Cheshire-based company Flash Sandersons purchased the business and assets of Sandersons Confectioners, renamed Sandersons UK Limited, for £65,500, securing the jobs.
According to an official report produced by administrator Leonard Curtis, “the economic climate had a significant effect on the business”, which resulted in cashflow difficulties, and pressure from creditors, in particular HM Revenue & Customs. The bakery owed approximately £256,000 to creditors.
Following losses of £14,695 for the year ended 31 May 2013, the business was placed into administration. The administrators sought to find a buyer to take the business on as a going concern and received interest from 18 parties, before a sale was finally agreed with Flash Sandersons – a company unconnected to the original business.
Jonathan Barton, director at Sandersons UK, said that he planned to expand the business with more outlets, product lines and staff.
“I want to move further into foodservice, which is my background, and try to knock on the doors of hotel and restaurant groups. I've taken on six new members in the last four weeks,” he said. “I’ve not bought a business to leave it tinkering along. You put investment into the business to bring new customers and to make it grow. In the new year we’ll open a few more shops.”
Barton added that although locations for expansion have not been decided, he will be looking towards towns and cities for a high footfall.
Founded in 1930, the business expanded and began trading from the village bakery in Mellor Brook, Lancashire in 1949. It then relocated to a 12,000sq ft leasehold premises at Ramsgreave Bakery, Blackburn, in 1984.
Mark Colman, director of Leonard Curtis, said: “The demise of a well-established, traditional East Lancashire business, which has traded since the 1930s, demonstrates the ongoing challenges to the SME market in the north west.
“However, despite the company falling into administration, we were able to secure a successful sale of the business as a going concern, which has resulted in securing 44 jobs in the local community.”
The bakery supplies bread, cakes, pies and pastries to sandwich shops, hotels, schools, hospitals and catering establishments around the north west of England.