Risk & Uncertainties
The Group may be adversely affected by changes in government regulations affecting alcohol pricing (including duty), sponsorship or advertising.
The Group and business units continue to engage with trade bodies to ensure any proposed changes to legislation and restrictions are appropriate within the industry.
The Group is actively involved in BBPA and also complies with all Portman Group guidance.
Within the context of supporting responsible drinking initiatives, the Group supports the work of its trade associations to present the industry’s case to government.
The Group has developed low, and zero, alcohol options for brands in order to address legislation and possible duty increases as well as appeal to those consumers looking for a healthier choice.
Our business, financial results and operations may be adversely affected by economic or geo-political instability and/or uncertainty, such as the conflict in Ukraine.
The Group’s performance is also impacted by potential recessions, inflation, exchange rates, taxation rates and social unrest.
The Board and management will continue to consider the impact on the Group’s businesses, monitor developments and engage with the UK, Irish and Scottish governments to help ensure a manageable outcome for our businesses.
Group businesses are active members in respected industry trade bodies including being a steering committee member of the all-party UK Parliamentary Beer Group.
On an ongoing basis, the Group seeks, where appropriate, to mitigate currency risk through hedging and structured financial contracts and take appropriate action to help mitigate the consequences of any decline in demand within its markets.
We have implemented action plans to protect the profitability and liquidity of the Group and mitigate a significant proportion of our cost base. We continue to review our cost base for additional savings.
We remain vigilant to changes in local jurisdictions and retain the flexibility to take appropriate mitigating action as necessary.
The Group recognises the significant environmental challenges the world faces due to a changing climate and the implications that this can have for our business and supply chains.
Physical climate impacts and related policy and/or market changes may disrupt our operations or impact demand for our products.
Failure to implement policies and meet required sustainability and ethical standards and social perceptions could significantly impact C&C’s reputation as well as potentially impact future growth.
The Group has established a strong governance model which includes an ESG Committee responsible for the delivery of our sustainability strategy. Ambitious targets are in place with regard to reducing the carbon footprint of our operations, our water intensity, reducing waste and also the use of single use plastics. Clonmel continues to be ISO 14001 accredited for an effective environmental management system.
C&C Group plc have pledged to be a carbon-neutral business by 2050 at the latest. We have recently set our emissions reduction targets which are grounded in climate science and will be validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (‘SBTi’). We are committed to reduce our absolute Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions by 35% by 2030 (Vs a FY2020 base year). To achieve our target of reducing our Scope 3 emissions by 25% (Vs a FY2020 base year) by 2030, we have also committed that suppliers and customers making up 67% of our Scope 3 emissions (Purchased Goods, Downstream Transport and Use of Sold Goods will have science-based targets in place by 2026. The Group will continuously engage with suppliers and customers to support them to set science-based targets for their own emissions.
A cross functional team has been established to lead our alignment with the TCFD guidance. An expert external party has also been engaged to support this process.
We continue to embed climate considerations into our overall strategic planning and investment appraisal process.
Sustainability and climate related metrics were included as part of the Long-Term Incentive Plan (‘LTIP’) for Executive Directors in FY2022.
We have established a Risk & Compliance Committee which is responsible for monitoring and managing climate risk. This committee is composed of executives and various levels of management from across the Group and will meet bi-monthly. The Risk Committee for Sustainability and Climate Change reports to the Audit Committee; however, we are in the process of evaluating and developing additional reporting lines which will see the Risk Committee for Sustainability and Climate Change reporting also to the ESG Committee in order to improve our oversight of climate-related risks and opportunities.
The Group ensures strong overall corporate social responsibility of suppliers is reviewed and assessed both on an ongoing basis and as part of new tenders to ensure sustainability and ethical practices are a fundamental part of the supply chain.
Consumer preference may change, new competing brands may be launched and competitors may increase their marketing or change their pricing policies. Failure to respond to competition and/or changes in customer preferences could have an adverse impact on sales, profits and cash flow within the Group.
COVID-19 may have an impact on the viability of a certain cohort of the Group’s customers and on underlying consumer behaviour and preferences.
Through diversification, innovation and strategic partnerships, we are developing our product portfolio to enhance our offering of niche and premium products to satisfy changing consumer requirements including the production of low and non-alcoholic variants of our brands.
The Group has a programme of brand investment, innovation and product diversification to maintain and enhance the relevance of its products in the market.
