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Monday newspaper round-up: High streets, IWG, SSP

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Monday 28 Sep 2020

Monday newspaper round-up: High streets, IWG, SSP

(Sharecast News) - Business leaders have heaped pressure on the government to agree a last-minute Brexit trade deal after a survey showed that more than three-quarters backed an agreement with Brussels. The CBI warned ministers that only 4% of company bosses from a survey of 648 said they supported a no deal Brexit, while 77% said they wanted a deal. - Guardian

Britain's high streets could suffer a "knockout punch" following a second wave of Covid-19 as landlords and developers are forced to close down as much as 12m m2 of retail space and seek alternative tenants. With many shops already boarded up and many more under threat of closure, a survey of more than 400 property development bosses by the consultancy Altus Group found that 38% of executives had already been switching their retail properties to other uses, while a further 57% were considering doing the same. - Guardian

Shared offices provider IWG will this week test the mettle of landlords with the threat of putting a subsidiary that guarantees rent payments into bankruptcy protection. Jersey-based Regus plc, the name best associated with IWG, could be placed into insolvency within days, meaning it will not be on the hook for lease guarantees worth almost £800m. - Telegraph

SSP, the owner of Upper Crust and Ritazza coffee, used a ministerial directive obtained under freedom of information laws to gain an advantage in negotiations with railway station owners. The tactic will allow the FTSE 250 company, one of the world's biggest travel retailers, to slash rents owed to train operators that run most of the UK's stations, at a cost of millions of pounds to taxpayers. - Telegraph

The housing market is starting to run out of steam after months of robust growth over the summer, the most recent economic data suggests. For months the market defied the downturn in the economy thanks to a flood of enquiries from buyers seeking to relocate as soon as the lockdown was lifted. The chancellor's stamp duty cut for purchases under £500,000 also helped to fuel demand. - The Times

The administrator of Monarch Airlines has racked up fees of £8.2 million almost three years after the company collapsed. KPMG has been paid £5.5 million of that total since Monarch failed in October 2017 and has agreed to cap its fees at 80 per cent. The total fees are set to increase as the administration has been extended until April following an application to the high court last month as KPMG continues to deal with corporation tax matters. The figures were up to April this year. - The Times


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