Steelwork contractor Cleveland Bridge has issued advance notices of redundancies to around 220 staff as the firm battles for survival.
Senior managers were understood to be seeking to secure a £6m bailout from present owner, the Saudi Arabian Al Rushaid Group, but struggled to win further backing, according to insiders.
It is understood Cleveland Bridge filed for insolvency yesterday setting off the administration process as it struggled to pay subcontractors and suppliers.
A source told the Enquirer that problems emerged when the 2020 accounts were being put together late last year.
A source said: “A major Sri Lankan bridge building programme secured by the firm was put on hold cutting off an important revenue stream which exposed budget problems in the UK.”
This led to some streamling in May when around 24 redundancies were made.
Early last month chief executive Chris Droogan suddenly left the business because of ill-health, which fueled rumours that the firm established in 1877 was in financial trouble.
A spokeswoman for the company today confirmed that an advanced notification of possible redundancies had been issued.
“The company is actively taking advice and exploring a range of options,” she said.
Darlington MP Peter Gibson said that he had contacted senior management at Cleveland Bridge to seek reassurances about the business’s future.
He told BBC Radio Tees that they had confirmed administrators were being appointed.
“They are urgently seeking someone to buy the business. The fact it has got an 18-month pipeline of work is a very positive sign and the heritage is truly fantastic,” he said.