APW UK is looking for a buyer for the second time in under a year. The manufacturer, formerly BICC-Vero and trading as APW Electronics, and which employed 200 people at Chandler's Ford, called in administration group Kroll in January. "We have had over 40 interested parties and 30 of those have gone to a non-disclosure agreement which is the next step", said Andrew Pepper, the administrator at Kroll.
The problems came to a head when cash flow problems followed a cancelled major order last September, which the American-owned business could not recover from.
Prior to this, APW first hit the headlines in 2004 when it axed its pension scheme, resulting in over 1,200 people losing up to 80% of their pension savings.
But enclosure / rack supplies to continue:
However, for the many existing customers worried about continuity of supply, Surtech Distribution has come to the rescue. Surtech has had a long-standing close relationship with APW, which referred the majority of orders below its OEM minimum to Surtech for fulfilment.
Mike Johnson, Surtech Distribution's Sales Director, said: "Many existing Surtech or APW customers have been understandably worried about future security of supplies when APW products are designed in, but there is no need for concern because Surtech has secured future supplies from the companies that have purchased the tooling and IPR of various APW products from the administrators. In the short term, Surtech holds more than £400k of APW stock and will almost certainly be able to satisfy typical orders from stock; the existing Surtech service of configuring racks and subracks to specific requirements continues."