Trouble on three major projects sank Bardsley
Bardsley chairman Roly Bardsley
Problems on three major projects sank Manchester-based contractor Bardsley, which went into administration just before Christmas last year with the loss of more than 200 jobs.
A report by administrator Duff & Phelps – which is handling the affairs of Bardsley Group Limited, Bardsley Construction Limited and Bardsley Construction Holdings Limited – revealed that “contractual issues” on three projects resulted in a £3.2m hit, which led to trading losses of £2.6m in 2018.
That was compounded by slow new work streams in the first half of 2019, when Bardsley turned down several opportunities because of the risk involved. Although it won new tenders in October and November 2019, which strengthened its 2020 order book, those contracts weren’t due to start until the new year, which left a gap in the firm’s cash flow.
Duff & Phelps was brought in in November 2019 to advise the group on its financial position and documents were sent out to potential investors, however no formal offers were received.
After Bardsley entered administration, Duff & Phelps marketed the business and assets for sale and despite a “considerable amount of interest” there was little appetite to buy it as a going concern. It had 11 live contracts at the point of administration with an equity value of £11m. Most of those have still not been terminated, although the sites have been handed back to their owners.
Bardsley Construction Limited – the group’s trading arm – is now expected to be put into voluntary liquidation, while Bardsley Group Limited and Bardsley Construction Holdings are both due to be dissolved.
Bardsley Construction owed a total of £31m to creditors, while Bardsley Construction Holdings owed £11m, and Bardsley Group owed £3m.
The company, which also has an office in Leeds, dates back to 1964 and had turnover in the region of £80m before administration. It built in excess of 2,500 residential properties in the last five years for private and affordable housing providers, student accommodation, mid-rise PRS, plus with elderly care provision.