At the end of March, Novares received a cash injection of EUR45m from its shareholders Equistone and BPI, allowing it to reopen 13 of its 19 European production sites.

This followed the company's decision to request the opening of a receivership procedure – similar to the American Chapter 11 – for the Novares Group Holding only, on 29 April, so as to allow the group's operating companies to continue business and to deliver to customers. 

The company was hit hard in the last few weeks with the closure of 40 out of its 45 plants worldwide over a long period. Plants are now reopening in France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Serbia, Turkey and Romania, with better than expected production rates. 

Novares is working on its business continuity plan with the support of its shareholders and has received seven potential investment proposals as part of the divestiture process. Four of these proposals would ensure the financial continuity required at the end of the receivership procedure, expected on 27 May, as well as for the future of the group. 

The company and the procedural bodies are currently carefully examining these four options so as to ensure a successful outcome and to come to a decision before the end of the month. Further information will be announced shortly. 

Pierre Boulet, CEO of Novares, said in a statement: "The results for 2019 and for the beginning of 2020 have shown that the foundations of the Novares Group are solid.

"But the COVID-19 crisis has taken a serious toll on our cash flow, which has been largely factored.

"The overriding aim of being able to ensure deliveries to our customers, as of May, has forced us to seek legal recourse.

"We are now resuming our operations in Europe, and are confident that a solution will be found in the coming days to enable the company to restart activities at [the] American plants, as well as to ensure the future of the [group] in the long term."