Helping directors for over 23 years.

Talk to us today in confidence:

News

Mercian Cycles To Go Into Liquidation

Derby based Cycle builder Mercian Cycles has gone into liquidation.  The firm specialised in making high quality steel frames with hand made decorative joinery ("lugs" in bike parlance).The company confirmed thr news to the publication road.cc saying: "Mercian Cycles Ltd has ceased to trade, and we have instructed an Insolvency Practitioner to assist us with taking the appropriate steps to place the Company into Creditors' Voluntary Liquidation."Opus Business Advisory Group have been appointed liquidators and said "we will be working closely with the company to help manage a controlled wind down of the business and a smooth transition for stakeholders".The bike company was founded in 1946 and was seen as quite eccentric with its lugs and flamboyant colours.  The firm had quite a cult following in the UK and the USA.However the cycling industry has had a hard time of late due to over capacity following the pandemic when everyone suddenly started to spend money on Bicycles.  Unfortunately, this new found enthusiasm did not last.

Read
Mercian Cycles To Go Into Liquidation
cazoo logo

Cazoo In Administration Move

Update 21st May 2024Cazoo is expected to go into administration today with Teneo being the appointed advisors.  The notice of intention to appoint moratorium expires tomorrow and there appears to not have been a rescue or sale. Cazoo, the online second car dealer, has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators.  The company was at one point worth £6bn and employed 5000 people.  Cazoo was floated on the US stock market and made its founder, Alex Chesterman, (on paper at least) one of the richest men in the UK.The company boomed as it offered a platform for people to buy cars online and have them delivered to their home.  The pandemic helped their growth and the company spent millions on advertising and sponsorship deals.The company admitted last week that it was burning through £10m of cash a month and that it needed an urgent capital injection to survive.Other factors contributing to its problems has been the rapid fall in second hand car values and the slower uptake of electric cars.The company is not in administration right now but has filed an intention to appoint administrators.  This means that the company has 10 days protection from its creditors, who may be threatening winding up petitions, whilst it tries to raise addition funds or sell the business.Once that time period is up they may be able to extend for another 10 days, subject to approval by the court, but there has to be a very strong reason to do so.Check the links on the right hand side for other questions regarding companies going into administration

Read
Cazoo In Administration Move

Everest To Go Into Administration

ReSolve administrators were appointed on Friday to oversee the operations of Everest 2020 Ltd. They will look for a buyer to save all or a portion of the company.More than ten years ago, after it needed a reorganisation, the specialised double glazing company was purchased by British venture capitalist Jon Moulton's investment firm Better Capital.Afterwards, the Covid-19 outbreak struck Everest especially hard; as a result, Better Capital put the company in a pre-pack administration in June 2020, sparing hundreds of jobs.Everest operated a manufacturing facility in Treherbert, Wales, in addition to its headquarters in Cuffley, Hertfordshire.

