When a business goes into administration, and it assets are immediately sold to another party, the term used to describe the process is Pre Pack Administration. Pre Pack Administration is designed to allow businesses to continue trading, under new management, after having achieved as much as possible for the former company’s assets, to eliminate the amount of debt that was owed.
To enable a company to get into a position where it can continue trading, Pre Pack Administrations are sometimes used to help the current management buy the assets of the business, in order to set up a new company that is financially stronger. Pre Pack Administration can also be used to get the best price for a company’s assets before the publicity of formal insolvency proceedings has a negative impact on their value.
Using the Pre Pack Administration process to place a company in the hands of new management means that, in most cases, the company can become financially viable again. The proceeds from the sale of the company’s assets are used to settle the debts owed to the former business’s creditors. The new company usually retains all the employees of the old business, who do the same job as they were doing before, it’s simply the management of the company that has changed.
Pre Pack Administration have come in for criticism from some parties, particularly those that are owed money by business that go through the process. They claim that creditors have little or no say in what is agreed as part of a Pre Pack Administration, and it is simply a way for businesses to wipe out all of their debts and continue trading, with the creditors being the ones who lose out. Any deal that is done as part of a Pre Pack Administration leaves creditors with no other choice than to accept the outcome and what it means for them.
The reality is, if a company were to continue through the insolvency proceedings, creditors would probably receive a lot less than they would form a Pre Pack Administration process. Insolvency Practitioners are only likely to recommend a Pre Pack Administration if it is the best way of settling the former company’s debts, while still making sure the new management can continue trading, and keep offering people employment.
The Pre Pack Administration process has always been an option for insolvent businesses, but it has received much more attention recently, simply due to the larger number of failing business who seek to benefit from it. If your business is in trouble, and you feel a Pre Pack Administration may be the solution, make sure you get professional advice as soon as possible.