P&I Data Services has abandoned its PC hardware operation as part of a restructure, after continuing losses forced the corporate reseller to call in business advisers to placate creditors.
The Uxbridge company has shed a third of its staff and appointed chartered accountants Baker Tilly to try to appease key creditors. P&I will reorganise around its networking and systems infrastructure arms.
Speaking exclusively to PC Dealer, Ian Summerfield, managing director of P&I, said: 'The track we were going down was not profitable as a result of margin erosion in the PC market. Coupled with some customer bad debts, this has forced us to rethink our business. We have refocused on value-add areas and have effectively moved out of the hardware business.'
Summerfield added P&I would no longer deal with Compaq, Siemens Nixdorf and Toshiba at a PC level, although it would continue supplying Compaq servers. It has reduced its staff from 135 to 90 and will concentrate on networking vendors Cisco, 3Com, Krone and Alcatel.
Jim Clifford, corporate services partner at Baker Tilly, said: 'The restructure follows 18 months of losses, but the directors are confident that the plans they have in place will result in a return to profitability. The company needs to put a proposition to creditors to give it breathing space while it sorts out its affairs.'
He added that P&I was yet to be advised on a specific plan of action, but added that a company voluntary arrangement was a 'realistic possibility'.
'Any plan does need to be approved by certain key creditors,' Clifford said.
The company will also undergo a board restructure with three employees joining Summerfield and finance director Philip Burgess in the next month.
According to credit rating agency Graydon, P&I Data Services made a pre-tax loss of £150,000 in its financial year ended September 1997, although turnover increased 15 per cent to £12.6 million.
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