In an ominous and unexpected trading statement this morning, Foxtons says it will take “all necessary steps” to remain in business.
It says that while the impact of the Coronavirus outbreak is still too early to evaluate there is now a “significantly weakened economic outlook” for the country as a whole including London, where most of the iconic agency’s activities are based.
It says it has now “fully drawn down” its £5m revolving credit facility giving it a substantial £21m cash balance but it then warns that the board is “evaluating a number of actions to preserve cash and will take all necessary steps to balance these measures with preserving the long term capacity of the business.”
Here is this morning’s statement in full: “Foxtons Group plc, London's leading estate agency today issues an update on the impact of the COVID-19 virus on the company.
"The business performance in the first 11 weeks of the financial year has been in line with the Board's expectations and consistent with the update given at the full year results at the end February 2020. However, the company notes the necessary defensive measures taken by the government affecting London and the UK along with the significantly weakened economic outlook.
"It is too early to predict what the impact of Covid-19 will be on Foxtons' full year results. However, we do anticipate an inevitable material disruption to trading in the coming months.
"Foxtons is in a strong position as a market leader and continues to manage a strong balance sheet. The group has fully drawn down its £5m revolving credit facility, resulting in a current available cash balance of £21m. The board is currently evaluating a number of actions to preserve cash and will take all necessary steps to balance these measures with preserving the long term capacity of the business."