Fears for 56 jobs as Lisburn company appoints administrator

MORE than 50 jobs in Lisburn are in doubt after an administrator was appointed to the sole distributor of Caterpillar construction equipment in Northern Ireland.

Directors of McCormick MacNaughton (NI), which is based at Blaris Industrial Estate on the Altona Road, appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers as administrator on Monday.

It follows the appointment of a receiver to two companies in the McCormick MacNaughton Group in the Republic last week.

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McCormick MacNaughton (NI) Ltd employs 56 people in Lisburn.

PricewaterhouseCoopers administrator Garth Calow said: "Despite the downturn in construction-related activities, the Northern Ireland company has traditionally been profitable, with the trading and financial difficulties relating to wider group operations in the Republic of Ireland.

"This appointment will provide protection for the trading operations in this company, and discussions will continue with Caterpillar to determine how we might maintain trading until a full assessment is undertaken.

"My immediate priority will be to evaluate the company's financial position, and determine the best options for the business and creditors. During this period we will endeavour to maintain business as usual.

"The situation will become clearer over the next few days, after initial work is undertaken to stabilise affairs of the company."