The firm this afternoon appointed Mark Firmin and Howard Smith of accountancy giant KPMG as joint administrators.
A number of redundancies are expected to be confirmed by the administrators and KPMG said it was now looking for a purchaser for the business.
The firm was ranked at number 19 on BB75 – British Baker’s own list of the top 75 high street bakery retailers – and the decision to place the firm into administration was because of the “challenging retail environment”.
The family business is headquartered on a freehold site on Durham’s Dragonville Industrial Estate, where it also has a 50,000sq ft factory. Its most recent accounts indicated the firm had a turnover of more than £12m, on the back of a network of 58 stores, contracts with leading supermarkets, a direct mobile sales operation and 403 employees.
Mark Firmin, KPMG’s northern head of restructuring and joint administrator, told British Baker: “The challenging retail environment on the high street is exacerbated by rising commodity and energy prices squeezing margins in this sector. These factors, along with reduced volumes with its wholesale customers, has led to the failure of this 46-year-old family business.”
For further details on the collapse of the company, see this week’s British Baker.