Unknown investor steps in to save Scunthorpe club and jobs
AN UNKNOWN private investor has saved a 2,300-member Scunthorpe social club from closure and the loss of 10 jobs.
The deal for the Rileys Club in Normanby Road comes only days after the former owners went into administration.
On Friday, November 23, Allan Graham and Jane Moriarty, of financial consultants KPMG, were appointed joint administrators.
The administrators immediately announced the sale of 78 sites, including Scunthorpe, to the mystery buyer, saving around 600 jobs.
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Twenty-five other sites had been closed by the Rileys directors with the loss of 150 jobs, prior to the administration move. Due to confidentiality clauses in the contract, KPMG has declined to comment on the identity of the Scunthorpe buyer.
But Mr Graham said: "We are pleased we have been able to rescue the large majority of the business with the sale to a private investor.
"The combination of difficult trading conditions and a significant number of loss-making sites meant the company was unable to continue trading on a solvent basis.
"However the business has a large and loyal membership base which made it an attractive acquisition opportunity."
Matt Crooke, 46, the manager of the Scunthorpe club for more than 17 years, said: "Naturally the staff and our members are relieved by the news of the sale. But at the same time we are saddened about the job losses for our colleagues elsewhere in the UK."
Mr Crooke said Rileys was the biggest sporting centre in the region, operating 14 pool and snooker teams, two football teams, four darts sides and its own golfing society.
The building has operated as Rileys since April 1995, having previously been JJz, Scene Three and originally Scunthorpe and District WMC and Institute – or the Bog Social.