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Marshalls withdraws guidance, scraps dividend due to Covid-19

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Friday 27 Mar 2020

LONDON (ShareCast) - (Sharecast News) - Landscape products specialist Marshalls withdraw its financial guidance on Friday and suspended its dividend due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The company said it is continuing to distribute products where there is demand, but where demand has fallen, it is managing the manufacturing facilities "carefully" and beginning a process of temporary suspension of operations.

"These actions will protect cash flow generation and contain costs," it said, adding that non-essential capital expenditure has been deferred.

Marshalls said it has a "strong" balance sheet, supported by a flexible capital structure and significant headroom against bank facilities. Nevertheless, it has decided that in light of the current circumstance and to preserve its financial position, it is appropriate to cancel the 2019 final dividend of 9.65p and the previously-announced supplementary dividend of 4p.

"As a consequence of the current levels of uncertainty, which are unprecedented, it is not possible at this time for the group to provide an accurate assessment of trading for the current year and accordingly all previous market guidance is now being withdrawn.

"We will provide a further update when there is greater clarity about the impact of Covid-19."

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