May insolvency and administration round-up

Many companies are now wrestling with the issues about going back to work. 

 

Some will welcome the opportunity to get back into gear and start making money again. Others will be more tentative and have a lot more questions about health, safety, responsibility and liability. 

 

Others, that aren’t in England for instance, might not have the option to reopen at all. 

 

No matter which scenario you find yourself in, you can catch up on all the other business and insolvency news stories this week:


What insolvency and administration news happened in May?

Birmingham Nightingale

 

 

 

 

 

 

Johnsons Shoes walk into administration

 

50-year-old Johnsons Shoe Company which also owns the Bowleys Fine Shoes brand entered into administration this week. 

 

Administrators will continue to look for a buyer for the business which has 12 stores and 145 staff but admitted that while they had traded strongly for many years, last year was particularly difficult as they battled rising rent and business rates with increased competition from online shopping. 

 

The coronavirus lockdown meant the tightened lace finally snapped for them.  

 

Back to the drawing board for Grenfell refurbishment

 

Studio E, the architects who created the vision for the refurbishment of Grenfell Tower, have gone into liquidation. 

 

The practice had 12 employees and struggled as all work on the project ceased following the lockdown. Although they had previously done work for the local council and had won the contract on the back of this experience, they came over poorly in the public enquiry when questioned how they could manage all the increased safety requirements for new exterior cladding. 

 

Lack of Summer seasons means curtains for Southport Theatre

 

Southport Theatre and Convention Centre officially went into liquidation this week. 

 

The facility operated on a part-time basis, closing down in the winter months, but opening in the Summer when visitors to the Merseyside resort would usually be at their peak.  

 

Enforced and increased social distancing and ongoing safety requirements means that the prospect for this year looked especially bleak for the trust that operated the centre.  

 

After the decision was made, enquiries made by the local council revealed that the building would also require an additional £1.2 million in repairs before it could reopen to the public which would also have impacted on any decision to open to the public. 

 

Case closed for luggage manufacturer Antler

 

Antler, the bespoke luggage retailer that had exclusive partnerships with John Lewis and Selfridges, has made 164 of its staff redundant and appointed an administrator less than three months after being bought by a new management team. 

 

Sales had collapsed with the restrictions imposed on international air travel along with the closure of their retail and wholesale outlets. A spokesperson said: “WIth uncertainty over the lifting of travel restrictions placing further financial strain on the business, the directors concluded that they had no option but to appoint administrators.”

 

The business will continue to trade via online channels while they look for a buyer and other options.

 

Furniture groups closes its doors

 

JDP Furniture in Derby which manufactured and sold its own designs under several brands has gone into liquidation and closed operations with the loss of nearly 250 positions. 

 

Administrators are considering pursuing a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) for the business’s Arlo & Jacob and Celebrity Motion Furniture Limited brands as they believe these have some potential for recovery if creditors can agree.

 

Top sandwich maker goes into administration

 

Adelie, the sandwich maker which supplied Caffe Nero and Lidl with a range of delicious, ready-to-eat sandwiches has called in administrators after failing to find a buyer. 

 

The chain, which lost Asda and Sainsburys as clients in 2016, had been up for sale but couldn’t complete a deal with interested parties before the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown intervened. 

 

A spokesperson said: “The impact of COVID-19 on the Company’s order book resulted in a material funding requirement and, as a result, we had been working hard with Adelie’s management to try and secure a buyer to ensure the right longer-term future for the business.” 

 

Based near Heathrow Airport, Adelie employs 2,000 workers.

 

Luxury loses lustre for Jacada

 

Bespoke travel experience company Jacada has gone into administration with the loss of 52 positions. 

 

Travelling to some of the most glamorous destinations in the world, the lockdown was too much for a company that relied on a high spending clientele. 

 

Some of the company’s assets have already been sold to a former competitor called Wilderness Safaris which gives an idea of the kind of trips one could have booked with Jacada but even this wouldn’t be enough to sustain the business in any sustainable way in the future. 

 

As the second Bank Holiday weekend of May begins to concentrate minds on the coronavirus lockdown being lifted, for many businesses, reopening in any form is becoming of critical importance. 

 

Whether you’re continuing to trade in changed circumstances or if you’re straining at the leash to open your doors again – you’ve got some time to contact us.

 

We’ll arrange a free, initial consultation with one of our experienced expert advisors who can help you focus on what you can do right now to relieve some pressure on your finances and get the business ready for when you can open the doors wide again. 

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