Mazars appointed as liquidator of Bournemouth college

Mazars, the international accounting and advisory firm, has been appointed as liquidator of MLS International Ltd. Based in Bournemouth, Dorset, the company, which has traded for 35 years since it was established in 1985, traded as M.L.S. International College.  Catering to overseas students, the Company offered adults a variety of programmes in the English language.  Many courses were for special purposes, such as for the aviation industry.
 
At its height, the company welcomed over 2,000 students from around 40 countries each year to the College.  Its directors estimate that in its 35-year history, the company contributed up to £150m to the local economy. More background information can be found at the company’s website at https://mls-college.co.uk/
 
 
The company had a turnover of some £2.3 million in the year ending March 2019. However, following the global Covid-19 pandemic, the Government enforced the closure of all educational institutions across the UK in March 2020, including the college. This, along with issues around the legality of being able to provide certain specialist training online, meant that the business has been unable to generate revenue since April 2020.
 
The company’s employees were placed on furlough at the beginning of lockdown and the company has faced an uncertain future since, as outside factors both in the UK and abroad have dictated its future.  The company had no control over when other countries would allow their citizens to travel to the UK, the desire of those students to want to travel to the UK, and the UK Government’s control of who can travel to the UK.
 
Recently, the company has been advised of the termination and delay of key aviation industry contracts until at least Spring 2021.  The company was reliant on such contracts for the future of the business and so this meant that the model operated by the business became unviable, as there was no certainty of when profitable trading could recommence. In the meantime, significant costs would be incurred, as the furlough scheme offered by the Government ends.
 
As a result, the Directors decided that the company had to formally cease trading and be placed into Liquidation and the 33 employees were made redundant on 5 August 2020. Tim Ball and Mike Field of Mazars LLP were appointed as Joint Liquidators by the Creditors on 24 September 2020.
 
Mike Field of Mazars LLP said “It is sad to see a company like MLS International Limited fail, as it is a college that has long-established training traditions and is well known in the town, abroad and in the industry. The external factor of the Covid-19 pandemic has severely impacted this business which has, in its most recent year, been profitable. Unfortunately, given the reduction in international air travel, the uncertainty as to when air travel will return to any normality and no guarantee that overseas students would want to travel to the UK to learn English in sufficient numbers for the business to be profitable, the Directors had to make the difficult decision to cease trading and enter Liquidation to prevent the position worsening for creditors.  
 
“Parties interested in acquiring either the business or the company’s assets, should contact Mazars LLP”.

 

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