Friday High Five – the best of the West Midlands

Job centre plus (Credit: Andrew_Writer / Creative Commons 2.0)

It’s been a week of major property deals with the acquisition of Mitchell & Butler’s Birmingham HQ in a £46m deal, marking the first purchase from Sterling Property Ventures new asset management and investment arm.

We’ve seen Clarion Partners Europe has made its first investment from its UK logistics fund with the acquisition of a 208,000 sq ft warehouse in Coventry for £28m and a green light for the 210,000 sq ft £30m headquarters of Task Consumer Products in Wolverhampton to name a few.

But it’s been a gloomy week of job losses and closures of well-established businesses and operations.

Starting with Birmingham City Council which is preparing to cut as many as 600 jobs to tackle its £300m budget deficit. Analysis by the BBC also revealed that it has the most debt of any council in the country owing £2.9bn.

More than 100 jobs are at risk at Tile Choice after the firm ceased trading shortly after posting a notice of intention to appoint administrators and Lidi is set to enter into a consultation period with 100 staff as it announces the closure of its Walsall warehouse.

The pottery industry continues to be impacted thanks to the spiralling cost of energy resulting in Portmeirion and Emma Bridgewater announcing more than 70 job cuts across Stoke Potteries.

And Muller England is moving its 80-year-old operations out of Cleobury Mortimer citing a lack of “skilled resources in rural Shropshire”.

The examples named reveal issues that all businesses are facing: budget cuts, cost-of-living challenges, inflation, energy costs and wage increases and these issues are definitely here to stay.

On a brighter note, 167 players from collapsed rugby clubs Worcester Warriors, Wasps and London Irish will receive compensation following several successful employment tribunal proceedings.

All players, as well as non-playing staff were made redundant without notice when the clubs fell into administration and became insolvent. Former players have applauded The Rugby Players Association for pursuing the claims on their behalf and leaving no stone unturned.

Have a lovely weekend.

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