Talks with private investment firm Carlyle Group aimed at rescuing beleaguered wholesaler Palmer & Harvey have failed, according to reports.
Sky News reports the lack of agreement with Carlyle, which has been in a period of exclusivity with P&H for the past month, has left the wholesaler on the brink of administration.
As well as P&H and Carlyle, the talks involved tobacco giants Imperial Brands and Japan Tobacco International. The tobacco suppliers are understood to have stumped up significant amounts of bridging capital in the past few months while P&H looked to secure a deal over its future.
Sky is reporting that one source said P&H may have already filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators, while others believed that it was still trying to secure a rescue deal with creditors, including the tobacco companies.
P&H has been beset with availability issues over the past few months, which The Grocer understands has been linked to its ongoing financial situation. Sky said Carlyle had been looking at deal involving a pre-pack administration and The Grocer understands this to have been the case, with the investment firm paying a nominal fee of £1 for the parent company.
P&H, Imperial and JTI have been approached for comment.