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Bevilles open to rescue despite family intent to reacquire business

Melinda Oliver /

Just days after 80-year-old jewellery chain Bevilles collapsed and announced its intent to keep the business in the family, it is has opened the field to buyers.

The company, which had turnover of $71 million for financial year 2013, sought expressions of interest in the Australian Financial Review today.

On Wednesday this week the business announced that it had entered voluntary administration, which it anticipated would take one to two months.

It said in a statement it would restructure, and that it was the “intent of the Beville family to reacquire the business”.

The company reported that the decision to enter administration and to restructure should ensure the brand continues, with smaller, new-look stores.

The jewellery chain employs about 477 people across 27 stores around Australia. It has a customer rewards membership of over half a million people.

The stores will remain open and continue trading, but as part of the restructure some stores will also close.

The chain offers well-known brands including Casio, Citizen, Fossil, Pulsar, Seiko and Swarovski. Established in 1934, the brand is headquartered in Melbourne and also has online sales.

David McEvoy and Ian Carson of PPB Advisory have been appointed as voluntary administrators.

PPB Advisory partner David McEvoy said the administrators will assess Bevilles’ restructuring proposal and report on it to creditors.

“Our intention is that most of the stores will continue to trade while we assess the ongoing viability of the business and work with management and other stakeholders to explore restructuring and sale options,” McEvoy said in a statement.

PPB Advisory was contacted by SmartCompany this morning but declined to reveal any more information at this stage.

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