Gannett Co., Inc. announced that from the beginning of the fourth quarter through the end of this week, the Company will have repaid approximately $647 million of its 11.5% term loan, reducing the outstanding balance to $1.082 billion. The sources of funds for the $647 million of repayment are: $497 million of proceeds from the Company’s issuance of 6% senior secured convertible notes due 2027; Approximately $135 million of real estate and other non-core asset sales; and Approximately $15 million of excess cash sweeps. “We are pleased to be closing the year having made significant progress to improve our capital structure. The actions we have taken to date have lowered our interest payments by $45 million annually. Our asset sales have accelerated our debt repayment expectations and have increased our confidence in our ability to refinance the remaining term loan during the first half of 2021,” said Michael Reed, Gannett Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Additionally, revenue trends have continued to improve, which we expect will drive strong fourth quarter results and set us up to start the year with strong momentum. Our real estate sales pipeline and amortization payments are expected to further reduce debt by approximately $100 million by early 2021.”
Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) today announced the appointment of Neil Fiske as president and chief executive officer of Gap brand. Fiske will begin his new role on June 20, 2018, and will serve on the company’s senior leadership team, reporting to Art Peck, president and chief executive officer of Gap Inc.
“Neil brings significant retail and apparel experience to Gap Inc. and a track record of transforming and repositioning brands,” said Peck. “He is an experienced leader who deeply understands the mechanics of this business, the value of an omnichannel strategy, and the need to build a progressive and relevant brand. I believe Neil is the right leader to strengthen Gap brand.”
“Gap is a truly iconic brand that is loved by its customers across the globe, and I am excited about the significant opportunity ahead for us,” said Fiske. “The brand has made some important progress and I look forward to working with the team to drive improved performance, operational excellence, great merchandising, and distinctive and powerful marketing.”
Fiske has 20 years of brand building and turnaround experience in specialty retailing. Most recently, he served as chief executive officer at Billabong International, where he restored the flagship Billabong brand to a position of market leadership and multi-year share growth. Prior to that, Fiske spent five years as president and chief executive officer at Eddie Bauer, repositioning the company to focus on its heritage as America’s original outdoor outfitter. Fiske was also chief executive officer at Bath and Body Works, where he led a complete brand transformation, reversing a multi-year trend of negative comp store sales. Fiske began his career at Boston Consulting Group, focused on consumer goods and retail. He graduated from Harvard Business School with a Masters of Business Administration and received a B.A. in Political Economy from Williams College.