Embattled retail group Steinhoff, which has majority stakes in Mattress Firm in the US and the Pepkor group, saw its first-half loss double as Covid-19 shuttered stores and hit consumer spending.

The group reported a first-half-loss of €1.52bn (about R30bn) in the six months to end-March from €617m previously. The group had net debt of €9.7bn at the end of March, from €9.6bn as of the end of its 2019 financial year.

The group’s future is in question after it announced a €6.5bn hole in its accounts in 2017.

About 90 separate lawsuits have been filed against Steinhoff, with combined claims of more than R136bn, with the group announcing a settlement plan earlier in July.

In afternoon trade on Thursday, Steinhoff’s share was down 1% to 99c, having fallen 98.5% over the past three years.