The Group also operates a brand‐led model in our core geographies with a comprehensive range to meet consumer needs.
In order to specifically assist customers manage the impact of COVID-19, the Group provided a ‘holiday’ on capital and interest repayments to loan customers, full credit or ‘new for old’ on un-broached kegs, together with a dedicated helpline to offer advice and guidance around government support initiatives that were introduced and how to access them as well as assistance and advice in relation to hygiene measures.
The Group’s ability to attract, develop, engage and retain a diverse, talented and capable workforce is critical if the Group is to continue to compete and grow effectively.
A number of external factors including the COVID-19 pandemic, have increased the competition for talent and labour across all sectors.
Failure to continue to evolve our culture, diversity and inclusion could impact our reputation and delivery of our strategy.
The Group seeks to mitigate this risk through employment policies and procedures, as well as ongoing enhancements to pay and conditions, including benchmarking remuneration packages to ensure market competitiveness, broadening the scope of variable elements of remuneration and the development of retention and succession plans for critical roles.
The Group’s approach to talent management and executive succession planning is regularly reviewed by the Group Executive and is overseen by the ESG, Nomination Committee and the Board.
A key focus of the Group’s sustainability agenda is to build a purpose led, culturally diverse, engaged and inclusive workforce, where our people can be at their best, contribute to the Group’s success and realise their career ambitions. Progress is monitored through KPIs and a six monthly Group wide employee engagement survey.
The Group has continued to prioritise the safety and wellbeing of employees as it has navigated the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A health and safety related incident could result in serious injury to the Group’s employees, contractors, customers and visitors, which could adversely affect our operations and result in reputational damage, criminal prosecution, civil litigation and damage to the reputation of the Group and its brands.
The continuing COVID-19 pandemic presents a specific risk to the health and welfare of the Group’s employees, as measures required to be adopted by societies and businesses to help prevent the spread of the virus adversely effect our employees.
The Group has a Health, Safety and Environmental (‘HSE’) team who work closely with management to ensure that the Group complies with all health, safety and environmental laws and regulations with ongoing monitoring, reporting and training.
The Group has established protocols and procedures for incident management and product recall and mitigates the financial impact by appropriate insurance cover.
Stringent COVID-19 protocols remain in place at all sites. These include remote working in some locations, employee and visitor screening protocols, segregation and zoning and use of appropriate personal protective equipment.
Our support for mental health and wellbeing has increased this year, with a significant expansion of our Mental Health First Aider population and investment in a range of resources.
The quality and safety of our products is of critical importance and any failure in this regard could result in a recall of the Group’s products, damage to brand image and civil or criminal liability.
The COVID-19 virus continues to present additional risk to the safe production of the Group’s products.
The Group has implemented quality control and technical guidelines which are adhered to across all sites. Group Technical continually monitor quality standards and compliance with technical guidelines.
The Group also has quality agreements with all raw material suppliers, setting out our minimum acceptable standards. Any supplies which do not meet the defined standards are rejected and returned.
The Group has enacted specific business continuity plans and a range of measures to protect the business in line with the advice of governments and local health authorities; and ensure the safe production and distribution of the Group’s products.
Circumstances such as the prolonged loss of a production or storage facility, disruptions to its supply chains or critical IT systems and reduced supply of raw materials may interrupt the supply of the Group’s products, adversely impacting results and reputation.
FY2022 has seen unprecedented global supply chain disruption. The COVID-19 pandemic combined with an increased number of other disruptive events have posed the risk of an interruption to the supply of raw materials or to the effective operation of the Group’s manufacturing facilities.
Also, there is a risk of increased input costs due to poor harvests and price of inputs. Very recently, the conflict in Ukraine has contributed to heightened uncertainty and inflationary pressures.
The Group seeks to mitigate the operational impact of such an event through business continuity plans, which are tested regularly to ensure that interruptions to the business are prevented or minimised and that data is protected from unauthorised access, contingency planning, including involving the utilisation of third party sites and the adoption of fire safety standards and disaster recovery protocols. The Group seeks to mitigate the financial impact of such an event through business interruption and other insurance covers.
The Group has enacted specific business continuity plans including a range of measures to protect the integrity of production and distribution facilities and increased packaging capacity to meet increased take home demand. To date we have maintained strong levels of service into our customer base. We have taken action to ensure our facilities are staffed sufficiently, that our production plans optimise the capacity available at each of our sites and that we prioritise the SKUs that current consumer demand requires. The Group is also working closely with its suppliers to protect the integrity and consistency of supply of raw materials.
