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Interserve sold to newly incorporated company by administrators

UK-based Interserve, the international support services, construction and equipment services group, has announced the appointment of Alan Hudson and Hunter Kelly of Ernst & Young LLP as administrators, and the successful completion of the sale of the group to a newly incorporated company, Montana 1 Ltd, which is in the process of being renamed as Interserve Group Ltd.

The sale has been completed immediately following today's appointment of the administrators, minimising any disruption to the business, providing continuity for customers and suppliers, and protecting the firms's employees - 45,000 people are employed by Interserve in the UK

The transfer of ownership to Interserve Group enables a deleveraging of the company to provide the business with a strengthened balance sheet and a more competitive financial structure to support its future growth.

A deleveraging transaction will now be implemented, and is expected to complete shortly after the sale of the Group, and will involve the equitisation of approximately £485m of existing debt and £110m of additional liquidity. At completion, Interserve Group will be owned by the firm's lenders.

Following completion of the deleveraging transaction, Interserve Group will be a well-capitalised, leading Support Services, Construction and Equipment Services company, consisting of:

· a leading Support Services business in the UK and Middle East, with excellent positions in growing markets and strong cash flow and significant margin improvement potential;

· a robust Construction business, with a clear strategy to use Interserve's market position to focus on the most attractive and lower risk opportunities in construction, building fit-out and infrastructure services, predominantly in the UK; and

· a leading Equipment Services business, which solves complex engineering problems for its customers, through the application of world-class design and logistics capabilities, backed up by an extensive fleet of specialist equipment.

CEO Debbie White said, 'With a stronger financial platform in place, Interserve will be able to concentrate on delivering value for our customers. The Group's transformation programme will continue, focused on improving our value propositions for customers, standardising our operational delivery, making Interserve simpler and more efficient through our Fit for Growth initiatives, and embedding a culture of ownership and openness throughout the Group.

'Interserve is fundamentally a strong business and with a competitive financial platform in place we see significant opportunities ahead as a best-in-class partner to the public and private sector.'