Read
Everest To Go Into Administration
superdry logo

Superdry Maybe Looking At A CVA

Update : 15 April 2024It hits the news today that landlords of Superdry are considering a restructuring deal that would result in steep rent cuts at a large proportion of its 94 British shops. The scale of the rent cuts would be dependent on the financial performance of each site.According to City sources, the fashion retailer is not planning on any permanent closures, but landlords would have the option to terminate any leases if they were not satisfied with the terms of the deal.Superdry has been facing red for some time. Most recently there were talks with founder, Julian Dunkerton regarding a takeover, but such talks were then aborted.Sky News share more. Update : 29 January 2024In line with other retailers Superdry has been finding trading difficult due to the cost of living crisis.  It has also been cutting back its store count. The clothing brand has 104 stores in the UK and started closing some back in July 2023.  The company also announced that it was looking at costs savings of some £40m.  This is an increase from the £35m they announced recently.  There are now rumours circulating that the company is looking at a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) as a way of cutting costs.The CVA is a powerful rescue tool that is particularly favoured by retailers due to is ability to allow companies to vacate properties and determine their lease obligations.  The cost of high rent shops on long leases can be a heavy burden on retailers.The following case law has been used for some years now to terminate leases with no cash cost to the company.Re: Doorbar v Alltime Securities Ltd (1995) BCC 1149 stated that landlords can be bound by voluntary arrangements for future obligations under a lease.Re: Cancol Ltd (1995) BCC 1133 that the word ‘creditor’ in r1.17(1) IR 86 was wide enough to include a landlord with a right to future rent i.e. the ability to include future rent extends to CVAs as well as Individual Voluntary Arrangements.Furthermore, where the unliquidated or unascertained claim in a CVA involves future rents accruing to a landlord, the case of Re Park Air Services [1996] BCC 556) gives the CVA meeting   chairman some considerable guidance as to quantifying the claim at the meeting.Another reason that Superdry is finding itself in difficulty is that it rapidly expanded to try and become a global super brand.  No doubt much of this expanision was fueled by cheap debt and as many companies are now finding out when interest rates rise and customers pull back the going gets very tough.  As such the shares have lost almost 90% of their value in the last 12 monthsSky News has reported that PWC are the advisors that are looking at restructuring options.It is quite standard practice to put out stories about a possible CVA as this does prepare the ground for negotiations with landlords.  They will be asking the landlords for substantial rent reductions in order for them to survive.  If landlords refuse then they can usually get other suppliers and trade creditors to support a CVA proposal and out vote them.Landlords have tried to challenge CVAs in the courts on the grounds that they unfairly prejudice their position but have so far failed to succeed. 

Read
Superdry Maybe Looking At A CVA

Administration for Torquay United

in News

Devon based, Torquay United, of the National League South, have formally gone into administration. This comes following the deadline which passed on Thursday for any potential bidders to bring some saviour capital. Clarke Osborne, owner, announced his intention to appoint administrators for the club in February, two months later and the intention was made a reality. In March the Gulls faced a 10 point deduction so there will be no further sanction. This paves a more positive outlook despite the situation, particularly as administrators are said to be in talks with interested parties already. Begbies Traynor', Scott Kippax, Neil Vinnicombe and Simon Haskew, will be handling the administration process. In the meantime, the club will be run by directors, George Edwards and Mel Hayman, on a voluntary basis. As for any creditors, the club secretary is contactable directly. "A further announcement is anticipated within the next two weeks when the administrators hope to confirm that the club's future has been secured." Will it be the final whistle? Devon Live shares more and Torquay United answer FAQs for fans, on their website.

Read
Administration for Torquay United

Notts County Administration Threat

Article Originally published in February 2019 The worlds oldest football league club, Notts County, risk going into administration, according to an exclusive Sky Sports News report. The club are five points from safety of the league, with a financial crisis giving their future many red cards. Chairman, Alan Hardy brought the club in January 2017, and put it up for sale just last month. To purchase the club, it has been revealed that Hardy used a loan from his interior design company, Paragon. The recent accounts posted on Companies House in June 2017, refer to a ‘related party debt’, of £7m, for Paragon Interiors Group – the value of the funds used to buy the club. Paragons business situation stresses administration, with the company already stopping work on numerous projects, advising customers they will hope to catch up in March. If the business call in administrators, the debt from Notts County is likely to be demanded, leaving huge doubt for the football clubs finances and future. Supporters to the club have watched them loose their league two play-off semi final to Coventry in May…thinking that was bad, they now watch them face relegation for the first time of the 157-years of existence. Will the final whistle be blown? Is this the end?

