End of chapter for The Book People
PricewaterhouseCooper's Toby Underwood and Zelf Hussain have been appointed as administrators by struggling bookselling business The Book People. Founded in 1988 as a direct sales business deploying self-employed agents, the business has moved most of its sales online and has been in the ownership of Endless which rescued it in 2014. It had been selling around 17 million children's books each year
With some 400 employees, in Surrey and North Wales, facing an uncertain future, it is understood that Endless had been seeking a buyer via PWC over the past months and had generated some interest. There will, PwC says, be no immediate job losses and that Christmas orders already in process will be fulfilled. Toby Underwood, PwC said: "While the administrators have funding to meet the payroll for December, the longer-term prospects for the business, staff, customers and suppliers will clearly be dependent upon whether a sale can be secured."
The Book People's CEO Claire Bayliss had been focused on rebranding and restructuring the business this year but it appears that Endless decided that it was too little too late.