Harland and Wolff, a UK shipyard with a history of more than 150 years, has appointed administers and is likely to request for insolvency, BBC reports.
According to a spokesperson of the shipyard, the UK government has named accountancy firm BDO as administrators to oversee the restructuring of the Belfast-based company and an insolvency request is expected to be filed at the High Court in Belfast on Tuesday.
The shipyard, which built the iconic Titantic and employed more than 30,000 employees at its peak time in the 1930s, has only around 120 full time employees today. It has not built a ship since 2003, when it transformed its business to move into the renewable energy sector.
The worker’s union has been staging a protest at the shipyard for over a week and called for the shipyard to be nationalised to continue business. However, East Belfast MP Gavin Robinson told the BBC that officials had advised against government intervention.
Harland and Wolff was nationalised in 1975 and was purchased by Norway’s Fred Olsen Energy in 1989. Fred Olsen Energy, now known as Dolphin Drilling, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year and put Harland and Wolff up for sale. A deadline for the shipyard to find a buyer expired on Monday.
The administrator is expected to restart a sales process for the shipyard.