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Liverpool Apprenticeship Provider Goes Into Administration

08 Mar 2017

Liverpool Apprenticeship Provider Goes Into Administration

Liverpool national training provider, First4Skills, has gone into administration, putting 200 jobs at risk and potentially leaving thousands of apprentices without a training provider.

The company, which also has offices in Birmingham and Kilmarnock, is 60 per cent owned by the City of Liverpool College.

The news comes as the UK Government’s Skills Funding Agency, run by the Department for Education (DfE), terminated its contract with First4Skills.

Explaining their decision to pull the plug on First4Skills, a DfE spokesperson said: “We have exercised our right to terminate First4Skills Limited’s contract. We are working to ensure learners’ programmes are not disrupted and that where required alternative training provision is identified and transfer arrangements made. We will work with employers through the National Apprenticeship Service to ensure they are fully involved in the transfer process.”

RSM Restructuring Advisory is now the administrator for First4Skills and has confirmed that the firm has ceased trading.

Commenting on taking First4Skills in administration, one partner of RSM Restructuring Advisory, Lindsey Cooper, said: “We are working with the Skills Funding Agency and Skills Development Scotland and our professional advisors to assist in the process of transferring the learners to new training providers, whilst maximising the returns to creditors. We are also working with the affected employees, providing support to them during this period of uncertainty.”

“The decision to appoint Administrators was made by the directors of First4Skills Limited due to the withdrawal of its key contract with the Skills Funding Agency. The move impacted the financial stability of the business, which called into question the company’s ability to continue to trade.”

Up to 6,500 apprentices could be affected by the demise of First4Skills, with retail apprenticeships set to be most at risk.

If you think you might be affected by the collapse of First4Skills then act early to try to find a new apprenticeship. It’s also worth noting that, from May 2017, there will be a new Register of Training Providers which should help apprentices compare ratings for different providers of apprenticeship training programmes. You can find out more about that on the GOV.UK website.

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