Stephensons, Walker Morris act on Romag’s pre-pack sale to Gentoo

Stephenson Harwood and Walker Morris have completed the pre-pack administration sale of the assets of AIM-listed glass and solar panel manufacturer Romag Holdings to Gentoo Group.


Andrew Edge
Andrew Edge

The deal came after trading in Romag’s shares on the junior market were suspended in January following former chairman John ­Kennair’s admission that he injected £4m of his own money into the company.

Deloitte was appointed as administrator in March after Romag failed to agree refinancing terms with lender Lloyds Banking Group.

Gentoo, whose portfolio includes 30,000 social housing units in Sunderland, had already considered Romag as a potential partner for the refurbishment of those units with solar panels. It stepped in as the buyer in March.

Corporate partner Andrew Edge led the transaction for Stephenson Harwood, whose relationship with Gentoo is led by finance partner Natalie Elphicke.

Edge said the deal, which completed in less than two weeks from his first contact with Gentoo, was particularly challenging.

“The combination of a pre-pack of a plc and all the things that were going on ­in the background at the company made it particularly unusual,” he said.

The Stephenson Harwood team included corporate insolvency and restructuring chief Stuart Frith and environmental law head Andrew Wiseman.

Walker Morris advised Deloitte as administrator, with corporate recovery associate Simon Clark leading from Leeds. Pricewaterhouse-Coopers advised Gentoo on financial matters.