Administrators have been called in at Eastbourne printing firm Manor Group.
Manor Creative, which trades as Manor Group in Edison Road, has filed a notice of intention to appoint an administrator and all its employees have been laid off.
Managing director Paul Denne said the knock-on effects of his acquisition of a majority stake in Hastings Printing Company last year had ultimately caused insurmountable problems for Manor, and he was devastated at the outcome.
“We genuinely took on Hastings Printing Company to try to save it, but it didn’t work out so we had to close it,” said mr denne.
“And when we closed it various paper companies withdrew credit lines on Hastings and Manor because of the common directorship.
“We had been trading for 42 years and we’ve always paid for our paper on time.”
The firm, which produced this year’s Airbourne programme, had a turnover of around £3.8m and employed just under 40 staff.
In an interview with trade paper Print Week, Nick Hood, a business risk adviser at Opus Business Services Group, said, “Unfortunately, the acquisition of HPC and relocation of that business to Eastbourne destabilised Manor and didn’t solve the problems at HPC.”
The article said some Manor employees have been left in limbo as they were laid off before the administration process was formalised, leaving them unable to lodge a claim with the Redundancy Payments Office.
“We’ll be working hard to sort out the employee claims ASAP now, and to salvage what is left of the business,” said mr Hood.
Mr Denne told Print Week he had no plans to attempt a rescue of the company out of administration.
“If the administrators find a buyer for it, then that would be fantastic,” he said.
“I’ve put the last 12 years into Manor and didn’t plan for it go this way.”