Another slice of Patisserie Valerie sold

Administrators from KPMG have sold a further slice of Patisserie Holding’s business, with the disposal of Baker & Spice to the Department of Coffee & Social Affairs for £2.5m

Meanwhile, the controversy surrounding the £40m of accounting irregularities at the high street café chain grows.

The latest sale follows the announcement last week of the Patisserie Valerie and Philpotts’ disposals, which were sold in separate transactions for a combined sum of £13m.

Patisserie Valerie was bought by Dublin based private equity firm Causeway Capital, and Philpotts was sold to A.F. Blakemore.

Weekend media reports suggested up to six people are currently under investigation over alleged fraud at the company, which first reported problems last October when it found a ‘black hole’ in its accounts and the existence of two unauthorised £10m overdrafts. 

The high street cake seller collapsed at the beginning of this year despite chairman Luke Johnson providing emergency funding and advancing a £10m loan.  

The four Baker & Spice outlets acquired comprise those in Belgravia, Chelsea, Maida Vale and in Selfridges on Oxford Street. A total of 68 employees have transferred to Department of Coffee and Social Affairs.

However, the Baker & Spice store in Oxford does not form part of the transaction and will close with immediate effect, with the loss of 10 jobs.

Matthew Gill, deputy chairman, Department of Coffee and Social Affairs, said: ‘We're very excited to now own Baker and Spice, it's a tremendous brand and the team are looking to build upon its success.’

Report by Pat Sweet

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