PORTLAND Mitre10 ceased trading yesterday, putting 12 full-time staff out of work without any notice as the business was placed into liquidation.
An ex-employee said a dozen staff members were called to a meeting with owner Kent Barker at 5.30pm Monday, when they were told not to come to work the following morning. That was the only notice they were given of the closure.
All sections of the store, including timber and the garden centre, were locked yesterday, with the lights off and phones disconnected.
Mr Barker said the liquidation process meant employees couldn’t be given any more notice of termination.
“That’s the process of liquidation… there’s a very strict process to adhere to and we’ve done that to make sure we do the right thing by everybody,” Mr Barker said.
Mr Barker said 12 full-time staff had been terminated but declined to provide further details apart from a written statement emailed through to the Portland Observer.
Mr Barker said in the statement that, after years of rough trading conditions, Mitre10 had agreed in principal to purchase the business, but the sale fell through.
“Following this decision we were left with no alternative but to place the business in the hands of a liquidator,” Mr Barker said.
Read more in Wednesday’s Portland Observer.