Meet Jeremy Harding-Edgar of Eclipse Consultancy (Chartered Accountants and Business Advisors).
Jeremy is a partner at Eclipse Consultancy, a Chartered Accountancy practice based in Beckenham, Kent that offers companies of all sizes a range of accountancy and business advisory services
I first met Paul and Tom when they arrived at our office in Beckenham in the middle of a rainstorm. They had just set up in business and had taken to heart Norman Tebbits advice to get on your bike to look for work. At that stage they couldn’t afford a bike so, while they hitched their horses to the rail we put on the coffee and invited them in to dry off and to explain what they wanted to achieve.
It is not often that you come across door to door insolvency salesmen and we were immediately impressed by their enthusiasm and friendliness as well as their capacity to demolish a packet of chocolate biscuits.
Q – What made you choose Bailey Ahmad for your Client
We have used Bailey Ahmad on several occasions since. While it is important that the Insolvency practitioner is professional and explains the legal requirements clearly, this is often a traumatic time for Business owners and a degree of calmness and empathy is very important in ensuring that the Client understands the alternatives and is able to make a reasoned decision.
Q – What prompted you call to Bailey Ahmad
Two years ago we were asked by a contact to draw up a business plan for a company run by old friends and in which she was considering investing. Our early research revealed that the business, although a leader in its field of design, had been poorly managed and had a long history of failure. The Company was again in severe financial difficulties and to have committed more equity to the existing structure would have led to the loss of the money and probably the friendship.
Q – What did company hope to achieve
As Paul Bailey explained to the investor, the only sensible way forward was to start a new Company and acquire the assets of the business. This was more complicated as the ownership of some of the assets and Intellectual Property had become confused due to past reorganisations and there were issues regarding possible redundancy payments to long serving staff as well as valuation issues.
Q – What were clients first impressions of Bailey Ahmad
Although this situation was not new to the existing owners it was clear that they only had a sketchy idea of the real legal requirements of running a business and of the liquidation process. There were lots of questions to be answered and little time to act and something of a feeling of panic . However Paul was both firm and fair in explaining the situation to them.
Q – What was Bailey Ahmads assessment of situation
Bailey Ahmad realised that it was important to secure the physical custody of the major asset and introduced a valuer who could set a fair price for the assets. The history of past liquidations had to be assessed so that the ownership of the various assets could be determined and rights of the staff had to be assessed.
Given the history of failure and both legal advice (again introduced by Bailey Ahmad) and commercial sense made it clear that the previous Directors could not continue to be in charge of the business .This was a particularly sensitive issue but one that had to be addressed if the Business was to have a viable future. All of this had to be achieved within a tight time-scale and against the backdrop of a time of year when new designs would have to be developed for the next season.
Q – Was there any aspect of the service that particularly impressed
All of this was achieved quickly and efficiently with practical guidance from Bailey Ahmad. In particular the rights of the former employees was difficult to determine and their claims for redundancy pay, having been initially rejected by the Government were pursued with tenacity by BA who ensured that compensation was eventually forthcoming.
Q – Would you use again
Of course we all hope that we never have to use Bailey Ahmads services again but, given economic vagaries and the statistical realities facing small businesses, it would be optimistic to suppose that we would not need to do so.
Bailey Ahmads calm, authoritative and practical approach makes what is often a traumatic event less difficult. I have and would recommend them to others just remember to keep the lid on the biscuit tin.
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Get in touch with Eclipse
Tel: 020 8663 3338