The retail operation of Greenock bakers Aulds has gone into liquidation as part of a group turnaround plan.
The company said its 26 stores across Scotland would continue to trade while liquidators assess the situation with a view to selling all or some of the shops in order to save as many jobs as possible.
Around 180 employees are affected. Aulds has a number of branches in Greenock, Gourock and Port Glasgow.
Aulds bakery products will be available as normal in 50 Scotmid stores throughout Scotland, as well as from other independent outlets where they are currently sold.
A statement form the company explained:
“Like many high street businesses, we’ve found trading extremely tough in recent years, with pressure from high street and supermarket competition, as well as increasing ingredient, distribution and wage costs.
“All of this has meant the retail business has been making a loss which we can no longer sustain.
“We have spent several months trying to find alternative options but unfortunately this is the only way of protecting as many jobs as possible.
“This decision will ensure the brand’s survival and safeguard 200 jobs across our two other subsidiary companies, Aulds Bakeries Limited, which manufactures fresh and frozen bakery products at our Greenock site , and Aulds Delicious Desserts, which has a manufacturing facility at Inchinnan.
“We appreciate this is a very distressing time for many of our colleagues and customers.”
The family-owned bakery’s retail business is said to be in an “unsustainable loss-making position” due to pressure from competitors and increasing ingredient, wage and distribution costs.
Aulds currently has 26 shops employing 180 staff and liquidators are assessing the viability of selling all or some of the stores as a going concern in a bid to safeguard jobs.
Paul Dounis and Steve Ross of RSM Restructuring Advisory were appointed joint liquidators for the retail arm on Thursday.
Picture courtesy of George Munro and the Greenock Telegraph.