UK videogame PR firm Barrington Harvey, headed by director Simon Harvey, has gone into liquidation after 22 years in the business.
The company previously worked with Codemasters, Eidos, the annual Edinburgh Interactive Festival, Sony, Nintendo and ELSPA.
For the financial year to June 2009, the company had made a loss of £258,000, and although this year’s financial reports aren’t yet available, “it is apparent that losses were also incurred” according to administrator Portland.
“The trading losses were exacerbated by drawings that the director made on the company for personal use over a number of years which resulted in an apparent debt calculated by Mr Harvey to have been £80,000 before it was repaid shortly before our appointment,” said the administrators.
“The lack of funds resulted in VAT and PAYE arrears accumulating, since there were no other significant suppliers that might have been extended, and the amount due to HMRC eventually reached around £200,000.”
Harvey had tried to secure new funding through private investors or bank loans but to no avail. However he did manage to secure £190,000 through the sale of property which went towards clearing the debt with Barclays bank, supplier of the firm’s overdraft facility.
“This advance has been treated firstly as a repayment of the amounts that Mr Harvey owed the company and the balance remains as a debt now due from the company,” detailed the administrators.
“Mr Harvey, as the company’s principal shareholder, has already concluded that he no longer wanted to support the company, nor to be employed by it, and instead prefers for there to be an orderly winding up.”
The plight of the staff currently working at the company is unknown; whatever happens, we wish them all well.