The group, which operates 17 restaurant and takeaway sites across the Bombay Bicycle Club (BBC) and Tiffinbites brands, as well as catering arm Khana by Vama, Silk Events and high-end Indian restaurant Vama, received a winding up order from HM Revenue & Customs last month after falling behind on its debt repayments to Indian bank ICICI.
Investment group Calleon stepped forward to take on the business’ debt at the last minute, but despite best efforts, V8 Gourmet was placed into administration on 13 June.
According to the most recent accounts filed with Companies House, the group made a pre-tax loss of £2.6m in 2009, with sales of £10.4m. It is thought V8 Gourmet was making a loss of £200k a month.
Joint administrators Nimish Patel and Finbarr O’Connell of Re10 are continuing to trade the business as usual.
“We are continuing to trade V8 Gourmet and the sites of the sub brands, until such time that we can see a way forward for all elements of the business,” said Patel. “At present no changes are to be made, and we are working hard to secure the jobs of all 264 employees.
“We are at an advanced stage of discussions with an interested party with regard to the business,” he added.
Third time lucky?
V8 Gourmet first bought BBC, Tiffinbites and Vama operator Gourmet Restaurants from administration in January 2009. Its founders Andy and Arjun Vama joined the management team with a view to expand the BBC brand to 35 outlets by the end of 2010.
Celebrity Big Brother winner Shetty acquired a 33 per cent stake in the company in 2009, but stepped down as director at the end of last year just as the group instructed property agent Cedar Dean Gilmarc to sell 10 BBC outlets.