Celtic Linen ‘confident’ firm can return to profit

The new directors of Celtic Linen have stated they are confident that the business can return to profit following the firm’s exit from examinership.

That is according to new accounts filed by Celtic Linen Ltd which show pre-tax losses at the Co Wexford firm increased three-fold to €1.2m in the 12 months to the end of February last year. Revenues fell 10% to €21.85m.

Amid mounting debts, the firm, which employs over 430 people, went into examinership in September but exited examinership at the end of the year after receiving fresh investment of €1.39m.

The directors state, however, the company is concerned about the high level of over-capacity in the market and the continuing downward pressure on prices.

The company has a 19% market share in the healthcare linen sector and a 15% share of the hospitality linen market.

Causeway Capital through an entity agreed to invest €1.39m into the business. Causeway Capital was established last year by David Raethorne and Matt Scaife, who were previously involved in a number of businesses, including Helix Health and Smiles Dental.

The business based at Drinagh in Co Wexford has been in operation since 1926 and had been supplying bed linen, towelling and table linen to the hotels, as well as scrub suits, patient wear and ward linen to hospitals.

As part of the restructuring, the company exited the workwear, hygiene rental and direct sale business, and made 63 people redundant.

As part of the investment, the remaining members of the board of Celtic Linen resigned last December. At the time of entering examinership, the business had liabilities of €14m and a deficit of liabilities over assets of €2.7m.


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