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Deloitte appointed to Yellow Pages parent 28 November 2013

Administrators from Deloitte have been appointed to the embattled parent company of Yellow Pages, hibu plc.

Neville Kahn, Phil Bowers and Ian Wormleighton have been appointed as joint administrators to the firm, which rebranded from Yell in 2012.

The company, which employs approximately 12,000 staff, has struggled with debts in excess of £2bn following a series of acquisitions and overwhelming online competition.

It reported a year-on-year sales decrease of 16% to £1.3bn for the year ending 31 March 2013, with its print and directory sales falling 22% year-on-year to £902m.

A statement from Deloitte said the appointment is “the first step in a wider financial restructuring of the group’s £2.3bn debt obligations, due in July 2014.”

The statement also confirmed the administration will not include the trading entities of the group, which “have not entered insolvency proceedings and will continue to trade as usual.”

In July, hibu plc announced creditors were to take control of the company as part of its restructuring plan.

The move was designed to cut £800m off hibu’s debts, accumulated through foreign acquisitions such as the £2.3bn purchase of Telefónica’s Spanish directory business in 2006.

Creditors of the business include George Soros’ hedge fund, US private equity group Blackstone, and European investment bank Deutsche Bank.

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