50 jobs safe in driving school rescue
FIFTY driving instructor jobs in Barking are safe today (Wednesday) after the UK s third largest school, Red, was rescued in a multi-million pound deal. The �40million school, which has more 1,000 instructors working under franchise and 400 salaried staff
FIFTY driving instructor jobs in Barking are safe today (Wednesday) after the UK's third largest school, Red, was rescued in a multi-million pound deal.
The �40million school, which has more 1,000 instructors working under franchise and 400 salaried staff, went into administration last week but was taken over by specialist "turnaround" equity firm Kelso Place.
Kelso is injecting millions of pounds from its �100million "special situations fund" to pay administrators MCR return the school to profitability and expand the business.
Kelso partner Philip Weston, 42, said: "We are not making any redundancies. Every job is safe.
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"We have made a significant cash investment in Red in order to solve its funding problem and to ensure that it is able to continue operating successfully for the long term."
The school, described as "the fastest growing" in the UK, sought to woo new instructors made redundant in the recession in a TV ad campaign, but went into administration after �3,000 loans given to them to take the Red driving instructor courses stopped.
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Red has around �40million of revenue, according to Kelso, but recorded �2.2million losses last month, compared with �3million profits in October.
Red's parent company, LVG, has 400 staff including "super instructors" training new franchisees across 22 colleges.
The Brighton-based firm also offers driving instructors accountancy services called FBTC, Practical Driver Instructor Aids, which supply tools to instructors, and publishes driving instructor magazine adiNews.