Woolies to service debt with sale of its flagship property in Australia
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JOHANNESBURG - WOOLWORTHS, the South African retail giant, said on Friday that proceeds from the sale of its flagship Elizabeth Street property in Sydney, Australia, would be applied towards the repayment of debt in Australia.
Woolies, which owns the David Jones and Country Road brands in Australia, told shareholders that the transaction had been completed. In December, Woolies announced the sale of the Elizabeth Street property to Australian investment and fund management company Charter Hall, for a maximum of A$510 million (about R5.9 billion).
Woolies also entered into a lease agreement with Charter Hall, allowing David Jones to remain in the building as a tenant through a lease term of 20 years, with options to renew the lease.
Woolies has previously said the Elizabeth Street sale was expected to further strengthen the group’s balance sheet and ensure a more sustainable capital structure of our Australian entities.
Woolies, which has been grappling with debt after acquiring the David Jones brand in 2014 embarked on a debt reduction strategy focused on the sale of certain Australian properties.
Last year, Woolies sold Bourke Street Menswear at 299 Bourke Street Mall sold to Newmark Capital.