Client: Key Forensic Services Limited
Area of Law: Litigation
The company operated one of three national forensic licences carrying out forensic services for 37 Police forces. Turnover for the year 31/03/2017 was £15.3m and it employed 261 employees over 3 sites.
The company ran into trouble with an overgrowing debt burden and attempted to expand into foreign markets. Working with Mazars, the need for urgent action was identified and the need to engage with both the board and 3 main lenders and a major shareholder/creditor, who put in several million pounds of his own money, was polarised.
After exploring various options and engaging with the various stakeholders, the business was offered for sale. This was a highly complex negotiation given the stakeholders. It became apparent that cash was very tight and indeed, in late January 2018 it was identified that the company would not be able to pay their wages.
The team advised Mazars and the company on a two-pronged approach, on the one hand pursuing the sale (50 interested parties came forward) and also engaging in an emergency negotiation with the Home Office and various representatives of the Police forces to explore a funding plan should a wind down be required. A wind down funding plan was agreed with the backdrop of a potential huge impact on the Criminal Justice system as there were 2,100 live cases yet to be completed and potential compromise of important evidence underpinning criminal trials.
The team negotiated, not only the wind down and funding agreement with the Home Office and its lawyers, but ultimately a sale to an unconnected purchaser completing on 15/03/2018. 238 jobs were saved and the business has signed contracts with various Police forces to ensure its continued viability. So complex and significant was this deal that it won Corporate Rescue of the Year Award in the national TRI Awards in November 2018.
of the year 2018