The Group seeks to minimise input risks through long‐term or fixed price supply agreements, where applicable. The Group continues to assess inflationary and other supply chain pressures and impacts on product pricing and will continue to work with our suppliers to identify opportunities to improve supply chain resilience and to selectively pre-purchase products in order to ensure continuity of supply.
The Group does not seek to hedge its exposure to commodity prices by entering into derivative financial instruments.
The Group relies on robust IT systems and supporting infrastructure to manufacture and trade effectively. Any significant disruption or failure of key systems could result in business disruption and revenue loss, accident or misappropriation of confidential information.
Failure to properly manage existing systems, or the implementation of new IT systems may result in increased costs and/or lost revenue, and reputational damage.
The Group has continued to focus on modern cloud-based assets which are naturally more resilient to failure.
Business and IT continuity has been maintained during the COVID-19 pandemic by updating operating models to ensure the safety of our workforce and customers. Nevertheless, the risk of disruption or failure of critical IT infrastructure, as well as process failure remains a significant risk.
Failure or compromise of our IT infrastructure or key IT systems may result in theft, loss of information, inability to operate effectively, financial or regulatory penalties, loss of financial control and negatively impact our reputation. Failure to comply with legal or regulatory requirements relating to data security (including cyber security) or data privacy in the course of our business activities, may result in reputational damage, fines or other adverse consequences, including criminal penalties and consequential litigation, adverse impact on our financial results or unfavourable effects on our ability to do business.
There is a constant threat of significant and sophisticated cyber attacks including phishing, ransom ware, malware and social engineering.
A continuation of home working as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in the risk of cyber/phishing attacks across all organisations.
Using personal data in a non-compliant manner (whether deliberately or inadvertently) may exacerbate the impact of security incidents.
Following the incident affecting Matthew Clark and Bibendum IT systems in April 2021, we have reviewed our information security and cyber preparedness policies and procedures, enhanced our information technology systems and controls, including the appointment of a Technology and Transformation Director and Group Head of IT.
In the field of information technology and security, the Group undertakes a regular security assurance programme, testing controls, identifying weaknesses and prioritising remediation activities where necessary. This includes periodic best practice specialist security testing by a leading third party provider and regular system scanning to identify security weaknesses. Issues are assessed for risk and are comprehensively managed as part of the Group’s risk management programme. The Board and Audit Committee is presented with regular detailed Information Security Reports by the Technology and Transformation Director and Group Head of IT, which includes recommendations for further reinforcements, and a roadmap for further risk reduction. As a demonstration of our commitment to tackling cyber security we are currently pursuing Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation from the National Cyber Security Centre (‘NCSC’).
An appropriate governance structure is in place including an IT & DP risk committee. Cyber security is a major focus area for the Board and Audit Committee who this year received three formal updates from the Group Transformation and Technology Director.
A programme of initiatives has been implemented and enhancements made to further reduce cyber risk. Specialist external IT security team undertake a 24/7 security monitoring service, a vulnerability management programme, a software review process, supply chain partner audits, a data loss prevention programme and identity governance controls amongst other initiatives.
During FY2022 we continued our ongoing programme of investment in cyber security controls which included Endpoint Detect and Respond (‘EDR’), Cloud Access Security Broker (‘CASB’), Domain based Message authentication, Reporting and Conformance (‘DMARC’), email authentication and enhanced data loss prevention controls.
Business continuity, disaster recovery and crisis management plans are in place and tested on a regular basis.
We continue to prioritise a number of initiatives to further minimise the risk profile, including employees receiving regular online cyber security training and ongoing awareness is promoted through monthly phishing training and other initiatives to keep employees abreast of new and emerging threats.
Policies are in place regarding the protection of both business and personal information, with support from the newly appointed, Group Data Protection Officer.
As the Group reacts to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is necessary to adjust to change and assimilate new business models. The breadth and pace of change can present strategic and operational challenges.
Business integration and change that are not managed effectively could result in unrealised synergies, poor project governance, poor project delivery, increased staff turnover, erosion of value and failure to deliver growth.
Significant projects and acquisitions have formal leadership and project management teams to deliver integration.
Regular Group communications ensure effective information, engagement and feedback flow to support cultural change.
The Executive Management team oversees change management and integration risks through regular meetings.
