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Sella Furniture Group falls into administration with loss of 19 jobs in Dundee

Friday 29 June 2012

The privately-owned firm — which has its headquarters in Bury, Lancashire and a factory at Gourdie Industrial Estate, Dundee — failed on Wednesday after suffering insurmountable financial difficulties.
Manchester corporate insolvency experts Bridgestones were called in to oversee the administration and the Dundee and Bury facilities were shut down with immediate effect.
Thirty-three employees across the two group sites lost their jobs.
The company produced several ranges of office furniure including desks, storage and seating products and also provided a planning service to map out customer requirements for new office suites.
The manufacturing process at Dundee involved computer-aided design techniques and machining on a CNC router.
Bridgestones managing partner Robert Cooksey confirmed the administration and said efforts are under way to find a buyer for the business.
Representatives of the company travelled to Dundee on Wednesday to visit the factory site, which is now standing silent behind a padlocked metal fence.
A statement released to The Courier on Thursday said: ''Robert Cooksey and Johnathan Lord were appointed joint administrators of Sella Office Furniture and Seating Limited on June 27, 2012, by the debenture holder Equip4Work Ltd.
''We are currently exploring all options with regards to the sale or disposal of the business.''
Unaudited abbreviated accounts for Sella signed by director Francis Duffy show a loss of £206,558 for the trading period ending August 31 last year.
Total assets less current liabilities were £186,462, but the accounts noted a debenture dated March 21, 2011.
The debenture related to a sum of £338,020 which was said to ''fall due'' after more than one year and meant overall net liabilities for the company in the red to the tune of £151,558.
One former employee of Sella in Dundee — who asked not to be named — told The Courier the company had picked up a string of smaller orders in recent weeks but could not fulfil them.
The worker described the lay-offs as ''ridiculous'', saying: ''The company couldn't cut materials we had in our factory because we hadn't paid for them yet because we hadn't had money from someone else.''
Dundee West Joe FitzPatrick MSP said he would be raising the situation with enterprise minister Fergus Ewing.
He said: ''I am concerned to hear of 19 employees losing their jobs as a result of Sella Office Furniture going into administration.
''Given the information that the company locally seemed to be thriving with orders for manufacturing office furniture, I will be writing to the Minister for Enterprise Fergus Ewing to ask him to look into the circumstances of this company's collapse.'

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