Martin Dawes Ltd, which claims to be the UK’s largest independent TV rental company, has undergone a pre-pack administration.

It was put into the hands of Les Ross and David Riley, from the Manchester office of Grant Thornton, before being bought back by the management team, headed by serial entrepreneur Martin Dawes.

The business, which had a turnover last year of £11 million, is based in Warrington but started in Stockport in the early 1970s when demand for colour television began to take off.

As a result of the administration, 89 out of 188 jobs have gone and nine stores are being closed.

The TV rental business will continue to trade and the deal does not affect the other businesses in the Martin Dawes group, including Martin Dawes Solutions, which provides video conferencing facilities in English courts, and Martin Dawes Systems which provides billing for cellular airtime providers.

Riley, one of the joint administrators, said: “The business recently branched out into the TV sales market and has struggled significantly in that area. Historically, Martin Dawes has always been associated with TV rental and this side of the business has remained buoyant. The pre-pack disposal was the best option in these circumstances in terms of saving as many jobs as possible and also maintaining services to the 50,000 rental customers, who, we would like to stress, are completely unaffected by this announcement.”

The management team were advised by Dow Schofield Watts.

Source: Crain’s Manchester Business