Freedom Meals – recapitalisation plan revealed
Australia-based Freedom Meals Group has introduced a recapitalisation of as much as AUD265m (US$203.3m) as a part of its turnaround technique.
It has additionally introduced Michael Perich, who has been interim CEO on the firm since August, has been given the job on a everlasting foundation, efficient instantly.
Freedom Meals, which has had a troubled 18 months amid scrutiny over its accounting, government departures and asset disposals, stated the recapitalisation will permit it to “considerably repay its financial institution debt, offering a versatile capital construction that higher facilitates the continued monetary and operational turnaround of the corporate”.
The capital-raising includes a suggestion of unlisted, subordinated secured convertible notes to eligible wholesale traders of as much as AUD130m and an AUD200m dedication to subscribe for notes secured from its majority shareholder, Arrovest, the funding car of the Perich household – a money injection agreed in precept again in January.
Banks NAB and HSBC will present a brand new two-year, AUD36m facility to the corporate, together with a two-year time period debt facility for as much as AUD50m, relying on the entire observe proceeds raised.
The completion of the recapitalisation is focused for Could,
Freedom Meals chair Genevieve Gregor stated “This recapitalisation is a crucial step within the operational and monetary turnaround of Freedom Meals Group.”
She added: “Operationally, we’ve got introduced the sale of sure non-core belongings and adopted a simplified enterprise technique to make sure we’re centered on the manufacturers and merchandise with the best potential in our dairy and nutritionals and plant-based drinks companies.
“Our first-half monetary outcomes, launched final month, reveal that we’re making good early progress on the turnaround.”
On the appointment of latest everlasting CEO Perich, Gregor stated: “Since taking up the function of interim CEO at a difficult time, Michael has supplied much-needed stability and management to the corporate and its individuals. He has been on the forefront of the operational and monetary enhancements throughout the enterprise and the board is delighted he’ll tackle the function on a everlasting foundation to proceed to drive the turnaround now nicely underway.”
Earlier this month, Freedom Meals stated its turnaround plan is “starting to realize traction” after seeing gross sales rise and losses decline within the first half of its monetary yr.
The corporate behind Australia’s Personal milk and Important Power protein powders booked a ten% enhance in income to AUD317.3m for the six months to the tip of December.
In December, Freedom Meals agreed to promote its cereal and snacks enterprise to Australian snacks maker The Arnott’s Group.
The outcomes from Freedom Meals’ prior fiscal yr have been restated after a Deloitte investigation into accounting on the firm. The assessment, which additionally led to Freedom Meals’ 2018 and 2019 monetary accounts being restated, adopted information final June the corporate was probing the potential for fraudulent exercise within the wake of write-downs, fees which adopted the departure of senior executives.
Buying and selling within the listed firm’s shares has been on maintain since final June however resumed buying and selling on the Australian Securities Change (ASX) on Monday (22 March), In early commerce, the diversified meals firm’s shares have been down 94% to AUD0.18 however that they had recovered by the tip of Tuesday to AUD0.58.