I read this on another or another site thread I think,
Jobs at risk as James Brent's hotel chain Suite Hospitality goes into administration
Hotel chain run by former Plymouth Argyle chairman James Brent has collapsed into administration putting more than 100 jobs at risk.
Suite Hospitality Ltd – which had hotels in Exeter, Windsor and Derbyshire - had a “disappointing” year in 2019 and had been in negotiations with major creditors and landlords to find a way for the company to continue, administrators said.
Documents filed at Companies House showed the chain, of which Mr Brent was one of three directors, made losses of £137,557 and £444,613 in 2018 and 2017 respectively and had to take a loan from Mr Brent’s Natatomisam Ltd holding company.
News of the company’s decline comes as Mr Brent has received reserved matters planning consent for a seven-storey, 156-bed “landmark” hotel to be built at Western Gateway, close to Plymouth Argyle’s Home Park stadium.
Mr Brent, who is also planning to build a 1,500-seater ice arena on land right next to the new Argyle grandstand, is also intending to construct a four-storey restaurant and gym block and a new veterinary centre at Western Gateway, just off Outland Road.
Mr Brent is also a director of the Pavilions, which is currently closed due to the coronavirus lockdown. In early 2018 Mr Brent sold the car park at the Pavilions to Vastint, an international real estate organisation, which is planning to put a hotel on it.
The Old Etonian began his career, however, with asset management giant Schroders, becoming its youngest ever director, and leaving after 25 years to become Citigroup’s global head and chairman of real estate and lodging.
He then made his name in hotels, particularly with the Akkeron Group. But in 2014 three hotel firms of which he was a director went into administration and were later liquidated.
Now Suite Hospitality is in the hands of administrators too. It operated three hotels: the Buckerell Lodge Hotel, on Topsham Road, Exeter; the Harte and Garter Hotel, in Windsor; and the Makeney Hall Hotel , Belper, in the Peak District, Derbyshire, all under leases.
Ian Walker, senior partner at insolvency firm Begbies Traynor Group Plc, along with his colleague Julie Palmer, have been appointed administrators of the company by the directors of Suite Hospitality.
Administrators said two of the hotel company’s larger landlords could not agree adequate terms for a restructure and as a result a decision was taken by the board to proceed to administration.
The company employs 110 staff, most of whom are currently being furloughed. The administrators will now try to find a way to transfer operations at as many of the company’s hotels as possible in order to save jobs.
Exeter-based Mr Walker, whose office covers Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and Dorset, said: “We are working very hard to transfer the business to new owners and preserve as many jobs as possible at the three hotels, including Exeter’s Buckerell Lodge.”
A number of customers have paid deposits to the company for future events and the administrators have requested that they should make contact with them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Buckerell Lodge Hotel, Exeter (Image: Buckerell Lodge Hotel website)
A statement on the Buckerell Lodge Hotel website says: "Until such time that we have considered all available options for the Business, we will not be taking any further bookings across any of the Group’s Hotels in Windsor, Belper and Exeter. Any future bookings for rooms, weddings or other events are suspended until further notice."
Buckerell Lodge Hotel described itself as "an elegant building set within historic tree lined gardens and grounds and yet just one mile from the heart of Exeter, providing the perfect combination of peace and country house charm".
Its website said it made "an ideal venue for a wide range of events and formal receptions, for business or for pleasure".
Mr Brent, who stepped down as Argyle chairman in October 2018, is listed as having 29 appointments with firms, by companies house. Some of these, however, are in liquidation or dissolved, or he has resigned.
At the end of June 2020 he will step down as chairman of Hawksmoor Investment Management after 18 months with the company he initially joined as a non-executive director before taking the chair. Mr Brent was praised for his “invaluable contribution” to the £1billion financial consultancy.
Mr Brent’s string of other current directorships include building company Resurgam (West End ) Ltd, Plymouth Pavilions Ltd, and South West Ticketing Solutions.
In 2018, Mr Brent relinquished control of his clothing firm Saltrock Surfwear after it went into administration and was then sold to Crew Clothing Co Group, with five stores, including one in Plymouth, closing.
Mr Brent holds a number of public sector roles too including chairman of the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust.
Taken from Brent Herald William Telford