Quantuma selected for Greswolde Construction administration

24 August 2022 Consultancy.uk 2 min. read

Greswolde Construction has appointed administrators from Quantuma. The company reportedly faced ‘unprecedented’ trading conditions over the last couple of years due to the global pandemic

Established in 1983 and headquartered in Solihull, Greswolde specialised in new build, design and build, refurbishments and fit-outs. Its collapse comes one year after new investors took over the running of the firm.

In August 2022, construction engineer Perry Stewart and former PwC professional Shaun Walsh invested in the business, as former owner Malcolm Priest stepped away. Priest had run the business since 1995, but said at the time he felt the business needed to depend less on him, and “that the time was right to build a larger, stronger senior team to take the business to the next level.”

Malcolm Priest, William Senior, Perry Stewart and Shaun Walsh

Stewart meanwhile stated that he and Walsh had invested in a company with “immense” potential, adding that if turnover did not double in three years, “I’ll eat my hat!” While the company’s latest accounts reported a turnover of £19.4 million, it seems those ambitions will go unfulfilled – as the business has appointed administrators.

24 jobs were axed, as control of the company was handed to professionals from Quantuma. Quantuma Managing Directors Nick Simmonds and Chris Newell will initially work to provide support to the employees to enable them to make any necessary redundancy claims, before Quantuma will also work with Greswolde’s management team and clients for an “orderly” handover of incomplete projects, to allow them to be progressed and completed by industry peers.

Simmonds noted, “Its customers have been substantially disrupted by unpredictable economic conditions and the business has experienced severe supply chain challenges. Having exhausted all options for the business, it is with deep regret that this business is no longer able to continue to trade and has ceased to operate with immediate effect. Our role as administrators will be to maximise recoveries and realisations to make a distribution to Greswolde’s secured or preferential creditors.”

The construction sector is often the first part of the economy to be acutely impacted by a downturn. As pressure from soaring costs and higher interest rates hits the UK, construction firms have seen activity in the sector decline for the first time since January 2021 due to, according to new figures – something which may see many more firms struggling to bounce back from the pandemic go the same way as Greswolde Construction.

S&P Global Market Intelligence found that the overall decline in construction activity in Britain was partly driven by the worst performance by civil engineering firms for almost two years. Elsewhere, housebuilding fell for the second consecutive month, although it stayed at a similar level of decline as seen in June 2022.