Administrator blames underbidding for Surrey-based Zisman Bowyer and Partner’s demise

A Surrey-based engineer has gone into administration leaving over 70 people out of work

The multi-disciplinary firm Zisman Bowyer and Partners (ZBP) had been trading for over 50 years and employed over 70 staff.

The firm reported a turnover of £5.3m in 2011.

Jill Sandford, director at the Nottingham office of administrators RSM Tenon, said it was “unfortunate” that such a “long standing” firm with a “high reputation” had entered administration.

She said: “ZBP recently lost four significant contracts which would have secured turnover of around £6 million.  The current economic climate, which has significantly affected the construction industry, has seen fierce competition leading to substantially under-priced tenders in order to buy in work.

“Attempts have been made to sell the business as a going concern but unfortunately this has not been successful and this resulted in all employees being made redundant. The administrators will work with the partners and key members of staff to ensure as little disruption possible to the firm’s clients.”

Sandford said that cuts to government capital spending had also been a factor in the decision to enter administration.

David Saffin, the ZBP’s senior partner, said he was “saddened” by the impact the decision would have on staff and their families.

He added: “The partners’ decision to appoint administrators reflects the very difficult trading conditions currently being faced by consultants and contractors alike in the construction industry and the poor outlook for the industry in the near term.”

ZBP provided mechanical and electrical engineering, sustainability and acoustic advice to both public and private sector clients.