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LJUBLJANA (Slovenia), August 9 (SeeNews) – Slovenian retailer Mercator [LJE:MELR] has put up for sale 13 shopping centres across Southeast Europe (SEE) as part of its strategy to slash debt, Slovenian media reported on Friday.
Mercator intends to sell its Koper II shopping centre in Slovenia, four properties in Croatia, six in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and two in Serbia, Slovenian daily Dnevnik reported.
The goal is to reduce debt to roughly four times the annual earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), which stood at 107.5 million euro last year, Dnevnik quoted the CEO of Mercator, Tomislav Cizmic, as saying.
All properties are being sold under a sale-leaseback plan, which will allow the company to keep operating them as a tenant, Dnevnik said.
The company's net financial debt as at March 31 amounted to 666.8 million euro ($746.5 million) without the effect of IFRS 16, down 18.2% compared to end-March 2018.
In February, Mercator said it has completed the sale of 10 shopping centres in Slovenia to Austria’s Supernova group for 116.6 million euro. Under the sale and purchase agreement announced in October, Mercator is taking on a long-term lease the parts of the centres in which it is conducting its core activity.
($ = 0.893253 euro)