Belfast Telegraph

Fifty jobs saved following construction firm buyout

By Clare Weir

Fifty jobs have been saved in Lisburn after a company that went into administration was bought over.

The UK subsidiary of Canadian company Finning International has snapped up McCormick Macnaughton.

The deal has also safeguarded a number of existing and ongoing contracts.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) was appointed administrator to McCormick Macnaughton (NI) following serious financial difficulties in the group in the Republic.

Since that time PwC has managed the business and provided continuity of employment while negotiations were held to rescue the troubled dealership.

Assets and contracts have been sold to Finning International Inc, the UK's main Caterpillar dealer, for a sum in excess of £3m.

Finning International is the world's largest Caterpillar equipment dealer, operating in Canada, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, and the United Kingdom.

Commenting on the deal, Garth Calow from PwC said: "I am delighted that we have reached a successful conclusion to a difficult process, within a demanding timeframe. This has safeguarded jobs and maintained a key construction equipment dealership within Northern Ireland.

"Finning International is one of the world's leading equipment dealerships and will bring its considerable experience to bear on developing and supporting the local market.

"This is a very satisfactory outcome for employees, creditors and for the local economy, particularly given the difficulties facing the construction industry and its suppliers at this time."

Lagan Valley Alliance MLA Trevor Lunn added: "Any news of the safeguarding of posts is very welcome and this announcement is a genuine boost to the local economy.

"This is a very tough time as regards the job market and every effort must be made to maintain existing posts in all companies here as well as to attract new investment into Northern Ireland."

Finning International is also in negotiations with the receiver of McCormick Macnaughton to acquire the Caterpillar dealership in the Republic.