Date Published: 12th May 2016
Following the administration of HMC Health & Beauty on 4 May 2016, joint administrators Julian Pitts and Bob Maxwell of Begbies Traynor in Leeds have secured the sale of the business which has a 110-strong workforce.
Established in 2000, HMC Health & Beauty is based at a 42,000sq ft facility in Thetford, Norfolk. The business developed from a contract manufacturing operation to offer a full service facility to brand owners across a broad range of toiletries and personal care products.
During 2013 the company lost a single, but significant customer after it was acquired by a competitor. Whilst turnover was being rebuilt with new customers, consequential trading losses were sustained.
Ultimately, and despite cash injections by shareholders, these losses, compounded by constraints on the company’s banking facilities, creditor pressure and, more recently, the company’s first material bad debt, resulted in a severe cash flow issue. This led to HMC Health & Beauty appointing Begbies Traynor, the business rescue and recovery firm, to advise it. Begbies Traynor was able to undertake an accelerated marketing exercise prior to the administration which resulted in a pre-pack sale to an unconnected third party.
The business and assets of HMC Health & Beauty have been acquired by a new company, Prestige Personal Care Ltd, whose directors have a number of other complementary businesses in the cosmetics and toiletries sector.
“It is very good news that HMC Health & Beauty has been acquired as a going concern by a purchaser with a strong track record in the sector,” explains joint administrator Julian Pitts. “Not only does it mean that the business will continue to trade, safeguarding the livelihoods of the staff, but it also puts it on a more secure footing for the future.”
Following graduation from the University of Hull, Julian qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Coopers & Lybrand in Leeds. After a short time with Baker Tilly, in 1989, together with David Wilson, he established Wilson Pitts, a specialist independent practice dealing with all aspects of insolvency and corporate recovery work. In 2006, the Wilson Pitts practice was acquired by Begbies Traynor where Julian is now the Joint Regional Managing Partner for the North-East region.