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According to a report in Outdoori, our UK-based news partner, Pertex Product Manager Steve Laycock’s attempt to coordinate a management buyout of Pertex/Perseverance Mills Ltd. has failed leaving only one negotiator at the table showing some interest in the company — Mitsui.
Earlier in July, Laycock sent Outdoori the following communication:
“I see that there are a few comments on various web forums concerning the status/fate of Perseverance/Pertex. Thought I’d give my view (as an employee of the Company).
Perseverance Mills has been trading in receivership since April 8 this year. During this time, the receivers have been looking to trade the business as a going concern. So far no acceptable offers have been received. Two weeks ago it was announced that a structured wind-up would begin and that weaving would cease at the end of June and dyeing/finishing a month later.
At the outset I have made it known to the receivers that I would be interested in buying the Pertex brand and IPR (since I’m brand founder and have been responsible for all the fabric technology). The business model would have design/marketing/sourcing based in the UK and manufacture under license close to the point of sewing. The key for me (assuming success!) is maintaining continuity and the support of customers at trade and consumer level.
In light of the above, it is imperative that PKF act quickly otherwise customers and maybe Pertex could be lost for good.”
For more background on the company and the events that have unfolded, see SNEWSÂ® story, April 13, 2005, “Perseverance Mills, makers of Pertex, files for UK equivalent of Ch. 11 bankruptcy protection.”
SNEWSÂ® View: Our insiders tell us that while Mitsui has shown interest, a deal is far from certain. Already, the Pertex brand is suffering so Mitsui best act soon or it will be too late. In a recent meeting to look at product developments with a large brand that Pertex listed as a key account, we have been told the company has already found a replacement fabric for Pertex as a result of the company’s financial difficulties. IF Mitsui does acquire the Pertex brand, there is no word what it will mean to Pertex’s relationship with Gore in Europe. Mitsui is the same company that has partnered with GE Energy (acquired BHA in 2004) to laminate ePTFE membrane for Event.
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