Sofas and beds manufacturer Maker&Son has shared an update on its current position as it ‘stabilises’ following its administration and rescue sale.
Inc & Co Group acquired Maker&Son back in August 2022 in a share purchase deal. The Group had paid down large debts as well as supporting cash flow to support the business, restart manufacturing and fulfil all customers orders.
A strategic financial plan was put in place by the board to manage creditors over a short period of time, however one creditor has not been onboard with its plan, despite “our full commitment to fulfil all creditor obligations, including customer refunds, within a reasonable period, and therefore they placed the company into administration”.
“Although this has forced a re-structure of the business, we are extremely confident in the future of Maker&Son and are fully committed to the brand,” a statement said. “This new change will not affect customers’ orders or our manufacturers, with jobs saved and no plans for redundancies; we’re excited for the new growth potential in the business with full support from all the team.
“However, things did change as a result of the administrators when they moved from administration to the liquidation of Maker&Son Ltd/MSOLD1 and winning a case to reverse TUPE along with the transfer of assets from Maker&Son Ltd/MSOLD1 to Maker&Son Ops Ltd. Despite the judge’s willingness to put TUPE to one side, the liquidators insisted on the reversal and then made all staff redundant with immediate effect.
“New contracts were given to the majority of staff, however not all, and we are currently working with the liquidators to establish which assets in fact belong to the new company (Ops). The liquidators took control of the distribution centre which caused disruption to a small number of customer orders which were being stored or held ready for delivery. We are in touch with these customers to keep them updated on the release of furniture from the liquidators.”
In addition, Maker&Son, recently published another statement online and launched a page on its website to help bring customers up to date on the current state of play and offer as much transparency for how the financial situation, acquisition, administration, and subsequent liquidation of Maker&Son Ltd/MSOLD1, may affect them.
Commenting on the process so far, Maker&Son added: “It has been very difficult to communicate with customers to provide clarity with the landscape of the business changing and evolving from week to week. However, we feel as we have turned a corner on recent events, we are in a much stronger position as we prepare to head into a new year with exciting plans to grow the brand in a more financially viable way.
“We are currently working on stability for the brand in the UK, continuing to serve the many new customers we have welcomed, as well as fulfilling the orders promised under the previous ownership of the brand. There will, of course, be significant delays to what had been promised by the company that previously owned the brand – however, the new company (Maker&Son Ops Ltd) with the rights to use the global Brand and IP, are absolutely committed to fulfilling these orders at their own cost as we continue to trade. Sadly, there has been a lot of inaccurate information circulating and tensions have been running extremely high.”
The business confirmed that there are no delays to new orders in the UK, which is being monitored regularly, while operations in its US division has temporarily ceased to trade as it focuses on stabilising the UK business. Plans are afoot on a separate strategy to relaunch Maker&Son US in the future.
“The support we have received from many wonderful customers across the UK and the world during this difficult time has been incredible and we want to thank you for your enduring patience and understanding. We are incredibly grateful and we cannot wait to share exciting future plans with you as we start to turn the corner and move forward,” the statement continued.
“Our brand and our mission will remain unchanged as we continue to share with the world our passion for natural, incredibly comfortable and beautiful furniture that is designed to support your sense of well-being. We are not changing the way we make our furniture and we are working with the same makers and local manufacturers as always.
“Finally, we’d like to pay tribute to our Maker&Son Colleagues – past and present. It has been inspiring to witness your resilience, dedication and love for the brand during this time of transition.”
Maker&Son is encouraging anyone who has been affected or has any questions to contact them. More information on its dedicated help page can be found here.