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Haymills takeover comlete

PUBLISHED: 10:08 21 August 2009 | UPDATED: 21:39 07 July 2010

THOUSANDS of East Anglian tenants are set to see their social homes maintained by a French owned firm following the takeover of a cash-strapped Suffolk construction company.

THOUSANDS of East Anglian tenants are set to see their social homes maintained by a French owned firm following the takeover of a cash-strapped Suffolk construction company.

Officials from Stowmarket-based Haymills confirmed on Thursday that a takeover deal had been completed, which will save around 430 jobs.

Administrators completed a “pre-pack” deal to sell the majority of the Haymills Group to Vinci Construction UK, which is part of a multinational construction giant.

The buy out, which will secure the majority of jobs in East Anglia, includes Haymills Property Solutions, which is responsible for the upkeep of 14,500 social homes in Norfolk and Suffolk for the Flagship Housing Group.

The future of the 98-year-old Haymills Group, which has worked on some of the most high-profile building projects in the region, had been left in balance after its overdraft was suspended by the Royal Bank of Scotland. All payments were frozen and staff and sub-contractors had not been paid for the last two weeks.

Administrators said that the bulk of the Haymills business had been taken over by Vinci, but around 70 jobs had been impacted.

Stephen Oldfield, joint administrator and partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, said: “We are very pleased to announce the sale of the majority of the Haymills group to Vinci Construction UK Limited. The last few days have seen an intensive period of activity as we worked with the group to explore the options available to them.”

“We feel that this represents the best outcome for the business and will ensure the Haymills brand continues to exist and provide this well known East Anglian business with a more secure future.”

The Haymills Group specialises in new build, refurbishment and property maintenance within public and private sectors including education, healthcare, commercial, arts, conservation and residential.

It also has major contracts to repair and maintain thousands of former council houses in the Breckland and Forest Heath areas and Ministry of Defence properties in the region.

David Joyce, managing director of Vinci Construction UK, said: “The acquisition is a significant step in our strategy of consolidating our presence in the sectors of facilities management and maintenance, as well as giving us a presence in the East Anglian region through the contracting side of the Haymills business.”

A spokeswoman for Flagship Housing Group, which owns Peddars Way Housing Association, Kings' Forest Housing and Suffolk Heritage Housing Association, added: “We are very pleased for Haymills and in particular their staff at the news of this acquisition. We look forward to continuing our partnership with them into the future.”

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