Almost 60 jobs lost as Ballymena engineering firm JBE closes its doors

JBE Mechanical Electrical has confirmed it is to cease trading, just a week after the company went into administration.
Gareth McKeown

A PROMINENT Ballymena engineering firm has announced it is close at the cost of almost 60 jobs.

JBE Mechanical Electrical confirmed yesterday it is to cease trading, just over a week after the company was placed into administration.

The decision was made following a review carried out by the administrator, which ruled it is no longer feasible to continue trading. All 57 staff at the firm were informed yesterday they have lost their jobs.

Speaking after the meeting with staff at the firm's Ballymena headquarters, the administrator, Gerard Gildernew said the move was regrettable.

“Unfortunately, following our review of live contracts and the company order book, I have concluded that it is not feasible to continue trading the business in administration," he said.

"I wish to record our thanks to those staff who have assisted us in the past week as we continue to work to maximise realisations to creditors.”

JBE Mechanical Electrical, one of the north's best known electrical and mechanical contractors went into administration last Thursday after 35 years of successful trading.

Speaking at the time JBE managing director, John Blair cited "significant losses" on work in Scotland as a factor.

"In recent years, despite the challenging market conditions, we worked relentlessly to maintain a profitable business, however the struggle became overwhelming due to significant losses incurred on several Scottish contracts and we could no longer maintain our position," he said

The news at JBE is the latest jobs blow for Ballymena following the announcement of 190 redundancies at the Wright Group last year.

The town has also suffered in recent times from the high-profile closures of Michelin and and JTI Gallagher, which resulted in a combined loss of over 1500 jobs.

JBE Mechanical Electrical was set up in 1983 and works across the commercial, industrial and retail sectors in the UK and Ireland.

Notable previous contracts for work in Northern Ireland include Victoria Square shopping centre, the two Belfast airports and the Galgorm Resort and Spa.

In addition to its Ballymena headquarters located at River Business Park, JBE also has a London office. The firm's Scottish office closed in December 2016

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