Sphera Group Says Has Enough Liquidity to Recover after Crisis

Sphera Franchise Group’s consolidated restaurant sales have dropped by approximately 33% on year during the March 1-22 period and by approximately 75% on year during the March 16-22 period, as a result of the gradual closing of its restaurants.

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Imaginea articolului Sphera Group Says Has Enough Liquidity to Recover after Crisis

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Sphera’s management considers that it has sufficient liquidity to ensure the group’s solvency in the following months and to finance the gradual resuming of the business as market conditions improve.

Sphera Group, which manages restaurants under the KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell brands, has closed 53 restaurants in Romania and has kept 29 KFC stores operating only through their Drive-Thru and Delivery channels. As many as 15 out of the 22 Pizza Hut Delivery stores are operational, the group said in a statement Tuesday.

In Italy, Sphera closed all 16 KFC restaurants starting March 12, and in Moldova it closed both KFC restaurants but continues to provide delivery services from one store.

The company has all restaurant staff in technical unemployment, which will be fully supported by the Romanian Government up to a level of 75% of the average national salary, effective March 23. For salaries that exceed the average national salary, the group will support the difference.

It said it has also reduced the working schedule of the non-critical headquarter staff from 5 to 4 working days a week effective March 23 and will place them under technical unemployment starting April 1.

Sphera is negotiating with all landlords to reduce rent costs and discussing with banks to increase available liquidity to the Group in case the current crisis extends for a longer period.

The Group has also frozen or delayed all new-store development projects except four (two in Romania, two in Italy) which are in an advanced stage of finalization.

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