250 jobs axed as Hewden collapses with more at risk

Aaron Morby 2 years ago
Share

Plant hirer Hewden has collapsed into administration with the immediate loss of 251 jobs and hundreds more under threat at the crane division.

Administrator EY seeks buyer for crane business as 250 jobs hang in the balance

The plant hirer called in administrators from Ernst and Young on Tuesday after losing its fight for survival weighed down by a £190m debt pile.

Rival plant hirer A-Plant swooped within hours of the collapse buying three divisions of the Hewden Group for £29m in a deal that will save 133 jobs.

The assets acquired comprise the Hewden name, the powered access and power generation fleet and the Interlift lifting and materials handling business.

Five “on-site” depots servicing major petrochemical customers were also wrapped up in the deal.

But the remaining workforce across the UK faces losing their jobs if a buyer for the crane business and depots cannot be found.

Prior to falling into administration Hewden employed around 750 people out of 40 depots across the country.

A-Plant’s chief executive Sat Dhaiwal said: “This acquisition significantly enhances A-Plant’s offering in the industrial sector where we have been keen to develop our capabilities for some time.

“We are pleased to be taking over a number of important on-site depots at major petrochemical facilities and will ensure that a high level of service is maintained for all customers through the integration process.”

Sam Woodward, EY joint administrator to the business, said: “Management has been attempting to operationally reshape the business to focus on higher margin and quicker returning assets and services.

“However, this has proven challenging with the group’s capital structure and the recent trading environment. Management recently undertook a number of initiatives including approaching new funders and potential acquirers to recapitalise the business, but unfortunately these efforts proved unsuccessful.”

Owned by private equity firm Sun European since 2010, Hewden’s most recent annual accounts, covering the 12-month period to the end of December 2014, show it made a pre-tax loss of £16.6m on sales of £106m.

This was the worst of a string of bad years that included losses of £13m in 2013, £12m in 2012, £3.9m in 2011 and nearly £14m in 2010.

 

Latest plant news

Contractor designs cost-saving long-reach sheet piling rig

Sheet Piling (UK) designed rig to speed-up Smart motorway work
7 days ago

HSS to sell UK Platforms powered access division for £60m

Cash from sale to Nationwide Platforms will help pay down debts
2 months ago

Hirer L Lynch open new plant “Super Centre”

Larger HQ will help hirer accommodate growth plans
4 months ago

Runaway dumper traps worker in trench

HSE warns over site vehicle maintenance after groundworks accident
4 months ago

Balfour bags £115m Network Rail tamping deal

Seven year contract to operate fleet of 13 maintenance vehicles across Anglia and South East
5 months ago

UK’s largest flat-top crane lands at Heathrow Airport

City Lifting modifies crane to up lift capacity for pre-assembled hotel modules
6 months ago

JCB launches electric mini digger

Battery powered mini will operate all day on single charge with zero emissions
6 months ago

JCB creates 600 jobs to meet boom in global demand

New jobs will be spread around Staffordshire and Derbyshire factories
7 months ago

Plantworx moves to Peterborough for 2019 show

Indoor and outdoor facilities of East of England Arena will stop show being blighted by bad weather
7 months ago

JCB starts production of hi viz dumpers

Latest range is designed to improve site safety
8 months ago

JCB boss Bamford bullish about UK economy

Digger giant boosts spending with UK suppliers by 13%
9 months ago

AGD Equipment to supply another rig to piling specialist Ivor King

Latest deal sees RTG machine added to fleet
9 months ago
AGD Equipment Ltd

Vp buys Brandon Hire for £41.6m

Major deal in the tool and equipment rental sector
11 months ago

CITB buys plant simulators to fill operator skills gap

Sixteen plant simulators will help to train next generation of operators
1 year ago

Shake-up of plant training system divides industry

Changes by CITB come under fire from contractors and training specialists
1 year ago

Plant operators get in-cab entertainment

Latest Hyundai loader boasts car-style "infotainment" system
1 year ago

JCB launches Hi-Viz dumper

Machinery giant launches new model in a bid to prevent site accidents
1 year ago

VP bullish about construction prospects after record results

Equipment rental specialist enjoys growth across all sectors
1 year ago

Countdown to largest UK plant show

More than 15,000 people set to visit Leicestershire Plantworx show in early-June
1 year ago

Worker killed by reversing telescopic handler

Tragedy on disorganised site with no segregation between vehicles and workers
1 year ago

Speedy bounces back into the black

Turnaround plan lifts plant hirer into £14m profit after £58m loss in 2016
1 year ago

Contractors keen on new site huts from Mobile Mini

Site accommodation specialist invests £1m in new fleet of Groundhog units
1 year ago

Vp swoops on specialist M&E hirer

Jackson Mechanical Services M&E tool hire arm sold for £3.6m
1 year ago

HSS racks-up £17.4m loss as closures continue

Equipment hire specialist optimistic as branch and distribution network streamlined
1 year ago

Banner Plant expands into Leicestershire

Banner Plant swoops on independent rival Premier to strengthen East Midlands offer
1 year ago

Fairfax buys 80 Hitachi 8t diggers

Selby hirer places biggest order in company's history
1 year ago

Company fined £700,000 for MEWP death fall

Washing machine giant fined after 66-year-old contractor dies during factory repair work
2 years ago

A-Plant snaps up Kier’s hoist business

Kier sheds last of plant and equipment interests
2 years ago

Mick George on the hunt for franchised drivers

Contractor looking for drivers to take on franchises at construction haulage arm
2 years ago

Loxam ups bid for Lavendon to £459m

Belgian and French giants slug it out for control of Leicester-based powered access specialist
2 years ago

Contractor services