Scotland business

Caithness Stone Industries Ltd goes into administration

Scottish Parliament
Image caption The firm provided Caithness stone for the Scottish Parliament building

One of the leading quarriers and processors of the world-famous Caithness stone has gone into administration.

Caithness Stone Industries Ltd, based in Spittal, operated a number of quarries and also processed and despatched the finished stone.

It has previously supplied stone to the Scottish Parliament building and the British Memorial Garden in New York.

However, it has suffered from increased competition and rising costs.

Founded in 1999, the company had a turnover of just over £3m in 2012.

Apart from supplying Caithness Stone to many contemporary building projects, the firm has provided stone for a number of hotels, visitor centres and public buildings.

Cash flow

The business had also diversified into supplying the residential market by launching a range of new stone-based products for kitchen, bathrooms, gardens and furniture.

Joint administrators Iain Fraser and Tom MacLennan, of RSM Tenon, said increasing competition, heavy investment expenditure and rising operating costs had resulted in severe and unsustainable cash flow problems.

Mr Fraser said: "Caithness Stone Industries had a high profile as one of the leading suppliers and processors of Caithness Stone.

"The company invested heavily in new technology in order to improve the efficiency of extraction and processing, and successfully diversified into new residential markets.

"We will now undertake a thorough review of Caithness Stone Industries Ltd, the results of which will determine the next steps for the administration."

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