Bibby helps secure future of two UK manufacturers

BFS provides new funding line to two manufacturers

  • £5 million of funding provided to manufacturers that faced administration
  • Over 600 jobs saved at Komfort Partitioning Ltd and Cubicle Washroom Systems Ltd
  • Funding helps set growth trajectory for businesses 

Bibby Financial Services (BFS), the UK’s largest independent SME funder, has provided £5 million of invoice financing to help the turnaround of two UK manufacturers. Komfort Partitioning Ltd based in Birmingham and Cubicle Washroom Systems Ltd from New Milton (Hampshire), now benefit from ongoing funding of £4.25 million and £750,000 respectively, following their rescue from administration by Valtegra in December 2015.

Both businesses were formerly part of Laidlaw Interiors and faced administration in December, threatening 607 jobs. They were subsequently bought by investment company Valtegra, which specialises in investing in businesses that are experiencing operational challenges. 

BFS has provided crucial funding that allowed the businesses to survive and move out of administration. The funding also allowed employees to be paid over the Christmas period while their operations were closed.

Following BFS’ funding, both businesses moved into cash positive territory within six days. Cubical Washroom Systems has also reported a 20% growth in year-on-year sales in January while Komfort Partitioning is projecting 40% growth in its 2016 sales. To match this growth target, 50 new jobs at Komfort will be created in the coming months.

Glen Robinson, Partner at Valtegra explained: “As part of our acquisition process, we needed to bring in an ongoing funding provider to ensure that the businesses could continue to trade over the Christmas period and pay their staff.

“At this crucial time Bibby was able to come to the fore and provide the vital funding that both Komfort and Cubicle needed. Working with Jon Dyer and his team, we were able to get the financing in place in 28 days.”

Jon Dyer, Manager - Corporate at Bibby Financial Services commented: “With Valtegra’s purchase almost complete, there was the sudden need for a funder to step in to provide ongoing capital. We were able to provide the necessary funding and get the deal over the line, so that both businesses survived and that employees continued to be paid during the Christmas period while production was halted.

“These two companies are examples of true British manufacturing, so we were proud to ensure their longevity in producing quality goods for the UK market. Now these companies are increasing their headcount and reporting double-digit growth. This is a real turnaround and shows the potential in British manufacturing when they have the right partners.”

Robinson continued: “Contrary to popular opinion, British manufacturing is thriving. There really is still life in the old dog yet. Both of these businesses show that this country can still make tangible goods and products. What is vital though is for businesses to have both responsible owners and financers that can take the pressure off and allow them to thrive.

“Our arrangement with Bibby puts in place a structure where debt risk and equity risk are appropriately allocated, unlocking both businesses to grow and reach their full potential.”

Komfort Partitioning, a manufacturer based in Birmingham, specialises in partitioning and internal glazing and doors and has provided fittings to some of the UK’s most iconic office buildings including the Shard in London. Cubicle Washroom Systems is based in New Milton (Hampshire) and manufactures and supplies washroom and cubical products and solutions.

Posted on 11 February 2016

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