Bidder offers new hope for staff at Hall’s jobs

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A FINANCE firm which made an offer for the Hall’s of Broxburn meat processing plant today claimed the factory could be kept open despite the announcement by owner Vion that it will close with the loss of 1700 jobs,

Private equity firm Graf Capital was one of three bidders for the famous factory, but Dutch-based Vion said on Friday it had been “unable to identify any viable alternative to the closure of the plant”.

However, Graf managing director Steve Green said his firm had spent four weeks examining the books with a view to taking over Hall’s as a going concern.

He said: “I am keen to reassure the staff that there is a credible bid to save the business. We believe it can be taken over by us within 14 days.”

He claimed Friday’s announcement “may have caused a lot of heartache unnecessarily”.

Mr Green said: “Given that there is still a viable bid on the table, I feel it would have been fairer to staff if they had held off.

“The workforce have been sitting there all weekend thinking they are going to be out of work. But as far as we are concerned, we could be in and operating the factory. If we sit down and sort out the terms, the factory could have a long-term future.”