Read
Notts County Administration Threat
ted baker

15 UK Stores to Close and 245 Jobs Lost for Ted Baker

08th April 2024Administrators announce that Ted Baker is to close 15 UK stores (of which ''have no prospect of being returned to profitability, even with material rent reductions") and cut 245 jobs.Of this, 11 stores will close by 19 April, resulting in the loss of 120 jobs.Then 25 roles from head office will go along with a further 4 stores, impacting the remaining 100 jobs.For the full list of closing stores:Birmingham Bullring Bristol Bromley Cambridge Exeter Leeds Liverpool One London Bridge Milton Keynes Nottingham Oxford Bicester London Brompton Road London Floral Street Manchester Trafford 22nd March 2024Teneo has been appointed as administrator of No Ordinary Designer Label (NODL) Limited - the company of which runs 46 Ted Baker stores in the UK along with a website and concessions.NODL has approx. 975 employees.Authentic Brands, which licenses the Ted Baker brand to the NODL, is in advanced discussions with potential buyers for the company.Reported reasons for the appointment of administrators are the struggles the firm faced following damage done during a partnership and a high level of arrears built up during a partnership with AARC Group. At the end of January 2024 AARC and NODL cut ties. 19th March 2024 It has been reported that Ted Baker, the clothing retailer, has filed a Notice of Intention to Appoint Administrators. This move is designed to give it a chance of recovery by protecting it from creditors legal actions for a 10 day period.  An injection of capital or a sale is hoped to be achieved during this period.A filed winding up petition (subsequently withdrawn) forced Ted Baker's hand.This latest move comes after the company delisted from the Stock Exchange and was sold to US-based Authentic Brands Group (ABG) for a knockdown price of £210m.  This follows a similar pattern to The Body Shop that was also bought out by private equity and then months later went into administration. Why don't these companies consider using a CVA to lower their debt? The likely reason is that these companies have been loaded with lots of secure debt which cannot be compromised by a CVA.  Property costs, HMRC, and suppliers are unsecured and can be bound by the terms of a CVA.  So, in essence, it wasn't expensive shop premises that have caused problems but indebtness.Ted Baker has suffered, like many other retailers, by the lockdowns, cost of living crisis and has borrowed money to try and survive.John McNamara, chief strategy officer for Authentic Brands Group, said: “We wish that there could have been a better outcome for the Ted Baker employees and stakeholders. We remain focused on securing a new partner to uphold and grow the Ted Baker brand in the UK and Europe where it began.”The company employs more than 900 staff and currently operates 46 stores across the country, as well as online and through department store concessions.There has not been an announcement on any redundancies yet.

Read
15 UK Stores to Close and 245 Jobs Lost for Ted Baker

Matchesfashion to dwindle into administration

Matchesfashion, the luxury online clothes retailer is to be put into administration by Mike Ashley's Frasers Group.Sky News reports that a number of brands terminated their relationship with the site and the company faced heavy losses, thus the filing of a notice of intention to appoint administrators.Other sources have reported that some of the brands have not been paid for months and that some suppliers were asked for discounts.Along with this, there has been a sharp slowdown noticed across the global luxury goods sector, as the UKs current economic state has left many consumers with less disposable income to put towards such goods.Frasers Group took on the clothing platform not even 3 months ago. It is not clear if control would remain with Frasers in the event of a pre-pack insolvency.Nick Beighton has led the company since 2022. With his leadership the platform saw a steep increase in performance, said to be due to his renewed focus on operational efficiency and effective marketing. It is also unclear if Mr Beighton would continue in his role post-administration.Matchesfashion features more than 500 established and 'new generation' designers, delivering to over 170 countries.Matchesfashion is the second high-profile retailer to be put into administration shortly after being taken over in recent weeks. Earlier this year Aurelius placed the UK chain of The Body Shop into administration.  Why does this happen?  Could it be hubris or do these buyers see more value in the brand name rather than the actual business in the long term.  The brand name is usually retained and sold back to the original owners if the business as a whole is not sold to a third party.Will the clothing platform be brought back to life?

