Business advisory and corporate recovery firm Quantuma has helped to save 44 jobs after selling the business and assets of Whyte Chemicals Ltd in administration.
OQEMA has acquired Whyte Chemicals, a chemicals distribution business founded in 1976, and all staff will transfer to a new company called OQEMA Whyte Ltd, which will trade under the Whyte name.
The rest of the Whyte group of companies remains unaffected.
The sale follows the appointment of Andrew Andronikou and Paul Zalkin of Quantuma as joint administrators of Whyte Chemicals Ltd after the company, based in north London and Denaby, South Yorkshire, was forced to restructure its credit facilities earlier this year.
Robert Moss, managing director of OQEMA Ltd, the UK division of the Germany-based OQEMA AG group, said: “We are delighted to welcome a strong force in the UK chemical distribution industry into the OQEMA family.
“Whyte Chemicals has been a driving force in the industry and we are excited about the possibilities that lie ahead. We believe the new company will be able to capitalise on the solid business created by Melvyn Whyte over 40 years ago”.
Mr Whyte will remain an advisor to the new company until the end of the year to help manage the transition.
Mr Andronikou of Quantuma said: “The last few months have been a testing time for the suppliers, customers and loyal staff of Whyte Chemicals Ltd.
“Without their forbearance and understanding the job of rescuing this leading name in the chemical distribution industry would not have been possible.”
His joint administrator, Mr Zalkin, added: “Despite unexpected difficulties and significant external challenges Quantuma has hopefully delivered a fantastic result. We wish all concerned the very best for a bright future.”
Whyte Chemicals Ltd was one of the largest privately owned distributors of chemicals in the United Kingdom, with an annual turnover in the region of £70 million.
OQEMA Ltd, based in Carterton, Oxfordshire, was previously known as Lansdowne Chemicals, and has been owned by Germany-based Overlack AG since 2015.