Feeds

Plasmon UK goes into administration

Redundancies en route to a takeover

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Plasmon has placed its UK and Europe operation in administration as it negotiates with an investor who it hopes will refinance and take over its core archive business.

Plasmon has said that staff from Kroll's Corporate Advisory and Restructuring Group were appointed as Joint Administrators on Monday, 6 October.

There are, in effect, two parts of Plasmon: Plasmon Inc, the US operation, which a subsidiary of Plasmon Ltd, the original UK operation. There are several business units involved in Plasmon Ltd., for example in CD and DVD mastering in France, and in UDO media research in Cambridge.

A person familiar with the situation said that about a third of Plasmon Ltd's staff were made redundant. The software and UDO media teams have been hardest hit. They were judged unimportant compared to the core archive business, and are being closed down during ongoing negotiations with the (presumably) US firm interested in taking over the parts of Plasmon it wants.

Plasmon's statement said the Administrators: "are continuing to trade the Company's UK and European sales and marketing division alongside the continuing operation of the Company's US subsidiary, Plasmon Inc. This enables the ongoing sale and support of Plasmon products worldwide whilst a going concern sale of the business is explored. The Administrators are presently in discussions with a number of interested parties and are hopeful that a sale of the remaining business can be achieved in a relatively short time frame."

This sounds like the Administrators are in control but, in essence, its Plasmon CEO Steve Murphy's team who are doing the negotiations with the, potential investor and telling the administrators what they can and can't use from Plasmon Ltd, the overall parent company. The prospects of the administrators realising any value at all from the unwanted parts of the business are remote.

They in fact believe that there is unlikely to be any value realised at all for Plasmon shareholders. That means Hanover Investment Partners, Amvescap and the other investors have lost their shirts as the US investor gets the core archiving business for nothing, except a large slug of funding needed for product development and working capital, thought to be in the $20 million area.

Investors losing out include BT Pension Scheme Trustees and Royal Mail Pensions Trustees, which will be unwelcome news for their pensioners and savers.

Another person close to events says the administration process is not surprising, it just being part of the process by which a viable Plasmon archiving business can be created. This process could even complete in just a few days time.

Plasmon's own UDO optical media format's generational roadmap may now be limited in scope if UDO media research is disbanded.

According to sources, the remaining Plasmon Ltd. staff are clinging on from week to week waiting to see if they will be needed in the new Plasmon.

Watching a viable business trying to emerge from amidst the ravaged remains of an old one under the pressure of dramatic financial events is not a pretty sight. It is amazing, reassuring even, that rescue and refinancing talks are ongoing at all. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
FLAPE – the next BIG THING in storage
Find cold data with flash, transmit it from tape
Seagate chances ARM with NAS boxes for the SOHO crowd
There's an Atom-powered offering, too
Gartner: To the right, to the right – biz sync firms who've won in a box to the right...
Magic quadrant: Top marks for, er, completeness of vision, EMC
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.