London-based Rayners Catering Equipment Hire has notified its customers it will wind down operations after over 100 years in business.
The family firm will be pulling down the shutters on 28 March but will continue to operate as normal and process orders until then to allow its clients time to find suitable alternative suppliers.
Director Raymond Rayner is the third-generation owner of the company, which was established in 1922 by his grandparents. He cited contributing factors to the closure as being changing market demands, increased costs across the board and difficulty recruiting quality staff.
He told The Caterer: 'Like all operators in the hospitality industry, we have seen considerable change in the market over recent years, predating the Covid-19 pandemic. Changes in entertaining style have caused a gradual softening in demand for services while increased overheads and costs have impacted our customers budgets and their ability to spend.'
Rayners ultimately made the decision to exit the market at this time on its own terms, 'ensuring we can honour all our commitments in full to our loyal staff, valued customers and suppliers alike', added Rayner.
In an email to the company's hospitality operator clients, he said: 'Rayners would not have been able to reach its centenary year in 2022 without the loyalty and support of both its staff and customers over these years. This has never been taken for granted and something we strived to earn.'
Rayners supplies tableware, buffetware, kitchen kit and utensils for hire. Following its cessation of operations, it will sell its entire stock of equipment.