

Nando’s is one of the few casual dining chains in the UK to have emerged from the pandemic without having to go through an administrative or restructuring process or close a significant number of outlets.

The group closed underperforming sites in Canada and Australia, resulting in a reduction in its total number of restaurants from 958 to 913. Its number of employees fell from 22,412 to 20,457, but it said that he was actively recruiting since the restrictions were relaxed.

Nando’s said the group’s strategy remained to expand internationally and renovate its existing sites. In a continuity statement, the company said it was aiming for a “slow return” to pre-Covid trading by February 2022.

The restaurant chain, known for its grilled peri-peri chicken, was founded in South Africa in 1987. Papps took over as managing director in May 2019 after 20 years with the company.

In the accounts, Nando’s also highlighted its environmental efforts, claiming that the group is aiming for carbon neutrality this month and that it is the first European catering group to adhere to a scientific goal that will lead it to reduce its carbon emissions. in absolute terms rather than buying carbon offsets.

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