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Rank Group to reopen Mecca bingo clubs on Saturday, July 4

The firm is still burning cash but expects to be cash positive when Grosvenor casinos reopen

Rank Group - Rank Group to reopen Mecca bingo clubs on July 4

Rank Group PLC (LON:RNK) has announced it will start reopening its Mecca bingo clubs from Saturday, July 4 in accordance with UK government regulation.

The FTSE 250-listed group said it will resume operations in 35 venues in England, then reopen another 30 in a phased manner including those in Wales and Scotland if permitted by the authorities.

READ: Rank Group says cash burn to be £10mln per month during coronavirus pandemic closures

The casinos operator said it “is likely to be necessary” to review the cost base for some, such as renegotiating rents, to allow them to reopen.

The firm said its venues allow for social distancing measures, with one-way systems and hand sanitiser available across the rooms.

Following reopening in Spain from June 10, Rank said revenues have been 40% lower than pre-pandemic levels, though revenues for its digital channel jumped by 17% in the quarter to June 30, 2020.

Underlying operating profit for the financial year is expected to be at the lower end of existing guidance, £48mln-58mln, the group added.

On July 1, 2020, the company said, its available cash was £140mln, while monthly cash burn continues to be around £10mln and will progressively reduce until the reopening of Grosvenor, which is when the firm expects to be cash positive.

"By the time of the August prelims, we expect news of growing revenue across the group allied with cost savings and a generally upbeat tone," analysts at Peel Hunt commented.

Shares rose 2% to 147.6p on Friday at the opening bell.

--Adds analyst comment, shares--

Quick facts: Rank Group

Price: 143.2 GBX

LSE:RNK
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £559.46 m
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