Administrators reveal drainage firm with debts of £4m has ceased trading

Administrators have confirmed that all the staff working at a drainage company have lost their jobs following its collapse.

Colus Limited – a national drainage and sewer company with was based in Somerset – has officially closed its doors with the loss of 74 jobs.

The firm, which has debts of more than £4m, had depots in the Somerset, Leicestershire and Worcestershire and at one stage employed more than 120 people.

Accountancy firm Leonard Curtis was appointed as administrators on Monday 8th January 2024.

The drainage firm, which also specialised in CCTV surveys and no-dig repairs, ceased trading in December 2023.

All employees were made redundant on 29 December prior to the appointment of administrators.

Joph Young and Conrad Beighton from Leonard Curtis have been appointed Joint Administrators and are working to support former Colus Ltd employees with their claims.

The administrators are also focused on the sale  of assets following their appointment.

Clients included JN Bentley, Barhale, Yorkshire Water, WSP, May Gurney, Severn Trent Water, Enviroco and Anglian Water.

The firm, which was founded just over ten years ago, announced in December it was intending to appoint administrators as a result of its mounting debts.

Colus’ latest accounts, made up to the end of August 2022, show the firm owed creditors over £4.2m.

At the time, the company employed 85 people – down from 122 in the previous year.

Last year Irish firm McBreen took a share in the struggling business.

At the time Colus managing director Simon Aylott-Cleaver, said: “The partnership with McBreen will see both companies support each other with its specific innovations in to ‘No Dig’ pipeline rehabilitation and maintenance, there is a synergy between both companies that was clear from the very first meeting and we look forward to developing that further.

“Colus will receive the backing from the McBreen Group to intensify its efforts to increase its market share whilst ensuring that the ideals of quality and safety continue to be utmost in the delivery of all of our work. “

The firm’s issues began in March 2021 when a major contract came to an end and a new one started. The change in circumstances led to a period of financial uncertainty.