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Almost 900 Jobs Saved as Tyneside Companies Rescued


Gateshead-based St James Security Ltd, trading as IPC Security, and sister company Touchline Event Management Ltd have been acquired by contract cleaning company Churchill Contract Services Ltd who are a leading provider of cleaning and other related business services to both the private and public sectors, in a deal that will save 878 jobs, three quarters of them in Tyneside.

Andrew Haslam and Bob Maxwell of Begbies Traynor were appointed as Joint Administrators today (23 July 2010) and immediately negotiated a deal for Harpenden-based Churchill Contract Services Ltd to buy the business and assets of both companies for an undisclosed sum.

St James Security Ltd specialises in security for shopping centres including provision of security guards, mobile patrol vehicles and security technology. Established in 1997, it had a turnover of £13m last year and has worked for Capital Shopping Centres, owner of the Metrocentre, and for several blue chip clients including Marks & Spencers, Sage and Northern Rock. Its sister company provided management, staffing and organisation of major events such as the Great North Run and the Tall Ships Race.

The companies also have offices in East Kilbride, Scotland, and Hersham, Surrey.

Andrew Haslam of Begbies Traynor in Newcastle upon Tyne, said: “This is the best possible outcome in the circumstances – achieving an immediate sale of the businesses as a going concern will safeguard the bulk of the workforce, with only a handful of jobs being lost. In addition, the customer base will receive an ongoing provision of security, experiencing no business interruption with all ongoing and forthcoming contracts being fulfilled.

“It is testimony to the hard work and commitment of all parties involved in the deal that we were able to resolve this situation so quickly after the Tyneside companies ran into funding problems.

“With its base in the South and complementary services also aimed at shopping centres, Churchill Contract Services is an excellent fit. The acquisition will provide cross-selling opportunities as well as enabling it to extend its geographic reach.”


About the author

Gillian Sayburn

Director

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A Chartered Certified Accountant and Licensed Insolvency Practitioner, Gillian has been involved in business rescue recovery and insolvency since 1999.  She began her career with KPMG before joining Begbies Traynor’s head office in Manchester, moving to the Begbies Traynor Nottingham office in 2004 before returning to her native northeast to join the newly opened Newcastle office at the end of 2008.

Gillian was involved in the opening of a further northeast office in Teesside in 2010 and now spends her time between the two offices.

She is also an ACCA Northern Counties Panel member.

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