Jobs secured as Bury St Edmunds-based pressure vessel manufacturer Stanref is sold out of administration

Mark Upton, a partner at Ensors.
Picture: Roger Barcham, BMS Imaging

Mark Upton, a partner at Ensors. Picture: Roger Barcham, BMS Imaging - Credit: Archant

More than 20 jobs have been saved with the sale of a Bury St Edmunds-based manufacturing business which went into administration last month.

Mark Upton and David Scrivener of regional accountancy firm Ensors were appointed joint administrators of Stanref International on September 29.

The business and assets of Stanref have now been sold to a wholly-owned subsidiary of DAMSLE LLP, securing the immediate future of the 24-strong workforce.

Stanref, which is based in Northern Way, Bury, was established in 1982 as a manufacturer of pressure vessels and heat exchangers for the refrigeration industry and over the past decade has also targeted the oil and gas sectors.

Mark Upton, business recovery and turnaround partner at Ensors, was called in by the company to help after it began to experience difficulties.


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Mr Upton said: “Stanref had some challenging issues but from the outset our focus was on trying to secure a sale of the business as a going concern and to secure the continued employment of the long serving, skilled and loyal work force and I am delighted that with the sale to DAMSLE we have been able to achieve that.”

DAMSLE LLP, which has its registered address in Great Waldingfield, near Sudbury, is a privately financed investment house specialising in supporting SMEs in East Anglia and the Home Counties.

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Adrian Howlett, a partner at DAMSLE LLP, said: “Demand for air conditioning and heat exchangers is still in a growth phase. Stanref has a unique position in the supply chain which Brexit outcomes could help benefit, so we are pleased to be able to support this long established, Bury St Edmunds-based business.

“With some reinvigoration and focus, we expect the business can build on its reputation for quality product and start to scale up activities.

“If that can be achieved we can provide greater certainty and security for the workforce.”

Mr Upton added: “Recognising the strength of the Stanref name in the industry, DAMSLE have acquired the business through a company specifically established for the purpose and will trade under the name of Stanref/Stanref International (2017) Ltd going forward. We wish them every success.”

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