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Fitness First agrees debt deal

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Health club operator Fitness First has signed a three-month waiver agreement with its key creditors to allow a comprehensive debt restructuring.

The deal will result in most of the company's debt being wiped out and two key creditors - Oaktree and Marathon - gaining more control of the business.

In a statement, Fitness First said: "During this three month extension period, Oaktree and Marathon, the two largest lenders, have agreed to work closely with Fitness First and its management to ensure that the company has the necessary working capital to continue to operate its facilities as normal and fulfil its obligations to its employees, suppliers and other trade counterparties.

"For the longer term, Oaktree and Marathon are in the process of finalising the injection of additional funds into Fitness First that will secure its long term future."

Chris Stone, CEO of Fitness First said: "It is no secret that Fitness First has been struggling under an unsustainable level of debt, and I am delighted that our lenders have given us the space we need to restructure the company and secure its long-term future.

"Fitness First is a strong brand that offers excellent service to its members in a number of countries, and I am looking forward to working closely with all our stakeholders to ensure that appropriate finance is in place to allow us to prosper well into the future."

Oren Peleg, managing director of Oaktree added: "Chris and his team have done a great job under difficult circumstances stabilising the company as it has struggled with an unsustainable debt structure.

"We are happy to work with Fitness First to ensure it has the necessary working capital in place to continue to operate normally until we secure the planned sensible long-term capital structure that will be aligned with the group's future strategy."

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Health club operator Fitness First has signed a three-month waiver agreement with its key creditors to allow a comprehensive debt restructuring.
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