SALE OF ASSETS, CONTRACTS AND GOODWILL OF A NORTH OF ENGLAND BASED FACILITIES MANAGEMENT COMPANY FOR OVER £850,000
Williams & Partners Ltd was engaged by the Directors of this north of England facilities management company that was made up of three separate limited companies to market and sell the assets, contracts and goodwill of the business on a pre-pack admin basis. The sale was complicated by the fact that the Directors had bought the business from its previous owners based on financial information that turned out to be less than accurate. As a result, it was far more difficult to prepare a detailed Information Memorandum as the financial information that had been prepared to date cold not be relied upon. However, it was our view that we would be unable to undertake a legitimate marketing process without the information and this resulted in the Directors setting aside significant time from their head office staff to produce financial information that the Company had not previously benefitted from before and actually showed that the business was in a worse financial position than had been thought.
In addition to directly contacting competitor businesses, we placed adverts online with two strategic websites for distressed businesses and prepared as detailed an Information Memorandum as possible. Over a period of 3 days we received expressions of interest from 24 separate parties. Further discussions were undertaken with 6 parties which resulted in detailed negotiations, on site meetings with and offers from 4 parties plus an offer from the management team. Due to the nature of the business and the fact that the Company was well known in the area, negotiations were somewhat fraught and required significant diplomacy to ensure that all parties (including all the head office staff) remained professional and focused.
The offers obtained varied in value and came with attached conditions, some of which rendered the offers economically unviable. However, despite a number of third party offers, the management team submitted an offer in line with our valuation report which was at least double the best alternative offer and, as a result of our negotiations with the management team, came with significantly better deferred payment terms and less onerous conditions. A recommendation was made to the nominated Insolvency Practitioner and a sale was concluded immediately on appointment resulting in over 1,200 jobs being saved.
Overall, the sale process from start to finish was completed in 4 working days. Subsequent to the sale process being completed, Williams & Partners assisted the Administrator with a detailed account of our actions in line with the requirements under SIP 16.