Conviviality officially appoints administrators

Conviviality administration

Embattled off-licence retailer Conviviality has formerly appointed administrators for the business with immediate effect.

It comes a day after the company sold off its Matthew Clark and Bibendum alcohol wholesale division to the C&C Group, the parent company of Magners ciders.

The administrators are Matthew Callaghan, Ian Green and David Baxendale of PwC.

Conviviality said that it was still pursuing a sale of its retail business – which includes 716 shops and 370 franchisees across Bargain Booze and Wine Rack fascias – with interested buyers.

It also clarified that its Conviviality Brands Ltd and Conviviality Plc divisions were in administration, but that other operations in the company were not and were continuing to trade.

“No other companies in the group have had administrators appointed and such other companies continue to trade,” Conviviality said in a statement.

“The company continues to engage with parties interested in its retail business, which trades under the names of Bargain Booze, Bargain Booze Select Convenience, Wine Rack and Central Convenience.”

The company added that all trade creditors of its Conviviality Direct business – of which Matthew Clark and Bibendum is a part – would be “paid in full” as a result of the deal with C&C.

It said the deal “assured” continuity of supply for customers as well as “continuity of employment” for 1900 staff in Conviviality Direct.

This means the future of the remaining 700 staff members across other parts of Conviviality remains uncertain.

The news follows a string of negative press coverage over several profit warnings, surprise tax bills, and the sudden departure of chief executive Diana Hunter.

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