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Forrest Group denies administration rumours

North-west contractor Forrest Group has been forced to deny rumours it could be placed in administration after admitting having entered discussions over a refinancing deal.

According to reports in the Bolton News, the contractor has suffered from a number of problem jobs and is in discussions “with several institutions” over a refinancing deal.

Forrest Group is currently working on several schemes in both Manchester and Liverpool, including The Residence for Elliot Group in Salford (pictured)  and the X1 development, also in Salford.

Speaking to Bolton News, Forrest Group’s chief financial officer Keith Reid said: “We are aware that there are a lot of rumours in the market, but at the moment the company is not in administration.

“The company is in the process of trying to secure a refinance deal and if we are unsuccessful there are a number of other viable options that we are working on.”

In its most recent accounts, Forrest Group posted a pre-tax loss of £7m for the year to March 2017, up from £2.2m in 2016. Revenue also fell by 20 per cent from £103.5m the previous year to £82.6m.

The firm’s filing showed that it had £25.8m in assets and £34.7m in liabilities, with new liabilities totalling £8.86m, up from £100,000 the previous year.

Its accounts also detail how the group’s refurbishment business was restructured at a cost of £1m, and that it also took a £3m hit from legacy contracts.

Staff numbers fell from 497 the previous year to 433 as of March 2017.

Forrest secured a finance facility from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority in December 2016 that was finalised in March 2017.

The firm also took out a loan of £500,000 secured against company assets.

The firm’s accounts for the year to March 2018 have not been filed at Companies House. They are due to be submitted by 30 November.

Forrest hired ex Carillion executive Mark Nicholson as its new CEO in September 2017.

Mr Nicholson was responsible for projects across Scotland, the North, Midlands and South-west during his 10-year stint at Carillion.

Forrest Group has been contacted for comment.

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