Published on Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Flight Centre closes hundreds more stores in Australia

Flight Centre will permanently close more than 400 Australian stores from the end of July as it faces the 'most challenging period' in its history.

According to the Australian Financial Review, it may be as many as 800 stores in total.

The travel group announced a $700 million capital raise from institutional investors and existing shareholders to shore up its finances, and also secured $200 million in debt from lenders.

Transaction volumes are currently only about a fifth of normal levels, and has already temporarily stood down about 6,000 workers globally.

"It is without question the most challenging period we have encountered in over 30 years in business and it is inevitable that some businesses across our industry will fail," Flight Centre MD Graham Turner said.

"With this funding in place and additional liquidity, we are in a much stronger position and are well placed to weather a prolonged downturn."

Flight Centre said it is trying to renegotiate rent payments on stores and could sell its Melbourne head office building.

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