Publications

- December 1, 2021: Vol. 15, Number 11

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The battle for rent: The post-pandemic UK regulations that are leaving landlords with nowhere to turn

by Katherine Campbell

On 29 September 2021, the High Court in the UK rejected one landlord’s challenge of Caffe Nero’s company voluntary arrangement (CVA) on the grounds of material irregularity and unfair prejudice. The landlord, backed by the EG Group — who was looking to acquire Caffe Nero — argued that the directors of the company and the CVA nominees had breached their respective duties in refusing to adjourn or postpone the electronic voting process in the CVA, after EG had submitted an 11th-hour offer for the company.

In this case, the voting deadline for the CVA was 11.59 pm on Monday, 30 November 2020. At 8.48 pm on Sunday, 29 November 2020, EG submitted a proposal which included acquiring 100 percent of the issued share capital of Nero Group Ltd (NGL), the company’s parent, and paying all rent arrears in full. Although the proposal was conditional upon the CVA being approved in a modified form, the proposal also requested that the CVA meeting be adjourned for at least 14 days t

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