House of Fraser has altered the ownership structure of one of the two companies facing a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) vote today (22 June).
Documents filed with Companies House on 18 June show HoF altered the ownership structure of House of Fraser Limited, one of the two subsidiaries within the wider group that are facing a CVA vote.
House of Fraser Limited had previously been the major shareholder in House of Fraser (Stores) Ltd, the other company facing a separate CVA vote.
HoF filed a cessation notice, stating that House of Fraser Limited had ceased to be a “person with significant control” of House of Fraser (Stores) Ltd.
In its place, House of Fraser (UK & Ireland) Acquisitions Limited was positioned as the new direct parent company of House of Fraser (Stores) Ltd.
Companies House says a person with “significant control” is deemed to own 75% or more of the shares or voting rights in the company.
Rumours suggest that House of Fraser Limited, the holder of 14 of the retailer’s stores, is likely to lose the vote on its CVA. However, the CVA for House of Fraser (Stores), which controls the group’s remaining 45 stores, is expected to pass.
One industry source says the changes indicate that House of Fraser may be preparing for one of the votes to fail.
Landlords are widely anticipated to vote against the CVA.
It was revealed earlier this week that HoF was offered a credit lifeline by two of its major lenders after an agreement was secured to extend credit facilities and loans to the end of 2020 – as long as its CVA plans are approved.
It is understood that both HSBC and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China have agreed to extend a £125m loan and also a £100m revolving credit facility to the retailer until the fourth quarter of 2020.
The HoF CVA is being administed by KPMG. Drapers has contacted HoF and KPMG for comment.