Conviviality ‘intends to appoint administrators’

Troubled Crewe-based alcohol wholesaler and distributor Conviviality Plc — which owns Bargain Booze and Wine Rack — said on Thursday it intends to appoint administrators within 10 business days.

Late on Wednesday the firm had said it failed to raise the £125 million it was seeking via an equity placing with institutional investors.

Conviviality said on March 19 CEO Diana Hunter would step down amid a slew of problems including suspension of the firm’s shares following a £30 million tax demand that left it with a “short term funding requirement” and a recent profit warning that sent its shares down 60%.

“Further to the announcement on 28 March 2018, and following discussions with its lending banks, the board has resolved to file notice of intention to appoint administrators to the company,” said Conviviality on Thursday.

“Unless circumstances change, and in accordance with statutory requirements, the board intend to appoint administrators within 10 business days.

“The secured creditors can, however, appoint administrators without the requirement for notice.

“The directors intend to allow the business to continue to trade and the company continues to work alongside advisers in order to preserve as much value as possible for all stakeholders as it explores a number of inbound enquiries regarding a potential sale of all or parts of the business.”