The Group operates in an environment governed by strict and extensive regulations to ensure the safety and protection of customers, shareholders, employees and other stakeholders. These laws and regulations include hygiene, health and safety, the rules of the London Stock Exchange and competition law. Changing laws and regulation may impact our ability to market or sell certain products or could cause the Group to incur additional costs or liabilities that could adversely affect its business. Moreover, breach of our internal global policies and standards could result in severe damage to our corporate reputation and/or significant financial penalty.
Companies face increased risk of fraud and corruption, both internally and externally, due to financial pressures and changes to ways of working as a consequence of COVID-19.
The Company Secretary and Group General Counsel is a member of the Executive Committee and is supported by appropriately skilled in-house legal, data protection and company secretarial resource, with further support provided by external lawyers and advisors.
Policies and procedures are in place to ensure compliance with regulations and legislation, providing updated documentation, training and communication across the Group.
The Group’s Code of Conduct and supporting policies, clearly define the standards and expectations for all employees and third parties.
A mandatory online employee compliance programme is in place to embed employees understanding of key compliance risks.
The Group’s Vault whistleblowing service, managed and facilitated by an independent third party, is available to all employees to raise concerns with regard to suspected wrongdoings or unethical behaviours. All calls are followed up and investigated fully with all findings reported to the Board.
The Group maintains appropriate internal controls and procedures to guard against economic crime and imposes appropriate monitoring and controls on subsidiary management.
The Group faces considerable risk if we are unable to uphold high levels of consumer awareness, retain and attract key associates and sponsorships for our brands, or if we have inadequate marketing investment to support our brands.
Maintaining and enhancing brand image and reputation through the creation of strong brand identities is crucial for sustaining and driving revenue and profit growth.
The closure of on-trade outlets and a reduction in the Group’s marketing and brand advertising due to COVID-19 may impact the Group’s brand health scores.
To mitigate this risk, C&C has defined values and goals for all our brands. These form the foundation of our product and brand communication strategies.
Central to all our brand image initiatives is ensuring clear and consistent messaging to our targeted consumer audience.
Executive Management, Group Legal and internal/external PR consultants work together to ensure that all sponsorship and affiliations are appropriate and protect the position of our brands.
The Group is monitoring the impact of the rapidly changing trading environment on the Group’s brands and will make necessary investment decisions to protect the Group’s brand health scores and reputation.
The Group is subject to a number of financial and credit risks such as adverse exchange and interest rate fluctuations, availability of supplier credit, credit management of customers and possible increase to pension funds deficits and cash contributions.
COVID-19 may have a further impact on the Group’s liquidity, due to lower on-trade revenues, customers’ ability to honour their obligations, and the Group’s ability to access supplier credit.
Non-conformities of accounting and financial controls could impair the accuracy of the data used for internal reporting, decision-making and external communication.
The Group seeks to mitigate currency risks, where appropriate, through hedging and structured financial contracts to hedge a portion of its foreign currency transaction exposure. It has not entered into structured financial contracts to hedge its translation exposure on its foreign acquisitions.
In relation to pensions, continuous monitoring, taking professional advice on the optimisation of asset returns within agreed acceptable risk tolerances and implementing liability‐management initiatives.
A range of credit management controls are in place which are regularly monitored by management to minimise the risk and exposure.
The Group is working with all customers and suppliers to minimise the adverse impact of COVID-19 on the business.
Contracts may be renegotiated. We continue to focus on retention and new sales opportunities as customers move to more resilient and “best in class” operations.
A range of key internal financial controls, such as segregation of duties, authorisations and detailed reviews are in place with regular monitoring by management to ensure the accuracy of the data for reporting purposes.
Assessment of the Group’s Prospects
The Directors have adopted the going concern basis in preparing the financial statements after assessing the Group’s principal risks including the risks associated with COVID-19.
Following the Rights Issue that the Group successfully completed in June 2021 in which the Group raised £151 million (€176 million) and as a consequence of COVID-19, the debt covenants for 31 August 2022 were renegotiated to increase the threshold of the Group's Net Debt/Adjusted EBITDA covenant to not exceed 4.5x and to reduce the Interest cover covenant to be not less than 2.5x. Restrictions including a minimum liquidity requirement of €150.0 million each month and a monthly gross debt limit of €700.0 million also apply. The Group is on track to meet these amended covenants, which end in August 2022 and revert to the traditional covenant metrics (Net Debt: Adjusted EBITDA not exceeding 3.5:1 and Interest Cover not less than 3.5:1) for its FY2023 full year results. In fact, the Group is back within its traditional covenant metrics as at 28 February 2022. However the restrictions will continue to apply until the Group demonstrates compliance with the traditional covenant metrics at its FY2023 full year results, unless it can show Net Debt: Adjusted EBITDA not exceeding 3:1 and Interest Cover not less than 4:1 for its FY2023 half year results, in which case the restrictions will end at that point.
