Intangible assets bought by competitor

Surepak admins auction £250k of stock after sale falls through

Surepak's Bielloni laminator is up for sale, alongside around £250,000 of raw material and stock
Surepak's Bielloni laminator is up for sale, alongside around £250,000 of raw material and stock

Stock worth £250,000 is going up for auction tomorrow (12 June) as administrators wind up flexible packaging firm Surepak in the wake of a failed sale process.

The insolvent business, which entered administration in February, will sell off its minor machinery alongside a car, van, and a significant amount of palletised stock, including plastic films and bags.

After 96 expressions of interest, 11 site visits, and two purchase offers for the business as a going concern – the first of which fell through – administrators from PKF Smith Cooper agreed an offer with a second bidder for the 32-year-old business in April 2024.

By May, however, this bidder had also fallen through: administrators Dean Nelson and Nick Lee were forced to halt trading on 10 May, and wind up the business.

“The administrators are disappointed with the ultimate outcome in not securing a sale of the business and assets as a going concern,” PKF Smith Cooper said in a statement.

“However, they would like to wholeheartedly thank the employees for their hard work and dedication, as well as customers for their continued support throughout this difficult process.”

By 4 June, Surepak’s intangible assets had been taken on by longtime competitor Polypouch, based in Hemel Hempstead.

Stephen Frankel, managing director and founder, told Printweek: “Polypouch UK Ltd has acquired various assets, including goodwill, order book, customer base, and the website of Surepak Ltd following their administration. 

“Leveraging over 15 years of expertise in the pouch and print industry, Polypouch’s foundation as a family run business underlines their commitment to delivering seamless transitions, improved services and superior print solutions to all customers.”

Up for sale in the 12 June auction, run by BPI Asset Advisory, are a Bielloni Julia Seconda solventless laminator, an order picker forklift, Mercedes Sprinter van, and a 2022 Kia hatchback car, alongside general warehousing equipment such as racks, pallet trucks, small machinery and the film and plastic stocks.

Andy Cromack, director at BPI, told Printweek: “The bulk of the value is in the raw material and stock – there’s approximately a quarter of a million pounds of stock and raw material there – so it’s a great opportunity for competitors to effectively buy in at a reduced cost. It’s all palletised, a lot of it new and ready to go.”

Cromack added that while BPI would like to see maximum returns for creditors, it was inevitable that the materials would be going up for sale for a much lower price than when originally purchased – in parts, around a fifth of the cost.

“Unless the sale does phenomenally well, which I’m hoping it will, there is obviously a real cost-saving opportunity for people in the industry – that can be helpful, especially in this day and age,” he added.

BPI also negotiated the sale of Surepak’s larger equipment, which included a Comexi F4 eight-colour flexo press, a Comexi SL2 laminator, and a Totani pouch maker.

“These Totanis don’t come to market very often, so we had quite a bit of interest there,” Cormack said.

Lots close at the auction from 11am onwards on 12 June.