Cladding specialist goes into voluntary liquidation following financial problems

Cladding specialist Pluswall Facades has gone into voluntary liquidation after it became the latest firm in the sector to be hit by financial problems.

The £9m turnover company in Woking, Surrey, has worked on a series of high-profile projects, including the CIS tower in Manchester, Heathrow airport and Epsom racecourse in Surrey.

Its demise follows a troubled year for the cladding sector, during which Schmidlin and CAP Aluminium also went into administration.

The directors of Pluswall Facades have blamed the company’s problems on a series of factors, including late payments, onerous retentions and unprofitable contracts inherited from Plus Wall, the company’s predecessor.

In addition Pluswall Facades was hit by a scaffold collapse on a site next to one of its projects, which led to delays to work, and a legal dispute with a client.

Simon Glyn, an accountant with Vantis who is acting as administrator, confirmed that his company had been appointed as liquidator in December. He said that he “did not anticipate any sale of the business”. Eighteen employees have been made redundant.

Pluswall Facades and its predecessor, Plus Wall, have suffered a series of financial setbacks over the past three years.

For the year ended 30 April 2006, Pluswall Facades had a turnover of £8.8m and made a loss of £980,000. The previous year the firm lost £2.3m on a turnover of £2.2m. Plus Wall went into administration in November 2004 before it was rescued by a management buyout, forming Pluswall Facades in early 2005.

Pluswall Facades specialised in the design, manufacture and installation of curtain walling and associated works.

Other projects carried out by the firm included work on the Jubilee Line extension, Ashford international rail station in Kent, and the BT tower and Citibank in London.

It is understood that Pluswall Facades was employed on five contracts at the time of its liquidation, although further details were unavailable as Building went to press. Glyn said it was unlikely that Pluswall Facades would finish its work on the contracts.

He said: “My agent is reviewing the contracts. Due to the company ceasing to trade, it is not anticipated that these contracts will be completed.”