MORE than 300 jobs – including a number in Huddersfield – have been saved with the takeover of a fashion jewellery chain.
Diamonds and Pearls Ltd has been sold by administrators at KPMG to a new firm, Diamonds and Pearls 2009 Ltd.
The sale safeguards more than 300 jobs and 73 stores, including ones at the Pack Horse Centre in Huddersfield and at Leeds, Scarbrough, Castleford, Doncaster, Grimsby and Hull. Each store employs between two and five staff.
Joint administrators Myles Halley and Richard Philpott were appointed on March 2 when the Bedford-based company traded from 91 stores and had more than 400 staff.
However, they were forced to close 18 stores, including one in Keighley to preserve the remaining shops.
Mr Halley said: “We are delighted to have sold the business as a going concern only two weeks after administration. Seventy-three of the original 91 stores along with the head office have been sold to Diamonds and Pearls 2009 Ltd.
“This secures over 300 jobs in this very difficult retail climate. The workforce continued to work even though we as administrators could not afford to pay their February wages which were outstanding at the date of administration. These wages will now be paid by the purchaser.”
Mr Halley said that the new owners had a wealth of knowledge in the retail sector across the UK and Europe.