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Safeguard team saved by administration buyout

J&B Installations Donkeystone Brewery crop
J&B Installations has already completed projects at sites including the Donkeystone Brewery in Greenfield.

Employees and assets of Oldham-based distributor, Safeguard Refrigeration Services, were saved when one of the firm’s management team swooped in to rescue them.

Safeguard entered administration at the end of last year, according to a notice posted on the London Gazette website.

However, Jonathan Kelly, who was Safeguard’s financial operational manager, subsequently set up J&B Installations, which then purchased the distributor’s assets from administration.

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Catering Insight reached out to Ben Ingham, former director of Safeguard, and now operations consultant and project manager at J&B Installations, who detailed: “Unfortunately due to the pandemic we had no alternative to appoint Mike Dillon and Andrew Poxon of Leonard Curtis to be joint administrators of Safeguard Refrigeration Services Limited on 14 December 2021.

“Following the appointment of the administrators, a sale of the business and assets was completed to J&B Installation Group Ltd which has resulted in the preservation of the employment of the company’s six staff.”

Ingham confirmed that Kelly has retained a role overseeing the finance and operations of J&B, as well as being the overall director, while Ingham himself manages the projects side of things.

The firm has already carried out work for the Black Bull pub in Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria; the Colliers Arms in Chadderton; the Simon House Nursery and Pre-School in Oldham; and the Donkeystone Brewery in Greenfield, according to its newly-created LinkedIn profile.

Safeguard Refrigeration Services was first established by Ben’s late father Steve from his family home in Chadderton in 1985.

He was a domestic refrigeration engineer and also covered domestic ovens and microwaves; this allowed him to grow his business working in the public sector, for the council and companies such as Amana and Sub-Zero. With his wife June (Safeguard Group MD) working as his customer service and accountant, the team previously ensured the business was growing year on year.

As online sales grew, Steve decided to move into commercial refrigeration. This involved going into pubs, clubs, cafes, fast food and restaurants to service, repair or supply anything from kitchen refrigeration and walk in coldrooms to air conditioning and catering equipment.

Though he tragically passed away in 2018, he left a strong foundation for June and Ben Ingham to carry on his legacy and morals.

Tags : administrationbusinessbuyoutdealerdistributorj&b installationssafeguard
Clare Nicholls

The author Clare Nicholls

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