The proceeds from the Rights Issue of £151 million (€176 million), coupled with a return to profitability and cash generation following the easing of government restrictions around COVID-19 in our core markets and disciplined balance sheet management has led to net debt excluding leases and liquidity of €191 million and €439 million respectively at year end compared with €362 million and €315 million respectively in FY2021. The Group delivered a leverage of 3.4x Net Debt/EBITDA as at 28 February 2022 and as previously noted is back within its traditional covenant metrics.
The Group returned to profitability in May 2021 following the easing of government restrictions around COVID-19 in our core markets, with trading ahead of plan. However, renewed Government restrictions on the hospitality industry around the key Christmas trading period adversely impacted performance. With the lifting once again of restrictions towards the latter stages of FY2022, the Group’s on-trade performance improved, providing a platform for a clean start to FY2023. Cost inflation pressures have grown over recent months and in response, the Group implemented a series of price increases which, alongside the previously announced €18.0 million cost reduction programme and cost hedge positions taken, affords the Group a degree of protection from the inflationary environment as we enter into FY2023.
The Directors assessed the Group’s cash flow forecasts for the period ending 31 August 2023 (the going concern “assessment period”). The Cashflows included various stress testing scenarios around higher costs, an evolving inflationary environment and reduced volumes, in part associated with the impact of the on-going conflict in Ukraine, but even at FY2022 profit levels, which were significantly curtailed as a consequence of the COVID-19 restrictions, the Group would have sufficient headroom to covenants. The Group's cash flow forecasts assume the continuation of trading over the assessment period with no lockdowns or the reintroduction of COVID-19 restrictions.
The headroom on the covenants within the financing facilities have been reviewed in detail by management and assessed by the Directors. Given the successful Rights Issue in June 2021; the return to profitability in the Group’s core markets; the price increases implemented, cost hedge positions taken and the disposal of the Group’s share of Admiral Taverns in FY2023, the Group's cashflow forecasts demonstrate significant headroom on the covenants within the financing facilities. Given the quantum of headroom, the Directors have concluded that the covenants will be satisfied and therefore consider it appropriate to adopt the going concern basis of accounting with no material uncertainties as to the Group’s ability to continue to do so.
As set out in Provision 31 of the UK Corporate Governance Code, the Directors have assessed the prospects of the Group and its ability to meet its liabilities as they fall due over the medium-term. Specifically, the Directors have assessed the viability of the business over a three-year period to February 2025. In conducting the assessment the Directors have taken account of the Group’s current position and prospects, the Group’s strategy, the Board’s risk appetite and the Group’s Principal Risks and Uncertainties as set out above and how these are identified, managed and mitigated. Based on this assessment, which includes a robust assessment of the potential impact that these risks would have on the Group’s business model, future performance, solvency and liquidity, the Directors have a reasonable expectation that the Group will be able to continue in operation and meet its liabilities as they fall due over the three-year period to February 2025.
Group’s strategic planning process
The Board considers annually a strategic plan. Current year business performance is reforecast during the year and a more detailed budget is prepared for the following year. The most recent financial plan was approved by the Board in March 2022. The plan is reviewed and approved by the Board, with involvement from the Group CEO, Group CFO and the management team. Part of the Board’s role is to consider the appropriateness of key assumptions, considering the external environment, business strategy and model including the impact of COVID-19.
Period of Assessment
Given the uncertainty at the time of issuing last year’s Annual Report, the Directors determined that a two year period was the appropriate period to consider the Group’s viability. Given the current outlook for future trading, the Directors have determined that the three year period to February 2025 is an appropriate period over which to provide its viability statement. This period has been considered for the following reasons:
- The business model can be evolved for significant changes in market structure or government policy over the three year period;
- For major investment projects three years is considered by the Board to be a reasonable time horizon for an assessment of the outcome; and
- The Group’s strategic planning cycle covers a three year period.
