Over 400 jobs saved in Everest windows rescue deal
More than 400 jobs have been saved at double-glazing giant Everest after a rescue deal to secure its future in the face of “incredibly challenging” trading amid the coronavirus crisis.
But 188 jobs were also axed at the windows and doors specialist as part of the so-called pre-pack administration deal that saw the firm call in administrators and then agree a sale immediately to private equity firm Better Capital.
Specialist business advisory firm FRP, which arranged the sale, said 413 jobs were safeguarded at Everest’s 18 distribution centres and two manufacturing sites in Sittingbourne, Kent, and Treherbert, Wales.
The deal has also helped protect the livelihoods of another 600 self-employed associates in sales and installations, according to FRP.
Everest was founded in 1965 and is headquartered in Cuffley, Hertfordshire.
Alastair Massey, a joint administrator and partner at FRP, said: “In the face of incredibly challenging trading conditions in recent months, the business required restructuring to ensure a sustainable future.
“This deal secures a significant number of jobs and personal livelihoods for many affiliated roles.
“Moreover, it achieves continuity for customers who have had their orders and deposits secured by this deal and who the company is now prioritising for service and installation.”
He added FRP was working to support claims for staff impacted by the job losses with the Redundancy Payments Service.
FRP said it had been working with Everest on a restructure after its business was effectively closed amid the Covid-19 lockdown.
But installation operations restarted on June 1 as some of the restrictions were eased.
Better Capital said it invested £3.2 million in the deal.
In a notice about the sale on its website, Everest said that trading would remain on a “limited basis” while it rebuilds its operations, but that trading is expected to return to normal over the next three months.
The firm said: “Up until the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Everest business was trading successfully, covering its costs and enjoyed leading brand awareness.
“Unfortunately, not being able to install our products removed all cashflow from the business limiting its ability to trade through lockdown.”
It said following the deal and lifting of some lockdown restrictions, “current and future customers can be reassured that their orders will be fulfilled as soon as possible and in line with the UK Government’s safe trading guidelines”.