Help-Link co-founder leaves business amid job losses

NorthEdge Help-Link L-R Alan Dickinson, Andy Ball, James Hall, Mel Butler
NorthEdge Help-Link L-R Alan Dickinson, Andy Ball, James Hall, Mel Butler
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Two executive directors at boiler specialist Help-Link have left the company, its private equity backers NorthEdge Capital have confirmed.

Mel Butler, chief executive and co-founder of Help-Link, and Alan Dickinson, chief operating officer, left the business on January 29.

This week, The Yorkshire Post revealed the Leeds-based business made 60 redundancies from its 459-strong workforce in December.

The company is currently consulting on further cuts. It is believed an additional 50 positions could be lost in the next round of redundancies.

The changes come less than two years after the business received £11m investment from NorthEdge Capital in 2013, and less than a year after it acquired insulation specialist Miller Pattison.

Commercial director Andy Dobbing, who joined the business in March 2014, has been appointed as managing director with immediate effect following Mr Butler and Mr Dickinson’s exits.

Grant Berry, managing partner of NorthEdge Capital, thanked the former management for their efforts building the business to its current position.

“We are confident that the business will continue to make progress under Andy’s leadership,” he said.

Miller Pattison is introducing an operating model “that does not require a ‘traditional’ branch network” as part of its integration into the group, Mr Berry said.

“The main drivers for this are market conditions and a state of the art IT platform that allows installers to work remotely. This replicates the Help-Link model, which has worked successfully for years.

“The business has done this in two phases to minimise any impact on trading performance. We do not envisage any further changes to structure or infrastructure.”

The firm, which is being operated as a separate brand, was bought from Sheffield-based SIG for an undisclosed sum in April 2014. At the time, it had 11 branches and 300 employees across the UK.

A spokeswoman said that employee numbers at Miller Pattison have “not changed significantly” since its acquisition.