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44 redundant as firm calls in administrators

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AN engineering firm in Dumfries went into administration yesterday with 44 employees made redundant.

‘Cash pressures’ are being blamed for the current problems at Penman MW Ltd, trading as Penman Engineering, in Heathhall – just three years after the company was rescued from near collapse.

It has been in operation since 1869, specialising in the design, construction and software development of armoured military and security vehicles. But this week bosses said the business was now ‘unsustainable’ and Blair Nimmo and James Lumb from KPMG’s Restructuring practice were appointed as joint administrators at the firm, which employs 61 people on a 15 acre site.

In 2017, the company was rescued from a previous administration and the administrators say there was ‘considerable efforts from staff and owners’ since then. However, 44 jobs have now been axed, while 17 members of staff are being retained to assist the administration process.

Commenting, Blair Nimmo, head of restructuring at KPMG UK and joint administrator, said: “Penman Engineering has a long heritage of producing highly specialised armoured vehicles from its base in the south of Scotland. The company’s experienced, knowledgeable team has worked tirelessly to find long-term sustainable solutions, but – regrettably – cashflow challenges have left the owners with no other choice but administration.

“Our focus as administrators will be on assessing what options are available for the business and ensuring clients and impacted staff members are fully supported throughout this difficult process. This includes working closely with Skills Development Scotland, via their PACE team, to support those who have been made redundant.”

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