MP Cunningham Voices Concerns over Asset Stripping at TAG
Alex Cunningham has been assured by bosses that Teesside engineering company, TAG Energy Solutions, is definitely not in administration but that a sale is necessary if it is to begin operating again.
The Stockton North MP spoke with Chief Executive Stuart Oakley, who confirmed that they had engaged the London firm of Duff and Phelps to assist with the sale though acknowledged that the company was facing a difficult situation.
The MP is concerned that if a buyer isn’t found quickly for the assets in Haverton Hill, the site and equipment said to be worth £28 million just three years ago could be sold off cheaply and the potential of the site for jobs lost for years to come.
The workforce was recently paid off and the site mothballed pending its sale, and it is understood there are a number of parties interested in buying it.
“This is a doubly sad day for Teesside – first there was the Tata Steel announcement that they were looking to sell local assets, and now the potential demise of TAG Energy Solutions.
“My understanding is that, in recent years, the company has concentrated almost all his activity on wind farm work at the expense of a more diverse workload including their traditional oil and gas sector areas.
“That, coupled with the change in Government policy and failures to help British companies secure many of the lucrative contracts for offshore wind farms, has put them in a very difficult situation.
“I am aware that the 66 employees on the site were made redundant last month and the facilities mothballed pending a sale – but that there was more than one organisation interested in buying it as a going concern.
“I am aware that the company has yet to repay a debt to a London based finance organisation and that they will be the main beneficiaries of the sale assuming a new buyer can be found.
“My understanding from Mr Oakley is that the company hasn’t yet been placed in administration and there is no intention to do so. I am awaiting a call from the person dealing with the company and want to emphasise to them how critical it is that a working business is sold rather than the assets simply stripped away.
“I have also contacted the company which I believe is the one behind the loan though there was no-one there prepared to speak to me, but a receptionist said someone would call me back.”