Written by: Keith Tully
Reviewed: Wednesday 5th October, 2016
A total of 101 people have been made redundant following the entry of the steel contracting business AIC Steel Limited into administration in recent days.
The company is based in the city of Newport in south Wales and had employed a total of 130 people at locations in the area prior to administrators being appointed on October 4th 2016.
The appointed administrators are David Hill and Huw Powell from the business recovery specialists Begbies Traynor, who have said that just 29 employees are being kept on to assist in the running of AIC Steel while its financial position is analysed, with 101 redundancies already confirmed.
AIC Steel was only created in 2013, when it was established specifically to acquire the business and the assets of Rowecord Engineering Ltd after it had been entered into administration.
The purchase of those assets was completed by AIC Steel in March 2014 but it has now found itself facing an apparently insurmountable series of financial challenges over the course of recent months.
Administrators appointed to AIC Steel have said that they are “currently investigating the viability of continuing trading”, with efforts already being undertaken to try to find a new owner for the south Wales steel business.
The steel industry in the UK and particularly in Wales has been hit by a number bad news stories in recent years with major employers struggling to avoid large-scale job cuts, facility closures and business administrations.
In January 2016, Tata Steel announced that it was cutting its UK workforce by as many as 1,050 people, with 750 jobs lost as a direct result in the Welsh town of Port Talbot.
There was better news in April though with Tata Steel revealing that the sale of several of its British businesses would secure in the region of 4,000 jobs.
Nevertheless, the past few years have been unusually challenging for steel production companies and associated businesses across the UK, with the ready availability of cheap imports from overseas generally given as the key reason for the downturn in activity and profit-making as far as British steel operators have been concerned.