Fairline administrators still hopeful of selling business despite loss of 380 jobs

Fairline went into administration last week.
Fairline went into administration last week.

The administrators of struggling Corby and Oundle luxury boat maker Fairline say they are still hopeful of selling the business.

Business advisory firm FRP Advisory was appointed administrator last Monday (December 2) and has managed to retain 69 of the company’s 450 employees.

These staff will help trade the business, service existing orders and liaise with customers, suppliers and boat dealers while engaging with interested parties as part of process to market the business and assets for sale.

The administrators are continuing to liaise with staff, trade unions and their representatives and are now assisting those members of staff who have been made redundant.

And joint administrator Alastair Massey says their focus remains on selling the business.

He said: “Since the appointment of administrators our focus has been on liaising with staff, customers, suppliers and agents to ensure value can be realised from servicing existing orders while we explore options for the business, including marketing it for sale.

“We shall be retaining a core team of staff to help service orders and continue operations where possible.

“We are liaising with staff, trade unions and actively assisting all those members of staff who have regrettably had to lose their jobs and ensuring they make timely claims to the Redundancy Payment Service.

“The business is being marketed for sale and we request interested parties to get in touch – Fairline is a proud brand and has an array of loyal customers.

“The joint administrators would like on behalf of Fairline to thank all involved for their support during this process.”

Trade union Unite say that the loss of about 380 jobs is down to ‘appalling management’, and have urged the administrators to redouble their efforts to find a buyer.

Regional officer Mick Orpin said: “While not unexpected, the news today is a real financial body blow to staff facing a grim Christmas and who will be searching for new employment in the New Year.

“The adverse knock-on effects to the Northamptonshire economy cannot be underestimated.

“Unite is fully committed to helping our members who have been made redundant and assisting them submit their claims to the Redundancy Payments Office.

“It is Unite’s view that the loyal workforce are victims of appalling management ever since private equity firm Wessex Bristol acquired the company from private equity fund Better Capital just over two months ago.

“The workers have been sacrificed on the altar of uncaring capitalism; for example, the firm did not pay the employees’ pension contributions for the last three months, while deducting the contributions from staff pay packets.

“That said, it needs to be recognised that the luxury boats produced by Fairline Boats since 1963 are a top-of-the range premium product that have a viable and sustainable future with good management.

“We urge the administrators to redouble their efforts to find such a buyer for this company – Unite will be liaising with the administrators and leaving no stone unturned to achieve this goal.”