Baile blames Castel for Oddbins woes28th March, 2011 by Alan Lodge - This article is over multiple pages: 1 2 3 4
Oddbins managing director Simon Baile has laid the blame for the troubled off-licence chain’s potential collapse firmly at the feet of the company’s previous owners.
Baile, who applied to place the company into administration on Friday as it awaits the outcome of a creditors’ vote on a Company Voluntary Arrangement, claims that while Oddbins is still owed money by Castel over issues relating to the takeover in 2008, the company is also having to cover overheads and “drag” that, he claims, Oddbins should not be having to pay for.
“We’ve only just found out about a shop that closed years ago and yet we are still paying for,” Baile told the drinks business. “There is a lot out there that has really dragged the company back.”
Despite the fact Oddbins is on the verge of financial collapse, Baile insists that he and his team have been steering the business in the right direction since acquiring the loss-making chain two-and-a-half-years ago.
“We started to really make inroads into bringing Oddbins back to its roots,” he said. “Like-for-like sales were on the increase and we have been generating significant media coverage. All that says to me that we have been going in the right direction.”
Oddbins has only turned a profit once in the past seven years and, though Baile has cut losses during his time at the helm, this is showing few signs of changing.
Most recent accounts for the company showed that it turned over £67 million in the year to the end of December 2009, with pre-tax losses of £4.5m, an improvement on the previous year’s pre-tax losses of £6.2m.