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Troubled convenience store chain McColl’s is to request a suspension in trading of its shares after announcing it will fail to publish its annual accounts by the stock market deadline.

It confirmed this morning it “will not be in a position” to publish its annual report for the year ended 28 November 2021 by the end of May 2022 due to the need a failure to conclude rescue talks with lenders and key partner Morrisons.

McColl’s said it needs to reach agreement on a potential financing solution for the business in order to finalise its audited financial statements.

“As these discussions remain ongoing, the board has concluded there is now insufficient time in order to meet the current deadline for filing these results under the listing rules,” it stated.

Therefore, the company is expecting to request that the listing of its ordinary shares be temporarily suspended with effect from 7:30am on 1 June.

Last week McColl’s issued a profits warning after slower than expected Easter trading.

It said the recovery in trading performance had continued during the first half of March, but the business saw “softer” trading through the Easter period, impacted by reduced consumer spending and continued supply chain disruption across the industry.

This weaker than expected Easter performance and the impact of cost inflation pressures, means it now expects adjusted EBITDA for the current financial year to be no higher than the level achieved in 2021 of £20m.

Meanwhile, it said the potential financing solution it is negotiating with its “key commercial partner and lenders” is “increasingly likely to result in little or no value being attributed to the group’s shares”.

McColl’s shares have lost another 25% this morning to 0.67p having reached almost 5p in late April.

The shares are 98% down year-on-year.

Morning update

Premium drinks mixer group FeverTree has announced that chairman Bill Ronald will retire from his role and to step down from the board at its AGM in May 2023.

Ronald was appointed as chairman in June 2013 ahead of the company’s IPO in November 2014.

The nomination committee, led by senior independent director Coline McConville, will initiate a process to identify and appoint his successor.

Tim Warrillow, CEO and co-founder, commented: “On behalf of the company, I would like to thank Bill for his commitment and dedication to Fever-Tree over the past nine years in which time he has made a real and lasting contribution to our success. I have always greatly appreciated his passion for the business and his unwavering good nature and whilst I look forward to 12 more months of working closely together, he will be much missed.”

Ronald added: “It has been a privilege to serve as chairman of Fever-Tree during a truly transformative time for the brand. There is a fantastic team in place across the globe, and I have no doubt it has a hugely exciting future ahead of it.”

On the markets this morning, the FTSE 100 is down 0.2% to 7,533.6pts.

Early risers include Marks & Spencer, up 3.2% to 142.2p, Nichols, up 3% to 1,390.6p and Sainsbury’s, up 2.9% to 240.1p.

Fallers so far today include Tate & Lyle, down 11.5% to 802.1p, Greencore, down 2.7% to 111.5p and Glanbia, down 2.2% to €11.25.

This week in the City

After a flurry of market news over the past two weeks the short first week of May looks a little quieter.

Tomorrow brings the latest Nielsen monthly grocery market share figures.

Thursday brings AGMs at Ocado and Unilever, the first of which could see a shareholder revolt over executive pay awards.

The tail-end of quarterly earnings season sees interim earnings from Starbucks later today.

Thursday brings Q1 earnings releases from AB InBev and Kellogg’s on Thursday, while Hain Celestial posts Q3 results and Weetabix owner Post Holdings will release its interim results.