Bondholder hits out at Next

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The Independent Online
A BONDHOLDER in Next, the fashion chain, has complained that he missed the chance to cash in his bonds because the company failed to notify him of the redemption date, writes Clare Dobie.

The company recently announced that it had redeemed all but pounds 1.9m of an original pounds 100m rights issue made in 1987. Anyone who missed the 14 October window will have to wait until 2003.

The bonds would have been convertible into shares had Next's share price been higher. But bondholders also had the right to require the company to redeem the bonds on 14 October 1992 at 133 per cent of the issue price.

The company said it had been advised that it was unable to remind some bondholders and not others of the impending redemption date because this would have been to treat them differently.

Some of the bonds are bearer documents - which means the company does not know who owns them - so it was unable to remind any of the holders about the redemption date.