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Rescue managers put faith in factory.

Byline: Peter McCusker

THREE senior managers at a car component company are the new owners after buying it from administration, saving the jobs of 67 people.

Widney Pressings on Scotswood Road, Newcastle, was placed in administration on March 12 with the dramatic drop in demand in the automotive and construction markets.

However, senior managers Andy Wingfield, David Horn and Mark Thornton believe it has a successful future and formed a new company, ADM Pressings, to acquire the business and safeguard the jobs.

Mr Wingfield, managing director of ADM Pressings, said: "Widney Pressings was a highly successful enterprise, but key sectors of the company's business were severely affected by the economic downturn.

"Some of Widney's sister companies were hit much harder than we were but Pressings was identified as potentially having significant future viability based on supplying aftermarket and original equipment products to the automotive and construction industries."

The original company was formed out of Vickers Engineering and originated from the Vickers tool shop established in 1956.

The company was subsequently owned by Rolls-Royce and in 2005 it was bought from administration for pounds 2.3m by Birmingham company Widney.

Before the downturn it had an average annual turnover of pounds 14m supplying original equipment and aftermarket services to the likes of Unipart (Jaguar), Land Rover, GKN, Bentley, JCB and Caterpillar.

The deal was financed with a pounds 90,000 grant for business investment from One North East and funding from Barclays Bank with support from Newcastle law firm Muckle and Tait Walker Corporate Finance. ONE director of business and industry Ian Williams said: "To save 67 manufacturing jobs and ensure the future of a longstanding company with a strong, respected presence in the region is a significant achievement for all parties involved."

Mr Wingfield said: "The collaborative support that ADM received from One North East, Barclays Commercial Bank, Muckle and Tait Walker was crucial and ensured a viable business was saved and prevented from suffering a catastrophic collapse."

Steve Plaskitt, of Tait Walker, said: "We are delighted that Andy and the team were able to complete the job and secure 67 jobs for the company.

Craig Swinhoe, who led a team of five lawyers at Muckle, said: "We are delighted to have played an important role in a securing the future of a historic North East manufacturer as well as supporting an excellent management team."

CAPTION(S):

COLLABORATION ADM Pressings MD Andy Wingfield, centre front, with, from left, Craig Swinhoe, Muckle; Steve Plaskitt, Tait Walker; Mark Thornton, finance director of ADM; Catherine Elrington, ONE; Peter Kirkpatrick, Barclays Commercial Bank; and David Horn, operations director of ADM.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Mar 27, 2009
Words:436
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