Shock as construction firm founded in 1947 goes bust

The Nottinghamshire based NMCN engineering and construction giant has gone bust and have entered into administration with Grant Thornton in charge of seeking solutions to the collapsed firm.

It leaves debts of more than £40m, suppliers and contractors wondering if they will get paid along with 1,700 staff out of work.

The ‘people-focused business that works in partnership with their customers to deliver major built environment and critical national infrastructure projects across the UK’ has collapsed having failed to sign off its 2020 accounts and secure a re-financing of the business.

The company said in a statement: “NMCN today announces that the board of the company, having taken advice, has concluded that the company is no longer able to continue trading as a going concern. The board of NMCN wishes to thank all of its shareholders, customers and suppliers for their support over the years and particularly Svella and those who had intended to participate in the equity subscription that formed part of the Proposed Transaction, which has had to be cancelled.”

Ian Carrotte of ICSM said it was cold comfort for firms who had likely been chasing payment for weeks ahead of the collapse. He said: “It doesn’t matter how big or famous a firm is suppliers must never fall for the kudos of household name. If a company fails to pay you on time then you have to make the difficult excuse to cease giving them credit. I suspect NMCN’s demise will also force smaller businesses into liquidation if they are owed substantial amounts of money.”

The firm began life immediately after the Second World War with the name of North Midland Construction and was engaged in rebuilding Britain in the 1950s and 1960s. Hospitals, roads, schools, reservoirs and shopping centres became their stock in trade. Despite the administration it seems likely sections of the group will be sold off by Grant Thornton since much of the business is potentially profitable with pre-tax profits in 2019 of more than seven million pounds and a turnover of £400m.

ICSM believes that if the business can be sold in job lots then most of the workforce could be saved but there would be serious doubts over unpaid invoices to suppliers and contractors.

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