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Eurostar secures £250m financial support package

Eurostar has announced a £250m refinancing agreement with its shareholders and banks in order to help it manage the impact of Covid-19.

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Eurostar has announced a £250m refinancing agreement with its shareholders and banks in order to help it manage the impact of Covid-19.

 

The company, which operates train services between the UK and the European continent, says it has experienced a more severe decline in demand than “any other European train operator or competitor airline” due to the pandemic.

 

The package - which has been guaranteed by its shareholders - compromises of £50m worth of shareholder equity, £150m shareholder guaranteed loans and £50m of restructured existing loan facilities.

 

Jacques Damas, chief executive of Eurostar, said: “The refinancing agreement is the key factor enabling us to increase our services as the situation with the pandemic starts to improve. Eurostar will continue to work closely with governments to move towards a safe easing of travel restrictions and streamlining of border processes to allow passengers to travel safely and seamlessly. Their co-ordinated actions and decisions are crucial to the restoring of demand and the financial recovery of our business.”

 

Going forward, the firm - which is backed by France and Belgium’s state-run railway group’s SNCF and SNCB, as well as Patina Rail LLP and investment banking business Federated Hermes - will focus on restoring demand for travel on Eurostar’s core routes between London and Paris and Brussels and Amsterdam. In addition to this, it is looking to maintain rigorous cost control to ensure the repayment of loans.

 

As part of this work, Eurostar will increase the number of trains on its London to Paris route to two daily return services from 27 May, and three per day from the end of June. It plans to gradually increase the frequency over the summer period as travel restrictions are eased.

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