Belfast Telegraph

Bidders express interest in buying Harland and Wolff, administrators confirm

Bidders have expressed an interest in purchasing Harland & Wolff(Liam McBurney/PA)
Bidders have expressed an interest in purchasing Harland & Wolff(Liam McBurney/PA)

A number of potential bidders have expressed an interest in buying Harland and Wolff, administrators have confirmed.

Insolvency experts Brian Murphy and Michael Jennings from business advisory firm BDO are now running the business.

The Belfast Telegraph reported on Wednesday that the majority of the 123 staff have been able to opt for temporary lay-offs, a move which maintains their employment contracts. However, some have already opted for redundancy.

A spokesperson for BDO said on Friday: "In light of insufficient funds to cover the current running costs of the business and in the absence of any other funds being available at this point, in conjunction with Unions, the administrators have agreed to facilitate an unpaid temporary lay-off until Friday 16th August.

"This provides a limited additional time for all parties to pursue any potential opportunity to find a commercial basis to continue the business as a going concern. For a small number of workers, the option of redundancy has been provided and taken up.

"A limited core team of workers has also been retained to maintain the site and facilitate the administrators in carrying out their duties."

The spokesman said a number of interested parties and potential bidders have come forward since the appointment of administrators.

"We are expediently following up on these enquiries in an effort to seek a viable commercial solution," the spokesman added.

"This is our focus and we are working closely with interested parties and stakeholders with the aim of securing a positive outcome.”

The administration does not mean that the business has been mothballed or closed. Instead, the administrators are expected to find out if there's any chance of other work being carried out, or of a buyer being found for the business or some of its assets.

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