Swindon’s Oak Furnitureland future more rosy thanks to £25 million lending facility

Oak Furnitureland

Swindon-based Oak Furnitureland, which was sold through a pre-pack administration in June to Davidson Kempner Capital Management as part of a fast-track insolvency process handled by accountants Deloitte, has now been supported with a £25 million asset-backed lending facility by specialist lender BREAL Zeta.

The funding backs the management’s business plan to secure the retailer’s future and save 1,500 jobs.

The asset-based lending facility is for an initial term of 18 months, comprised a £20 million inventory line and £5 million cash flow loan. The new facility has enabled the business to retain all of its staff, open its showrooms in line with government guidelines – and drive forward on a stronger financial footing.

Alex Fisher, CEO at Oak Furnitureland Group Limited, said: “With the new facility from BREAL Zeta, the company has a strong liquidity position and is trading positively, buoyed by a strong post-Covid bounce. The combination of a strong brand, synonymous with quality, pent up consumer demand and a notable switch to investment in the home has brought sales to above forecasted levels.”

He added: “Our like-for-like growth in our core market remains strong and we continue to increase sales and market share in the upholstery category.”

Russell Gilling, Managing Director, BREAL Zeta said: “Oak Furnitureland is an excellent business with a highly experienced management team, strong brand, loyal customer base and an omni-channel retail presence. We were delighted to work with the management team, Deloitte, the investment team and their advisers to make this deal a reality. We are proud at the part we have played in securing this deal during Covid conditions, working from home offices and dining rooms to deliver the significant level of funding that was required in time for the showrooms to open and critically, safeguarding vital jobs. We are pleased to play our part in ensuring that Oak Furnitureland can go forward with the strong foundation for future growth that the business strongly deserves.”