Merchants owed £3.95m by Rok

Published:  27 December, 2010

EXETER: Merchants are among the biggest losers from failed Rok that has total debts of £360m.

Brandon Hire is owed £1.2m, Jewson £2.25m and Wolseley £500 000 by the failed building services company, according to a creditors report by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The £360m figure is far higher than even the most pessimistic estimates at the time of Rok's collapse.

It also said staff are still owed around £6m in wages and other benefits, including one who is £8000 short.

It is still unclear whether the ex-employees – of which nearly 3000 were made redundant – will ever see the money.

Unsecured creditors, mostly made up of subcontractors, are owed around £280m.

PwC was paid an initial £106 236 by Rok before it went into administration, but the total fee for the auditing giant is likely to be far higher when revealed in May next year.

Devon-based Dave Bushby Plant Hire is the latest victim of Rok: the firm was placed in administration following bad debts in the wake of the contractor's demise.

David Kirk of Kirk Hills Insolvency in Barnstaple has been appointed administrator. Kirk said that, despite the directors' best efforts and due to the amount of money owed to them by Rok, they had no other option but to seek expert insolvency advice.

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