The Directors’ assessment of the Group’s viability has been made with reference to the 2022 performance and its budget for FY2023. The Group returned to profitability in May 2021 following the easing of government restrictions around COVID-19 in our core markets, with trading ahead of plan. However, renewed Government restrictions on the hospitality industry around the key Christmas trading period adversely impacted performance. With the lifting of restrictions towards the latter stages of FY2022, the Group’s on-trade performance improved, providing a platform for a clean start to FY2023. Cost inflation pressures have grown over recent months and in response, the Group implemented a series of price increases which, alongside the previously announced €18.0 million cost reduction programme and cost hedge positions taken, affords the Group a degree of protection from the inflationary environment as we enter into FY2023.
The Group also successfully completed a Rights Issue in June 2021, raising gross proceeds of £151 million (€176 million). This coupled with a return to profitability and cash generation following the easing of government restrictions around COVID-19 in our core markets and disciplined balance sheet management has led to net debt excluding leases and liquidity of €191 million and €439 million respectively at year end compared with €362 million and €315 million respectively in FY2021. The Group delivered a leverage of 3.4x Net Debt/EBITDA as at 28 February 2022 and are back within the traditional covenant metrics as at 28 February 2022 (Net Debt: Adjusted EBITDA not exceeding 3.5:1 and Interest Cover not less than 3.5:1). However, the waiver restrictions will continue to apply until the Group demonstrates compliance with the traditional covenant metrics at its FY2023 full year results, unless it can show Net Debt: Adjusted EBITDA not exceeding 3:1 and Interest Cover not less than 4:1 for its FY2023 half year results, in which case the restrictions will end at that point.
The Board reviewed the assessment of the Group’s prospects made by management, including:
The development of a rigorous planning process, the outputs of which are comprised of a strategic plan, a consolidated financial forecast for the current year and financial projections for future years covering the period of the plan;
A comprehensive review of the strategic plan as part of its annual strategy review, with regular monitoring of the achievement of strategic objectives taking place at each Board meeting;
Assumptions are built at both Group and business unit levels and are subject to detailed examination, challenge and sensitivity analysis by management and the Directors. This included assumptions around higher cost and reduced volumes but even at FY2022 profit levels which were significantly curtained as a consequence of the COVID-19 restrictions, the Group would have sufficient headroom. The Group’s cash flow forecasts assume the continuation of trading over the assessment period with no lockdowns or the reintroduction of COVID-19 restrictions;
A consideration of how the impact of one or more of the Group’s Principal Risks and Uncertainties, particularly in respect of the extent and timing of the recovery in the on-trade business from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, could materially impact the Group’s performance, solvency or liquidity; and
The impact of climate change on the Financial Statements. The assessment concluded that climate change is not expected to have a material impact on the viability of the Group in the short term. Further detailed scenario and qualification analysis on the CROs in the TCFD report will be examined in FY2023.
These considerations include external factors such as the impacts of the expected high levels of inflation, lower economic growth, particularly in our key areas of operation, the potential impacts of COVID-19 on the Group, unfavourable currency exchange rate movements, increased regulations and internal factors such as the strategic plan under-delivering, the loss of a key production site or a health and safety related event. These considerations also took into account additional mitigating measures available to the Group, including the ability to reduce capital expenditure and the potential availability of additional debt facilities. As at 28 February 2022, the Group had total undrawn committed credit facilities of €374.0 million, and €64.7 million cash net of overdrafts.
The Audit Committee reviews the output of the viability assessment in advance of final evaluation by the Board. Having reviewed these elements, the COVID-19 related challenges and impacts experienced in FY2022 and those anticipated for the years ahead, current performance, forecasts, debt servicing requirements, total facilities and risks, the Board has a reasonable expectation that the Group has adequate resources to continue in operation, meet its liabilities as they fall due and retain sufficient available cash across the assessment period.
The Board therefore has a reasonable expectation that the Group will remain viable over the period of assessment. The Board does not expect any reasonably anticipated COVID-19 outcome to impact the Group’s long-term viability.
Strategic Report Approval
The Strategic Report, outlined on pages 2 to 81, (including the assessment of the Group’s prospects as set out above) incorporates the Highlights, the Business Profile and Key Performance Indicators, the Chair’s Statement, the Group Chief Financial Officer’s report, the Sustainability Report and the Management of Risks and Uncertainties section of this document.
This report was approved by the Board of Directors on 17 May 2022.