Read
Matchesfashion to dwindle into administration

The Body Shop To Exit Administration With A CVA

According to reports the Body Shop may be using a CVA to exit from administration in order to continue trading.  The administrators have drawn up plans to discuss rent cuts with landlords.  Read our page on administration followed by CVA 20th February 2024The Body Shop has announced that it will close approximately half of its stores, starting with 7 that will close immediately today; Surrey Quays (London), Oxford Street (London), Canary Wharf (London), Cheapside (London), Nuneaton (Warwickshire), Ashford Town Centre (Kent), Bristol Queens Road (Bristol).Along with the store closures, is the cutting of 40% of roles at its London headquarters - leaving around 400 full-time employees.The Body Shop ambassador programme is also going to close. This is the scheme were individuals sell products for a commission.Administrators say the brand's current portfolio is ''no longer viable'' after ''years of unprofitability''. The restructuring will include a renewed focus on the companies' products, online sales channels and wholesale. 13 February 2024Following the reports this weekend, administrators from FRP Advisory have officially been appointed to ''accelerate the restructuring'' of the UK arm of The Body Shop.Administrators will explore all options going forward for the business.Joint administrators, Tony Wright, Geoff Rowley, and Alastair Massey, will continue to trade the business in administration. 12 February 2024It has been reported this weekend that cosmetics retail chain, The Body Shop, is preparing to appoint administrators from FRP Advisory to its UK arm. This comes just six weeks after the chains new owner, Aurelius, took control.It is understood that the retailer experienced weak trading over the festive period and early January, coupled with having insufficient working capital.In the UK, Body Shop has 200 stores to the along with its headquarters in London -It seems unlikely that the British cosmetics, skin-care and perfume company, set up by the late Anita Roddick, will disappear from our high streets completely.  What is likely, is that there will be a focus on reducing its costs and building up a stronger online presence.  The brand still has appeal for its ethical stance and is popular with younger shoppers. Though the process of administration is being explored for the UK operations, the brands global franchise partners are not affected.In fact, very recently, parts of The Body Shop's businesses across Europe and Asia  have been sold to an unnamed family office - according to Retail Week.Will we see The Body Shop appoint administrators? Will there be a change in owners for the fourth time?It is interesting to see that the company has not opted for a Company Voluntary Arrangement.  This may be due to the fact that its problems do not stem from a number of poorly performing stores (which can be exited in a CVA) but to more widespread difficulties.  It is also likely that the owners have security over the assets of the brand.  If they have security then they can appoint administrators and are first in line for any payouts.This news piece will be kept up to date in accordance to current events. You can find out more on this story from BBC News. 

Read
The Body Shop To Exit Administration With A CVA

Readie Construction Goes Into Administration

Readie Construction which had a turnover of £421m has gone into administration with Begbies Traynor.The administrators put out the following statement “Unfortunately, the Company will cease to trade immediately and the Joint Administrators will begin to wind down its operations with immediate effect. Creditors of the Company are asked to contact Begbies Traynor on readie@btguk.com to register a claim.  “Having just been appointed, we are assessing the situation and further updates will be made as and when it is appropriate.” We believe Readie is too risky to continue trading in administration and therefore the newly appointed administrators have closed the business down.It is highly likely that all employees will leave the business immediately. Also we should add that at least £40m of suppliers and subcontractors bills will go unpaid, hammering many smaller companies in the South East.If you are impacted by this and need a plan to recover, speak to the rescue experts at KSA Group.  Call on the number on the site or email us help@ksagroup.co.uk

