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News : Irish Last Updated: Jul 20, 2011 - 6:37 AM

SFA condemns Superquinn receivership as "sharp practice"
By Finfacts Team
Jul 19, 2011 - 5:05 PM

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The Director of the Small Firms Association (SFA), Patricia Callan, has condemned the Superquinn receivership as being "sharp practice."

Following the appointment of joint receivers on Monday, the receivers agreed an overnight deal to sell Superquinn to the Cork-headquartered Musgrave Group - -  for details, click link in Related at bottom of page.

Callan commented: “We have been inundated with calls from small food and drink suppliers throughout the country, who are concerned for their future business viability, and the jobs of the staff they employ, as a result of the appointment of receivers to Superquinn. The fact that the Receivership, the proposed sale to Musgrave, and letters to Suppliers stating that the receivers 'have no authority to agree or pay any debts due to suppliers which arose prior to our appointment' have all taken place in 24 hours, demonstrate that this was a well planned process to write off debt, and thus devastate the small business food and drink sector."

The SFA has sought an urgent meeting with the receivers to ensure that an equitable solution is found, which is equally in the interest of the small unsecured creditors, as with the shareholders, banks and other preferential creditors.

Food and Drink Industry Ireland (FDII), the IBEC group that represents the food industry, today reacted to the announcement that receivers have been appointed to Superquinn. The group is seeking immediate clarification from the receiver as to whether trade creditors who are owed up to €100m will be paid in full for goods already provided.

FDII Director Paul Kelly said: "Small, medium and large food and drink manufacturers and suppliers right across Ireland are owed up to €100m from Superquinn. Failure to pay these companies what they are rightly due will have a disastrous effect on the supply chain and affect the immediate viability of many food companies, placing thousands of jobs at risk. Any resolution must benefit all creditors."

FDII has commissioned an immediate economic assessment to quantify the impact on employment and sustainability of creditors within the food industry.

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