Snoozebox hits the alarm with £10m cash call

 
Michael Bow
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SNOOZEBOX, the portable hotels provider, yesterday said it was set to raise £10.1m from investors and directors in an emergency bid to save itself from bankruptcy.

The business, which has a contract to provide portable accommodation for next month’s G8 summit in Northern Ireland, will use the cash as working capital to help fulfil contracts this year and next, it said.

The new shares, placed with existing investors at 24p, will be at a four per cent discount to the stock’s last closing price on Wednesday evening. They will represent nearly 40 per cent of the group’s market capitalisation after the placing is complete.

Executive chairman David Morrison said: “We are grateful to our institutional shareholders for their continued support for the business.”

Any hitch in the fundraising plan, which will be put to shareholders at its annual meeting, is likely to put the company out of business, the group’s board warned yesterday.

The junior stock market listed firm, which trades under the ticker ZZZ, has seen its share price slide more than 50 per cent over the past six months.

It parted company with its founder and former chief executive Robert Breare last month after a £4.4m loss.

The group was floated by Breare, a former chairman of fashion house Ted Baker, in May 2012 for £20.5m.

The directors of the company will stump up £228,000 of their own cash to contribute to yesterday’s share raising, which will be worth 1.4 per cent of the new market cap once the shares are placed.

ADVISERS SNOOZEBOX

CHARLES LEIGH- PEMBERTON
PANMURE GORDON

Snoozebox recruited corporate and institutional broker Panmure Gordon for the share placing announced yesterday. Leading the transaction from the corporate broking team is director Charles Leigh-Pemberton, pictured, who joined Panmure in March 2011 after five years at RLM Finsbury. He previously worked briefly as a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers and served as a captain of the Grenadier Guards for six years. In 2012 he worked on raising £6.9m through a placing by technology outsourcing firm Regenersis. Heading the corporate finance team is director Fred Walsh. He joined the broker in June 2011 from Arden Partners, where he held the same position. Most of his career has been in corporate finance, and he has previously worked at Landsbanki and ABN AMRO. He also worked in corporate brokerage at Credit Suisse First Boston. This year in March he led a £40m equity raise by the drug company e-Therapeutic. Both directors worked on the Snoozebox placing last November, which raised £8.4m, and on a £6m fundraiser by the software solutions firm NetDimensions earlier this month. They also worked together last year brokering the successful IPO of software company WANdisco.

Helena Ball