FRP Advisory, the restructuring and advisory firm, confirms that the business and accompanying assets of Witney-based furniture manufacturer Corndell Furniture Company has been sold out of administration to Corndell Quality Furniture Limited, a newly formed holding company, ensuring its continuity of trading.
The sale of the business to Corndell Quality secures the jobs of 84 staff employed by the business. The joint administrators had managed to retain more staff during three weeks of administration than had been previously anticipated. Prior to entering administration, the company employed 115 staff out of which 31 staff were made redundant.
FRP Advisory partners, Geoff Rowley and Jason Baker, were appointed joint administrators to Corndell Furniture on 24 June 2014, following a prolonged period of financial pressure whereby the company exhausted both its working capital facilities and credit lines with key suppliers, causing the board of directors to place it into administration.
The sale to Corndell Quality has ensured the security of the business, allowing it to continue to trade as normal under new ownership, from the same premises in Witney, Oxfordshire. The business has a loyal and valued customer base, which comprises 700 outlets in the UK and Ireland.
Throughout the three weeks of administration the joint administrators marketed the business for sale, liaising with over 30 interested parties, resulting in information memoranda being sent to 12 interested parties and numerous parties visiting the company. The sale to Corndell Quality provided the best long term viable solution for the business, safeguarding as many jobs as possible in the process.
Geoff Rowley, partner at FRP Advisory and joint administrator, says: “We are delighted to confirm the sale of the business and assets to Corndell Quality Furniture Limited, safeguarding all 84 jobs retained during an intensive three week administration process. This is great news for the business, staff, the local economy and the wider furniture industry.
"Since our appointment on 24th June it has been possible to continue to trade the business and meet ongoing customer demand. That process has been possible with the support and assistance of the workforce, suppliers and customers for which we are grateful. During the course of the administration we were able to actively market the business for sale and engaged with numerous interested parties.
"We proceeded with an offer from Corndell Quality which is backed by two of the largest suppliers to Corndell. Whilst the suppliers in question suffered their own losses due to the failure of Corndell Furniture, they recognise the underlying value in the business and were keen to invest to take the ongoing business forward. We are aware that key customers and suppliers are supportive of the acquisition which sees the long term future of Corndell secured. We wish Corndell the very best under its new ownership.”
Steve Jackson, director at Corndell Quality, says: “The past two weeks have been challenging but thanks to our loyal staff and supportive retail partners we continue to trade as normal, fulfilling our strong order book. Under new ownership we now have the financial strength and stability to build a stronger and more profitable business. With over 30 years’ experience in the furniture industry Corndell can continue to provide high quality products built on great craftsmanship for its wide range of customers throughout the country.”