Belfast Telegraph

Buyer sought for collapsed vaping firm VIP

By Holly Williams

Administrators at a collapsed e-cigarette firm have said they are hopeful that the jobs of 265 workers can be saved.

FRP Advisory has been appointed as administrator to Must Have Limited, which trades as VIP and has 165 retail stores across the UK.

The firm, which is based in Radcliffe, Greater Manchester, will continue trading and all 265 staff will be retained while FRP seeks a buyer for the business.

A spokeswoman for FRP said it was looking for a new buyer and that the jobs of staff were not in danger. It does not have stores in Northern Ireland.

Its US owner, Electronic Cigarettes International Group (ECIG), said Must Have Limited was placed in administration after it was left unable to pay taxes of around $3m (£2.5m) to HM Revenue and Customs.

The group added the administration has also triggered around $104m (£85.3m) of outstanding debt to be "immediately due and payable".

Dan O'Neill, chief executive of ECIG, said: "Financial commitments and Must Have Limited's under-performance prevented the subsidiary from meeting its financial obligations."

Belfast Telegraph