Healthcare Locums on the hunt for funds to meet covenants

 
David Hellier
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HEALTHCARE Locums, the troubled staffing provider for the health and social care sectors, yesterday warned that poor trading conditions meant it might not meet its banking covenants in March and June.

The group, led by chief executive Stephen Burke, has approached its two largest shareholders, Tosca Fund and Ares Capital, which between them own around 72 per cent of the equity, with a view to them providing some additional funding, as part of a strategy to safeguard the business.

Healthcare said it could not guarantee the success of these talks until it became clear how much was needed and on what terms the shareholders wished to provide the additional capital.

The company said its trading had been affected in the UK by the implementation of a new IT system and a delay in the NHS moving towards a higher volume model. In Australia the group has been hit by a weakness in demand in the private and public sector.

Shares in Healthcare Locums, which is being sued by its former executive chairman Kate Bleasdale, fell 71.5 per cent to 0.70p yesterday.