Posted on October 4, 2018 by staff

Tech firm hails turnaround after rescue deal


A tech firm founded by the former managing director of The Sun newspaper has hailed its turnaround since it was rescued out of administration earlier this summer.

Andrew Hosking and Simon Bonney from business advisory firm Quantuma were appointed as joint administrators of London-based Chelsea Apps Factory on 12 July 2018.

They subsequently sold the enterprise mobile app developer and digital innovation consultancy in a pre-pack deal, safeguarding the future jobs of all 42 employees.

Before launching Chelsea Apps Factory, Mike Anderson was the man behind the launch of the Metro newspaper in 1999 and enjoyed a 20-year career in print publishing before leaving his high-profile job as managing director of The Sun and News of the World in September 2009.

Anderson launched the firm with just three employees in 2010 before reportedly growing the business to a 70-strong team by 2015.

The business has worked with household names including professional services firm KPMG, Transport for London, Waitrose and Ladbrokes.

But Chelsea Apps Factory experienced “cashflow issues” and was forced to appoint administrators, who subsequently sold the business to CA Factory Limited.

Chris Bishop, who was appointed as business director last month, told BusinessCloud that the sale included the transfer of all employees and stressed that there was no interruption to service, client activity or agreements.

The former CEO of digital media agency 7thingsmedia was brought in to oversee all commercial and marketing activity, and says the company has won “significant” new business activity in September and is optimistic about its future.

“Following new investment into the business a fundamental restructure was required,” Bishop said. “The investment secured provides the necessary funds for future growth for Chelsea Apps Factory.

“With the restructure and investment secured we feel confidently that we have the necessary flexibility and robustness to thrive within our competitive environment.”

According to a report to creditors recently made public on Companies House, Chelsea Apps Factory experienced “cashflow difficulties” in the 12 months leading up to the administration.

These difficulties were “exacerbated by the non-payment of a significant balance by one client”, the report stated.

The documents have also outlined an estimated shortfall to the firm’s creditors, including Barclays Bank, HM Revenue & Customs and a string of trade and expense suppliers.

The report estimates that Barclays will suffer a shortfall of £610,176.95 while HMRC is expected to lose out on £484,363.17.

Meanwhile, a list of more than 40 creditors including tech companies and law firms are likely to lose £494,740.51.