Lloyds threatens Telegraph’s receivership

Lloyds Banking Group, a lender, has threatened receivership of the owner of Telegraph Media Group due to a debt that the Barclay-controlled parent company owes.

According to two sources with knowledge of this situation, AlixPartners is preparing to act as receivers for Press Acquisitions which controls the Telegraph newspaper, should Lloyds decide to take legal action against the operating company because they have not paid off a debt that dates back decades.

Uncertainty surrounds the amount of money owed to Lloyds by the group, but a person involved in the discussions said it was “hundreds and millions of pounds”. According to this person, a repayment agreement could be reached, but Lloyds’ patience with the debt is running out.

Lloyds acquired Bank of Scotland after its acquisition. The debt is a result of loans that Bank of Scotland made during the financial crisis. The bank has secured charges on the assets of the company that received the Bank of Scotland loan.

A person who was close to the negotiation said: “This has nothing to do with the performance of The Telegraph. It’s about historical finance.” It is a long-standing dispute between the family of the deceased and LBG regarding a legacy HBOS mortgage. The banker was patient for many years, but finally got tired.”

Press Acquisitions, owned by May Corporation – a Jersey-based entity controlled by Barclay’s family – is a Press Acquisitions. Sir Frederick Barclay and his late brother Sir David Barclay bought the newspaper in 2004 and own the online retailer Very Group.

According to a spokesperson for the Barclays, “the loans in question relate to the family’s ownership structure over its media assets.” The loans do not affect the financial or operational stability of Telegraph Media Group.”

He added, “speculations about the company entering administration are unfounded and irresponsible”.

He stated that the companies “continued to trade strongly”, were run by independent managers, and had minimal debt with strong liquidity. They are not liable for holding company liabilities and continue to run as usual.

Lloyds has declined to comment. AlixPartners has declined to comment.