WYG debt deal sees shareholders’ stake cut to 1%

Grant Prior 13 years ago
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Existing shareholders in WYG will have their stake diluted down to just 1.09% of the firm under a radical capital restructuring revealed today.

The consultant is planning a share placing to raise £30m and a conversion of the firm’s £51m of debts into equity owned by lenders.

Shareholders are expected to agree the deal at the annual general meeting because the alternative is forcing the firm out of business as banks call in their loans.

WYG said: “The Group could then face administration or other insolvency proceedings as the Board believes that alternative sources of debt or equity finance are unlikely to be available.”

The £30m raised will be used to keep and attract staff in a bid to grow the business.

The statement said: “The Group’s financial position has made it challenging to motivate, retain and recruit the highly skilled personnel who form the core assets of any consultancy business.

“The Board also recognises that the Group must have access to sufficient capital to take advantage of the opportunities that now exist to grow in the Group’s chosen markets and to attract and retain talented employees.”

A new share scheme will be set up to incentivise staff.

Chairman Mike McTighe said: “Much has been achieved over the past two years to recreate a stable operational platform.

“Today’s proposals will provide WYG with significant positive cash balances, a strengthened balance sheet and the ability to incentivise its employees, so creating a significantly stronger position from which to take advantage of the growth opportunities that now exist for the Group.

“The Board is grateful for the support of all of its stakeholders over the past two years, and in particular for the support of its Lenders, which has enabled the Group to reach this significant milestone in the Group’s development.”

WYG’s share price fell 70% in early trading to a year-low of 3p.

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