A charity that works to get young people and adults into jobs in Birmingham has collapsed into administration after suffering with a pension deficits and spending cuts.
Tony Barrell, Matthew Hammond and Ian Oakley-Smith, of PwC were appointed joint administrators of Birmingham-based BXL Services on January 23.
The charity, which has a turnover of approximately £1 million, has a long history in the education sector supporting 20,000 young people in the West Midlands per year.
It employs 26 staff, and is based in Birmingham.
John Ling, chief executive of BXL, said: “This is a very sad day for the West Midlands and is yet another blow to young people who potentially will no longer have access to essential work placement opportunities, work related learning and links with the region’s business community.
“We have been battling against a substantial pension deficit for some time, one that we unfortunately inherited as part of the local authorities of Birmingham and Solihull taking over the Connexions contract in 2008.
“The board and our management team have explored every opportunity to find a solution to this problem, but all avenues have now been closed.
“Working with the administrators, we have identified a number of local organisations who have shown an interest in acquiring the operations of BXL. We are still hopeful for a successful solution for the region.”
BXL engages 1,200 employers in 18,000 work related learning opportunities for young people, every year.
The charity is involved with education and employer engagement to help young people get ready for work, training and development for teaching professionals about work-related learning and work experience support.
Tony Barrell, joint administrator and director at PwC in the Midlands, said: “The charity provides a number of services predominantly to the education sector and has suffered a dramatic decline in contract income since 2008 with its funded programmes diminished due primarily to the cuts in government spending.
As a result of the decline in income and significant pension liabilities within the charity, the trustees concluded that they were unable to continue and have placed the charity into administration.
“Our immediate priority is to seek buyers for the business, to enable the business’ long term survival, preserve jobs and continue supporting customers and students.
"BXL engages with thousands of young people in Birmingham and Solihull every year and provides high quality delivery in the education sector. It appears that there is a good deal of interest in a number of BXL’s activities and we are hopeful that they will be able to continue under different ownership.
"We would encourage any interested parties to contact us as a matter of urgency.”
Ian Oakley-Smith, joint administrator, director and head of charity advisory at PwC said: “There has been a marked increase in the number of financially distressed charities approaching us for advice and assistance in recent weeks and months as the Spending Review begins to impact those charities reliant on government support.”