Six weeks ago, billionaire Solomon Lew told landlords that none of the 1,200 stores within his Premier Investments group would be paying rent while they were closed because of COVID-19.
With the majority of stores now re-opening, Lew has said they will no longer pay fixed rent, but a percentage of gross store sales, to be paid in arrears.
Premier is the largest retail tenant in Australia, and 70% of its outlets’ rental agreements either expire in 2020 or are in ‘hold-over’. This gives Lew plenty of leverage to use COVID-19 as the opportunity to get his rental terms changed permanently:
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