Queuing and ticketing technology provider Accesso Technology (ACSO:AIM) has pulled multiple funding levers to bolster its balance sheet as the Covid-19 pandemic looks set to wipe out peak summer trading for its theme park customers.

In an after hours announcement on Thursday, and confirmed today, Accesso has raised £32.9m via a placing and subscription at 290p per share. That equates to 41% new shares at a 13% discount to yesterday’s close of 335p.

The company did not stop there. It is also running a proposed open offer which, if taken up in full, will raise extra an £6.2m. Accesso has also secured an amendment and waiver to certain financial covenants, raised £8m of new debt facilities while slashing monthly operating costs by 40%.

DAYS OUT WIPE OUT

As a provider of queuing and ticketing technology solutions to theme parks, water parks, ski resorts, cultural attractions and sporting events, Accesso’s business has been decimated by the global lockdown, with attractions around the world forced to close.

While revenue fell just 12% in the first quarter to 31 March 2020, this was just the tip of the coronavirus iceberg. Sales plunged 80% in April and the company estimated that revenue would be something in the region of 66% to 74% down for 2020 overall.

That implied $39.8m to $30.5m in 2020, based on Accesso’s scenario modelling. While the company said it had previously sufficient liquidity to last until autumn, it would have likely breached debt covenants by September 2020, and possibly as early as the end of June, without extra cash.

REVERBERATIONS INTO 2021

‘With it now becoming clear that the pandemic will impact its key summer months in North America and Europe, it is unsurprising to see Accesso exhaust all its cash conservation options to strengthen its balance sheet and secure its future into next year,’ said Megabuyte analyst Rob Warensjo.

The question now is what toll the pandemic will take on 2021, with the rate of footfall recovery, and Acccesso’s revenues, dependent on the ability to observe social distancing measures in typically crowded amusement attractions and progress on finding a vaccine longer-term.

The company gave up on attempts to sell itself in January after sniffs of interest were pitched way below valuations that the board could recommend.

Accesso’s share price on Friday was surprisingly unmoved, staying flat at 335p.

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Issue Date: 22 May 2020