Travel giant Tui has confirmed it is considering a large capital raise to shore up its balance sheet, though it said it would be ‘significantly lower’ than the £910million to £1.35billion suggested in media reports.
It would be the third large financing package for the firm after it received £1.1billion in state aid from the German government in August and a £1.6billion bridging loan in April.
The company has seen its revenues plummet this year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic causing a massive downturn in the tourism and travel industry.
Travel bans, quarantine restrictions and the growing popularity of staycations caused its summer bookings to fall by 83 per cent, and it has cut 8,000 jobs to help save hundreds of millions in costs.
Tui said the capital raise is ‘among many measures’ it is contemplating and that it had not made a final decision on the timing or the size of the package.
In a statement, the airline owner wrote: ‘In view of the still very volatile market environment resulting from the Covid-19 crisis, it continues evaluating various measures to achieve an optimal balance sheet structure and maturity profile.’
The new announcement comes as the firm revealed it had cancelled all trips to Turkey for today and tomorrow following the UK government’s addition of the country to its quarantine red list.
Turkey’s official coronavirus rate is 23 per 1,000, which is slightly above the UK government’s threshold of 20 per 1,000. However, a document leaked by an opposition MP in the Turkish parliament suggests the correct figure could be twenty times higher.
The Foreign Office has advised against all but essential journeys to Turkey and informed travellers who are returning to the UK from the country after 4am tomorrow that they must self-isolate for two weeks after they arrive back.
Poland was also put on the list, meaning that people living in England can now only travel to seven European countries without restrictions: Germany, Italy, Sweden, the Greek mainland, Liechtenstein, San Marino and Gibraltar.
Tui stressed that customers impacted by the decision will receive a refund, while those still on holiday in the country ‘can continue to enjoy their holidays as planned.’
Yesterday, its chief executive Fritz Joussen stated that the company was considering selling some of its 400 hotels or its UK-based Marella cruise line in order to shore up its balance sheet, according to the Financial Times.
The tour operator also said that it would retire one of its Marella vessels, leaving it with four ships and resulting in the cancellation of multiple cruises next year.
Last week, it made further cuts to winter capacity due to changing restrictions. It said that holiday prices slipped by 19 per cent, while it has also seen winter sales drop 59 per cent against the same period last year.
Shares in Tui Group were down 2 per cent to 285.4p by the end of trading.