One of the UK’s largest solar-panel installers has called in the administrators after struggling with financial problems. The Group blames the government’s change in energy policy as the reason for the company’s losses, stressing the business is now unviable.
Earlier this year, the government stopped the Green Deal as well as cut a large proportion of financial support for business and home solar panel installations.
939 employees have been made redundant since Deloitte were appointed on Wednesday. 200 more staff are at risk of losing their jobs if a buyer can’t be found in time.
Joint administrators, Chris Farrington, Matt Cowlishaw and William Dawson will manage the business and consider all available options. The insulation department will continue running for the time being while the administrators look for a buyer. In light of the changes, the business is keen to focus on other green energy technology.
The uncertain future of certain green schemes, including the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) and the lack of new customers had caused the Group to restructure, recently selling its solar division to US company, SunEdison. However SunEdison’s UK operations have also suffered in the last few months, resulting in a sale of the division back to The Mark Group.
A spokesperson from SunEdison said in a statement:
“We acquired Mark Group in July 2015. With over four decades of experience in energy efficiency installations, Mark Group was a highly regarded company with a proven track record, but had suffered as a result of recent legislative changes in energy efficiency policy. SunEdison took on the challenge of turning the business around by leveraging the company’s installation experience in the solar PV market. We are extremely disappointed that the draconian policy proposals made by the government in August will essentially eliminate the solar PV market in the UK and have made our plan unviable. As a result, we have decided to sell Mark Group to its managers, who have informed us that in light of the elimination of the solar PV market they will re-focus on energy efficiency.”
It is hoped a buyer will come forward soon. All appointments for installations and surveys have been cancelled while customers will be contacted in due course. Customers can also call a dedicated phone line: 0800 633 5036. Suppliers will be contacted directly.
Update: 08/10/2015 – The clean energy firm, Climate Energy, has also entered administration. Chad Griffin and Simon Kirkhope from FTI Consulting LLP have been appointed joint administrators. They will be in touch with homeowners and sub contractors regarding the situation in due course. While there are reports of talks with a third party looking to buy the business, it appears most staff will be made redundant.
If you are an employee of the business, please listen to the video below as it will tell you your rights as an employee of an insolvent business. There is a link at the end of the video to the Government website which expands further on what you need to know.