Shifting work practices and the squeeze on government spending have forced the closure of Ministry of Furniture, resulting in the loss of 25 jobs.
The business, which commenced trading in 2013 after the closure of the Remploy Furniture Factory in Neath, was awarded SME of the Year at the Constructing Excellence in Wales (CEW) Awards 2023. It had specialised in contract furniture supply; remanufacturing; and interior design and installation to mostly public sector workplace and education organisations, before being adversely affected by the pandemic and public sector funding cuts.
The company’s directors are currently liaising with business rescue and restructuring specialists Begbies Traynor Group, who will be assisting with placing the company into Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation shortly.
Huw Powell, Partner at Begbies Traynor’s Cardiff office, said:
“Ministry of Furniture had managed to retain its original social aims while trading profitably between 2012 and 2021.
“However, in recent years it has experienced a reduction in turnover as the switch to home working prompted a reduction in public sector spending on projects, as well as increased costs. Despite securing additional borrowing and some significant orders for 2024, efforts by the directors to turn the business around have unfortunately proven unsuccessful.
“We are now working closely with our partners at agents Eddisons Commercial, who will be managing the sale of the company’s assets and brand to ensure the best possible return for its creditors.”
The Ministry of Furniture directors added:
“It is an extremely difficult situation, and we truly wish we had been able to achieve a different outcome for our immensely dedicated team and customers.
“The reality is that the business could no longer continue, and we were left without any choice but to close. As a management team, we’re doing everything possible to support colleagues through this challenging time.”
Ministry of Furniture was based at Milland Road Industrial Estate in Neath and Swansea Valley Business Park in Ystalyfera. General creditor enquiries should be directed to [email protected].