70 jobs lost as pandemic kills events business

MCLCreate produced large-scale events, including Aston Villa's end-of-season awards

The show won’t go on for event production business MCLCreate after it was forced to close with the loss of 71 jobs.

The £10m-turnover company collapsed into administration as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

MCLCreate was based in Birmingham and had depots in Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow. It had developed a blue-chip client list over the last 25 years that included Cadbury owner Mondelez, Royal Mail, Specsavers, Ricoh and Aston Villa.

Raj Mittal and Ben Jones from business advisory firm FRP were appointed joint administrators of MCLCreate on Friday.

However the coronavirus restrictions are still preventing almost all live events which meant a sale of the business as a going concern was not possible and the workforce was made redundant.

Mittal said: “The financial and operational challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic have put the business in a position where it is no longer able to trade and its future has become unsustainable.”

The live events industry is facing a huge crisis, with no end in sight to the restrictions on large-scale events. The position is especially acute for large operators, with the big productions and tours requiring months of preparation time.

Theatres, including Birmingham Hippodrome, have cancelled their Christmas pantomimes and the live events industry is preparing itself to only restarting in earnest next spring.

Arena Birmingham and Resorts World owner the NEC Group and Redditch-based SSE Audio, the UK’s largest pro-audio hire, sales and installations group, have both recently warned of the dire position the sector is in.

The live events industry employs 1m people and held a “red alert” day of action two weeks ago to raise awareness of the problems it faces and calling for sector-specific support from the Government. However the Government continues to insist there will be no extension of the furlough scheme, either generally or for specific industries, and there has been no targeted support for businesses operating in the events industry that don’t own cultural venues.