Shares in Jessops have today fallen nearly 65% following news that shareholders are unlikely to see any return amid the photographic store’s ongoing debt restructuring programme.

Jessops’ shares have dropped to just over 2 pence each from last night’s value of more than 6p, as the chain continues talks with its lenders. At one stage this morning they fell as low as 1.5p.

Earlier today Britain’s biggest high street photographic retailer reported that its like-for-like sales fell 4.5% in the six months to 31 March.

Its loss before tax and non-recurring items more than doubled, to £5.9m (2008: 2.9m).

In a statement, executive chairman David Adams said: ‘In January we said that we were in discussions with our advisers and HSBC Bank and that it was highly likely that this exercise would involve a fundamental restructuring of debt. These discussions continue.’

He added: ‘Regrettably, however, against the backdrop of the challenging retail environment and the historic level of debt, the board believes that it is unlikely that any value will be attributed to shareholders. Nevertheless, we are still working with HSBC towards a solvent solution for the business.’

Jessops’ debts amount to around £60m.


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