90 year-old door to door homeware business fails

A national catalogue and door to door home products business with 5,000 distributors across the UK has collapsed with debts to HM Revenue and Customs, resulting in nearly 100 job losses.

Thousands of door to door agents, including hundreds based in Yorkshire, also stand to lose their income after the failure of what was once one of the UK’s most successful shopping companies.

Founded in 1928 and originally based in Romford, Essex, Betterware Limited relocated to Birmingham in the 1980s.  It became a household name best known for home storage and personal care products, as well as mobility aids, and was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1986 becoming one of the best performing shares of the early 1990s.  In 2015 it was bought by Texas-based consumer sales group JRJR and, at that time, had a turnover of £22m.

Providing an extensive range of homeware and cleaning products including gifts, personal care, mobility and beauty, as well as outdoor and electrical products, the Betterware catalogue was marketed through teams of thousands of distributors to homes throughout the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

The company was placed into the hands of joint administrators Gareth Rusling and Claire Dowson of Begbies Traynor on 13 April 2018.

Over the last nine months, the company has suffered from tough trading conditions leading to cashflow problems which resulted in it being placed into administration.  It has now ceased trading with all 94 staff having been made redundant.

Joint administrator Claire Dowson said: “It is very sad to see the demise of such a long-established business.  Our aim was, of course, to find a purchaser for the business as a going concern in order to safeguard the jobs, but unfortunately, despite our efforts, this did not prove possible.

“We are now in the process of realising what assets we can in order to achieve the best possible returns for creditors.”

Any parties interested in acquiring assets of the company should contact the joint administrators as soon as possible.

Betterware Ltd is a sister company of Kleeneze Limited which was placed into administration on 12 April 2018.

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