The architect still anticipates being paid in full by Abu Dhabi government for work on its cultural quarter

Financially troubled architect Austin-Smith:Lord has entered an agreement with its creditors to save it from insolvency.

Austin-Smith: Lord (ASL) is owed £7.85m for work on the Abu Dhabi government’s cultural quarter. In turn, it owes this money to creditors, including Arup, Buro Four, Mouchel and Mott MacDonald, who agreed to delay the payment of the money on the basis they will still receive between 82% and 99% of the money owed to them.

Jennifer Dixon, partner at ASL, said the firm entered a Company Volunary Agreement with creditors on Friday. “We do have a reasonably strong underlying order book and a strong brand. We were able to demonstrate to our CVA supervisor and our creditors that we could stay in business and collect the debt,” she said.

Dixon was hopeful that the full fees would be paid by the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture & Heritage early in the New Year.

Debts from the project did stand at £11.3m but in recent weeks ASL has received payments of £2.4m and £750,000.

Dixon said it was more likely that creditors would get paid the money owed to them if ASL was allowed to continue to trade while negotiating payments from the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture & Heritage.

The firm is still in discussion with a third party about a possible buy-out of the company or the Abu Dhabi project.