(Reuters) – Alstom Group said on Wednesday it was considering a capital increase, job cuts and asset sales as part of a series of efforts to reduce its debt and ease consumer concerns. investors.

The stock’s quotation, which began a few minutes late, fell by 18.52% around 10:13 GMT.

“Alstom’s negative free cash flow during this first half constitutes a clear call for change. Although demand remains at a sustained level, despite some volatility, our commercial performance has been weak,” declared the chairman and director. General Henri Poupart-Lafarge in a press release.

The company is considering a capital increase even though it is not the preferred option, Henri Poupart-Lafarge told analysts, fearing that asset sales would not be enough.

“We estimated with the board of directors that there was a risk that this would not be sufficient,” he said. Alstom’s management has been under pressure since the group significantly downgraded its annual forecast. of FCF in October. The company announced an asset disposal program aimed at generating between 500 million and 1 billion euros. The group also announced its intention to eliminate around 1,500 positions in order to achieve its medium-term objectives.

Alstom plans to reduce its net debt by 2 billion euros by March 2025. As of September 30, the group reported net debt of 3.43 billion euros.

The French railway equipment specialist also indicated that Henri Poupart-Lafarge will leave his position as chairman of the board of directors while retaining his role as general manager. Alstom’s board of directors will propose appointing Philippe Petitcolin, former general manager of Safran, to the position of president.

Alstom will propose not to pay a dividend for the current fiscal year.

(Report by Olivier Sorgho, by Augustin Turpin and Lina Golovnya, edited by Kate Entringer)

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