Administrators attempting to sell UK's Jaycare

By Kirsty Barnes

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Venture capital, Management

Administrators are now trying to sell Jaycare, a UK custom
manufacturer and supplier of rigid plastic packaging, medical
devices and technical componentry to the pharma and healthcare
industries, which has gone bust.

The firm was placed into administration earlier this month and is now under the joint control of Mark Firmin and David Crawshaw, of KPMG's Restructuring practice in Newcastle. Jaycare is also based nearby this location, in the New York Industrial Park, North Tyneside. Jaycare's staff have been instructed by the administrators not to provide any comment to the media, however, Firmin did provide a statement: "Jaycare is a long established company with a loyal customer base and a skilled workforce. I'm keen to hear from anybody interested in purchasing the business as a going concern",​ he said. In the meantime, the fate of the site and its remaining 200 workers are hanging in the balance. 24 assembly workers at the site were already made redundant in December after the firm suffered the loss of a "major"​ contract that it had relied upon for over 10 years. Jaycare told a local newspaper at the time that the actions were necessary "in order to maintain control of an ever-increasing cost base due to pressures on polymer, energy and transport costs". ​ At the time it was also announced that further job cuts were being mulled over, although it appears this contract loss was the straw that finally broke the company's back, as it was subsequently placed into administration weeks later on 16 January. Jaycare's financial situation has been deteriorating over the past few years. In the financial year of 2005 it reported a profit loss of £426,000. No financial accounts are available beyond this time. The company has also witnessed a several changes in ownership over the same timeframe. It underwent a management buyout in 2000, and in 2004 when profits started diving, it was subsequently purchased by London-based venture capital firm Phoenix Equity Partners for £47m. At the time Phoenix said it was planning to offer an abundance of funding to enable the growth of the business and its profits, although as the company continued to bleed cash, Phoenix bowed out in 2006, and Jaycare was refinanced and restructured, with the company's management once again becoming the majority shareholder, backed by £4m from Allied Irish Bank and HBOS, in a bid to keep the business afloat. Unfortunately though, time has now run out for the firm.

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