Almost 60 jobs have been lost after D&G Food Group called in administrators and put its four bakery companies up for sale.
West of England Bakeries in Plymouth shut its doors after 25 years, making 50 of its staff redundant, while another six jobs were lost when D&G’s head office closed. However, the three other bakeries Aldreds the Baker (Derbyshire), Queen of Hearts (Oxford) and Tredinnick Fine Foods (Devon) are still trading while administrators Milner Boardman & Partners attempt to sell them as going concerns.
D&G Food Group, headed by former Roberts Bakery chairman Graham March and operations director David Fearnley-Brown, acquired the bakeries from Irish group McCambridge last year and announced plans to expand the business’ customer base this year after improving efficiency.
March said the businesses needed a lot of work when they had been bought, but that D&G had run out of time to turn them around. "Many of our suppliers stuck with us for a long time and we are sad we weren’t able to repay their support. It looks like the administrators can save three of the four companies."
He plans to make an offer for Queen of Hearts. Said March: "After all our hard work we don’t want to give it away to other people." Buyers have also reportedly been found for Aldreds and Tredinnick, but no details were available as BB went to press.
Gary Corbett, senior partner at Milner Boardman & Partners, said it had already received plenty of interest from likely buyers and was hopeful of achieving a speedy going concern sale for a significant part of the business. He said: "While regrettably we had to make a number of redundancies, we are hopeful of preserving jobs in the parts of the group that are still trading."
An advert in the Financial Times reported that Queen of Hearts had a turnover of £4m, while West of England Bakeries turned over £2.4m.