Read
Readie Construction Goes Into Administration
v bites logo

VBites Goes Into Administration

in Retail

22 January 2024 New documents reveal that Heather Mills, business founder of the collapsed VBites, has bought the assets from administrators in a rescue deal worth £1m.Only the plant, machinery, stock, IP and social media was included in the deal. The jobs of the 84 staff (64 retained through the administration and 20 let go at the appointing of administrators) was not included.This being said, Mills is believed to have re-employed about 40 staff which may increase as time goes on. The Peterlee and Corby factories remain operational.  12 December 2023 VBites, the vegan food business founded in 1993 by Heather Mills, ex-wife of Sir Paul McCartney, has gone into administration. The company cited higher energy and raw material costs.As vegan product demand increased, the business acquired Redwood Wholefood in 2009, but growing costs and supply concerns hurt it.Ms. Mills was upset by the failure and thanked her team for their "blood, sweat and tears" over 30 years in the industry."This is extremely distressing for me on a personal level but also for my wonderfully loyal and hard-working staff," stated.She said she had poured "tens of millions of pounds into the business" and given "every solution I feasibly could to keep it going, but sadly mine and my staff's efforts have been thwarted".Heather then went on to heavily criticise the meat industry and social media influencers for putting people off vegan food.Vegan food, which costs more than meat or dairy, has suffered as buyers struggle with rising food prices.Beyond Meat, which sells to McDonald's and supermarkets, reported a 33% drop in sales in August. Heck, the sausage producer, cut its meat-free offerings from eleven to two in May. Pret A Manger closed half its vegetarian and vegan-only stores last year.The Vegan Society estimates 700,000 vegans in the UK, and vegetarians like vegan meals.After VBites finance talks failed, Interpath Advisory appointed administrators on Monday.The company has factories in Peterlee, County Durham, and Corby, Northamptonshire.Interpath Advisory said the company will trade from Peterlee while it seeks a buyer for the business and its assets.It stated that 29 Peterlee staff members were being retained to assist with trading.Twenty-five Corby employees are also working for the joint administrators to process existing orders.The company has laid off 24 workers.James Clark, joint administrator and managing director at Interpath Advisory, said: "VBites is one of the UK's leading manufacturers of vegan food products but unfortunately, and in common with many other companies across the food manufacturing sector, had seen trading impacted by rising commodity and energy prices."

Read
VBites Goes Into Administration

Smile Direct Club Goes Bust in the US and UK Services Stop

in Retail

Smile Direct Club in the UK closed months after US Parent filed for bankruptcy (Chapter 11) in the US Court.Best known for selling clear aligners remotely, the company claimed it made the "incredibly difficult decision" to close late Friday.US-based dentistry company offered aligners for £1,800 without a dentist appointment. Established in 2014, the orthodontics startup aimed to disrupt the "bricks-and-mortar" dental sector.Traditional dentists and orthodontists or orthodontic therapists fit "train-track" braces and transparent aligners following an in-person consultation.Smile Direct Club's lower prices and home aligner moulds attracted many clients.Company treatment spans four to six months and includes online check-ins with authorised dentists.On its website, the company claims to have "improved more than two million smiles and lives".However it appears that the sheer level of the companies debts thwarted any rescue plan. Customers in the US, UK, and others are confused because the company states its customer service line will no longer be available, even though they may need aligner check-ins or changes.It advises patients to contact a local dentist to continue therapy.It further outraged clients by announcing that its "lifetime smile guarantee" was no longer valid, but payment plan holders must continue paying.It stated refund information will be provided once bankruptcy progresses and "next steps" are established.On its website, Smile Direct Club apologised for the inconvenience.She noted that liquidators will issue reimbursements. "But customers will be at the back of a long queue of creditors so this is unlikely to amount to much, if anything at all," added.She suggested that UK customers who are still waiting for products and have not cancelled or paid by credit card try to seek their money back under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act.In late September, Smile Direct Club filed for US Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which gave it time to reorganise its debts or sell pieces of the business.However, a last-ditch rescue arrangement failed on Friday.Attorney Spencer Winters told a bankruptcy court judge that its founders' arrangement to supply funds and buy Smile Direct Club out of bankruptcy failed because its most important lender refused.Despite being valued at $8.9bn (£7bn), Fortune magazine said that it filed for bankruptcy with roughly $900m in debt.

Read
Smile Direct Club Goes Bust in the US and UK Services Stop

Related Guides

Related News

Worried Director? We Can Save Or Restructure Your Company!

Call now for free and confidential advice