Countrywide Stores latest to go into administration

The Countrywide Country Store in Bearley remains open for business after the company went into administration.

THE Countrywide Country Store in Bearley remains open for business despite the company going into administration.

The store on Snitterfield Road is one of 48 across England and Wales that sell farming, equestrian, harvesting and agricultural supplies.

The company employs approximately 735 people and has its headquarters in Evesham, but is now in the hands of administrators from KPMG.

Earlier this week it was announced that Prezzo on Wood Street in Stratford-upon-Avon town centre and New Look on Bridge Street will close later this year after both companies  announced restructure plans.

The Maplin store on Birmingham Road remains open for now despite the company also going into administration.

KPMG said Countrywide Farmers plc, which runs the Countrywide Country stores, sold its LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) business to DCC Flogas on 1st March, with over 60 employees transferring to the new company.

The company had also identified a purchaser for the retail business, but that was subject to Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) clearance and earlier this week it was announced that the CMA would be investigating the proposals further, forcing the company into administration.

David Pike, partner at KPMG and joint administrator, said: “Following the recent CMA announcement, the proposed retail transaction cannot proceed.

“Unfortunately, given the significant trading difficulties and cash flow pressures, this has led the directors to consider their options and take the difficult decision to place the company into administration.

“It is our intention to seek a purchaser for the business in whole or part and we have appointed Hilco Capital to assist in running the stores whilst we explore and develop available options. We encourage anyone who has an interest to contact us immediately.”