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Bathstore moves on TC Bathrooms' remaining stock

Retail chain Bathstore has bought all the remaining stock from tc bathrooms after the distributor ceased trading.

It has also purchased tc bathrooms' Victorian Bathrooms store in Ossett, which will continue to trade under the same name.

Bathstore outbid several other interested parties, including an offer for the company from distributor Mark II which MD Nick Hopkinson claims would have saved most of the jobs.

Hunter Kelly from administrator Ernst and Young, said: "Following the sale of stock - one of the company's most significant assets - the business has ceased to trade and is in the process of being wound down. As a result, it has been necessary to make a further 68 redundancies. The remaining staff are being retained to assist us in winding down the business."

Speaking exclusively to kbbreview, Bathstore CEO Gary Favell stressed that the company has not taken on any outstanding orders placed by customers, but will do everything it can to help retailers affected by the situation. "All we're trying to do is help people," he said. "We've purchased the stock and if we can help anyone who's in trouble with orders we'll be happy to. But we're not distributors and there are no guarantees; we haven't got a balanced portfolio.

"We have no interest in the wider company. We have a very strong brand already and the majority of their bathrooms 4 all stores are actually rented in the postcode of our own outlets. We'll just blend it into our own stock." Favell added that he expects more bathroom casualties to follow in what remain tough times for the wider industry.

"It's more about who's next really," he said. "It's about companies having the liquidity and strength to survive what is a difficult market. It's just a very sad situation and the biggest influencer in all this is the market. But it's gone and we've got to get on with life. Some of the staff have already applied to us."

Rival bidder Nick Hopkinson, MD of Mark II, confirmed that Bathstore had made an offer he couldn't match: "We wanted to buy the stock and the goodwill and name of the business and work with [tc bathrooms chairman] Craig Waddington to keep it going," he said.

"Sadly we didn't have enough money to buy the stock. It's a real shame because we would have saved quite a lot of the jobs." Hopkinson said he had "no idea" what Bathstore might have paid for the stock.

"There was $1.2 million of product on the water and $3.5m of product in the warehouse," he said. "That's $4.7m at cost price. Bathstore won't have paid much for it. It won't be over 50p in the pound. The main value was in the buildings."

Anyone with queries regarding existing orders with tc bathrooms is asked to call Bathstore's sales team on 01924 868383 or email gary.favell@bathstore.com.

Source : KBB Review
www.kbbreview.com/Home/bathstore-swoops-for-tc-stock.htm

26 October 2012

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Thank you for the excellent presentation that you gave at Woodbury Park on Thursday morning. It was very interesting and thought-provoking for our Retail members. The feedback has been excellent.

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