All the stories you might have missed

May continues to see companies and staff straining every sinew to keep the business on the rails while awaiting news of a lifting or loosening of the lockdown. 

We’ll get more details later this week which will give companies an idea of what will need to happen before they can take the first tentative steps towards a form of reopening. 

In the meantime, catch up on all the other business and insolvency news stories this week:

Even new media isn’t immune to old business rules

The oldest being that if you don’t make a profit then no matter how hilarious your viral videos, you won’t be able to keep the lights on for long. 

Award-winning social video publisher The Hook went into administration despite attracting over 14 million followers on its various social media platforms. 

Initially set up to be the UK’s answer to similar mutli-genre publishers such as Vice and College Humor, the business ran into significant cash flow issues in the first quarter of the year. 

Some assets and staff were sold by administrators to another Brave Bison, another social video company but the rest of the staff have been made redundant.

Footballers luxury swimwear brand sinks after sales shrink

Thomas Royall, a luxury swimwear and lifestyle leisurewear brand that had former football legend John Terry as one of its directors, has gone into liquidation. 

Founded by two other footballers, Sam Saunders and Liam Ridgewell, Thomas Royall was sold in Harrods and Harvey Nichols as well as online and targeted the young and aspirational.  

Terry stepped down as a director last year but continued to promote and advertise the brand on his popular social media profiles. 

Sadly, travel and leisure are two of the industries that will continue to be most badly affected by the coronavirus pandemic so with little chance of a swift turnaround in fortunes, the business made the decision to close.

Pandemic lockdown becomes a nightmare for Dreamland

Dreamland, a 100-year-old popular amusement park in Margate, has made 52 members of staff redundant after announcing that it wouldn’t reopen this summer.

22 will remain with the company to protect the site and continue business planning after the government’s furlough scheme is expected to end on June 30th 2020. 

Eddie Kemsley, Chief Executive, said: “No attraction in the world could have prepared for the devastation of Covid-19. 

“The costs of running an amusement park with no guarantee off attendance coupled with the uncertain future of public gatherings represent a financial risk. 

“Beyond lockdown, social distancing means we must prepare for a substantial drop in predicted visitor numbers and income for the remainder of the year “

The park had been due to hold a huge Hi-Tide festival headlined by Fat Boy Slim and Madness in July to celebrate their centenery celebrations. 

Hopefully they will get to host one in the future. 

Oh no – OYO Hotels to lose half of their staff

Under normal circumstances, trendy lifestyle accomodation brands such as OYO Hotels and Airbnb were the future of the industry. 

Covid-19 has put paid to any immediate thoughts of continuing their meteoric rise. 

OYO are making up to 200 of their 300 staff redundant across their 100 strong chain of UK hotels. 

Rishabh Gupta, head of UK OYO Hotels said that the pandemic “has and will hit harder than all previous disruptions put together.”

He also said that in his opinion there were no clear signs or timelines for recovery. 

Even a hotel chain without any hotels isn’t immune to the coronavirus caused fallout engulfing the sector. 

Airbnb have announced that they will be losing 25% of their worldwide workforce including employees in the UK. This is approx. 1,900 positions in total although no details of how many would be in the UK. 

Co-founder and chief executive Brian Chesky said: “We will have to part with teammates that we love and value. We have great people leaving Airbnb and other companies will be lucky to have them.”

Next week will see the first details announced of a possible  post-lockdown environment emerging. 

Companies will be eager to see how they can go about their business safely and start to bring both staff and customers back into the fold.

This is an ideal opportunity for you get in touch with us to help make sure your business is pumped, primed and ready to go. 

We offer an initial free, virtual consultation with an expert team of advisors ready to help you see what you can do to give your business the most vital tune-up it’s ever had.