Jobs saved as Bennetts is reopened
martlesham heath: The Bennetts electrical store has reopened following its acquisition by Hughes Electrical – saving around 20 jobs.
The store on the Beardmore Park retail estate closed following the collapse into administration of the Norwich-based Bennetts group early last month.
Administrators from accountancy firm PKF made 228 Bennetts staff redundant while efforts were made to find a buyer for the company’s 14 stores, all but two of which were located in East Anglia.
Hughes stepped in to buy a total of six stores, including that at Martlesham Heath which has now reopened with store manager Trevor Foster among the former staff rehired.
The Bennetts brand is being retained, in order to distinguish its larger out-of-town stores from the Hughes network of mainly smaller in-town shops.
Mr Foster, who worked at the Martlesham Heath branch when it first opened in 1988, said: “This has been a difficult time for us but now all the staff are just delighted to have the store open and for us to be trading again under the Bennetts brand.
“We are looking forward to meeting customers old and new and they can be assured of a warm welcome.”
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The breakdown of the number of staff rehired at each of the six stores has not been disclosed but Hughes says a total of 117 jobs have been saved as a result of its deal for the six sites.
Managing director Robert Hughes said: “We have been working flat out since we acquired the stores on March 22 and it’s a great tribute to all concerned that we have got them open again so quickly and I am glad to say we have been able to recruit a total of 117 former Bennetts staff.”