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Basic-Fit raises €150m additional financing to weather COVID and drive expansion

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Europe’s largest fitness chain, Basic-Fit, has secured a €150m bridge facility, which it says will provide it with the financial flexibility to weather the impact of the pandemic and to "recommence its growth strategy".

The group, which currently operates 905 clubs across the continent, revealed in October 2020 that it plans to open a further 337 clubs by the end of 2022.

In a statement, Basic-Fit said that the pandemic had resulted in widespread closures across its European estate, but that it expects to resume its expansion programme once lockdown restrictions are lifted.

"As a result of the government measures, following the second COVID-19 wave, we had to start closing clubs again at the end of September,"

"By mid-December, all our clubs in the Netherlands, Belgium and France were closed.

"We ended 2020 with a total network of 905 clubs (up 121 clubs year on year) of which 851 clubs are still closed, and 54 clubs (Spain and Luxembourg) remain open.

"We ended 2020 with 2.0 million members (2.2 million year-end 2019).

"With the continued uncertainty regarding the timing of reopening of our clubs in the countries where these are currently closed, the additional facility is expected to ensure ample liquidity for Basic-Fit during this pandemic and to keep us well positioned post-COVID-19 to resume our growth path.

"With our clubs being closed in our largest countries, we continue to manage our cash outflow by keeping capital expenditure at a minimum and operating with a reduced cost base."

ABN AMRO and Rabobank acted as Bookrunning Mandate Lead Arrangers on the bridge facility. Basic-Fit anticipates to refinance the committed bridge facility "with debt, equity or equity-linked instruments or a combination thereof".

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Europe’s largest fitness chain, Basic-Fit, has secured a €150m bridge facility, which it says will provide it with the financial flexibility to weather the impact of the pandemic and to 'recommence its growth strategy'.
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