Tuesday 25 July 2017

Dividends take a holiday at Thomas Cook after shares slump

THOMAS Cook heaped more pain on shareholders today after it revealed it will not pay a dividend until it has sorted its battered finances.

The holiday firm has seen its share price slump 80pc in six months after three profit warnings in a year and the departure of its chief executive.



It recently announced a series of measures to turn around its UK business, including plans for the closure of 24 of its 800 retail stores and a reduction in its airline fleet from 41 aircraft to six in order to meet capacity.



Consultations with staff are under way and Thomas Cook said today it expected to give more details about its plans with full-year results on November 24.



However, it warned it will not make any dividend payments whilst it attempts to rebuild its balance sheet, which shows debts of around £900 million.



It is battling weak sales due to poor consumer confidence and disruption caused by the unrest in North Africa, adding that while trading steadied in July and August, September was "challenging".



The company said: "Our objective is to see a substantial reduction in net debt over the next two to three years."

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