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Family buys up failed scaffold firm - again

THE FAMILY behind a north-western scaffolding firm has bought the company out of receivership for the second time in less than three years.

Receivers for Chester-based NSS (Industrial) Ltd said the firm folded earlier this month because of 'an overstated profits book and cash flow problems' Accountants dealing with the scaffolding outfit claim the chances of creditors being paid are 'very slim' But relatives of company director Adrian Butt, acting through a company known as NSS (Special Access) Ltd, have already made what receivers said is 'a substantial offer' for the business.

In 2001 a company called Nationwide Site Services (UK) Plc, also run by Mr Butt, went into receivership before being bought by NSS (Industrial) Ltd for an undisclosed figure. Although full current accounts for the firm are unavailable, 2001 figures for Nationwide Site Services listed a turnover of over £14 million.

Sources close to the firm estimated the company's debts to be in the region of £1.5 million when it ran into financial problems. At the time Mr Butt blamed a troublesome contract for Amec at London's Waterloo station for the firm's plight.

One angry current supplier, who also got caught out in 2001, said: 'It is simply the current legal system that allows them to write off debt in this manner.

'When speaking with employees of NSS we are told that they intend to re-form and continue their ren London's Waterloo station for the firm's plight.

One angry supplier, who also got caught out in 2001, has written to clients of NSS complaining about the firm, claiming that the family intends to re-form the business and continue its relationship with existing clients.'

Gordon Rees from accountancy firm Kay Johnson Gee, which is disposing of the firm on behalf of financier Northland Investments, said the company owes at least £1 million in tax and national insurance alone.

According to KJG, the capitalisation of scaffolding assets in the firm's accounts resulted in overstated profits. NSS said Mr Butt was unavailable for comment.