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Loss of contracts and funding led to Mayridge demise

Firm never recovered after losing contract for banking show in 2013

Pictured: Blondefish MD Laura Moody

Lost contracts and funding led to the demise of Mayridge, according to Blondefish MD Laura Moody.

Mayridge acquired event tech specialist Blondefish in 2014, four years after Moody established the company. However, last week Moody took back control of Blondefish, buying back the company shares after parent firm Mayridge, a live events and exhibitions agency, was placed into administration. 

Laura Moody said: “It’s all very sad. In 2013 Mayridge lost the contract for Sibos, the banking show it had been delivering for Swift for many years, and that was the start of the demise. Mayridge chairman David Freeman worked really hard to shore up the company and come up with a new strategy, but unfortunately that didn’t work.”

In the last available accounts, the Mayridge Group, which included the UK business Mayridge Ltd, Reveal and Mayridge Middle East, saw pre-tax profit slide from £480k in 2012, to £104k for the year-ending 31 December 2013. The UK arm, Mayridge Ltd, also saw a decline in pre-tax figures, from £432k to £306k.

In 2015 Freeman asked Moody to manage the whole group, not just Blondefish.

She said: “I didn’t want to do it, but I could see it was all hands to deck, and I wanted to support the company. We came up with a really good strategy, but the bank lost its appetite to support Mayridge through the difficult times.”

A large international organisation expressed an interest in buying Mayridge at the end of 2015, but the deal fell through. 

The firm’s collapse saw around 15 people lose their jobs. 

Moody added: “It’s been a traumatic time. The staff at Mayridge are an excellent group of people, and most of them have been snapped up by other agencies or gone freelance.

“There were around 15 people at Mayridge by the end, but in its heyday there were more than double that.”

Moody added that she has big plans for Blondefish’s future. 

“Blondefish has always operated completely separately from Mayridge, as it’s a different type of business, so it was a no-brainer for me to buy back Blondefish.

“We will continue, we’re doing really well and looking for triple turnover this year. We’re really excited about the future, we’re a really strong entity. I’m pleased to be the 100 per cent owner of Blondefish again.

“I’m going to let the dust settle a bit, but I’ll definitely be investigating strategic partnerships, we’ve got ambitious plans. We’re in a really good place and now’s the time to take the company forward.”

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