Administration - Shame


Leading financial and management services company Ernst and Young today confirmed that it had been appointed as administrator for the Thomas Sports Group which includes Frank Thomas, Motrax , BKS and Red Route.


Thomas Sports Limited
Frank Thomas Holdings Limited
Frank Thomas Limited
BKS Limited
Motrax Motorcycle Accessories Limited
Lintek Limited
(all in Administration)
(together “the Thomas Sports Group” or “the Group”)

28 January 2011: Tom Lukic and Ian Best of Ernst & Young LLP were today appointed Joint Administrators of the Thomas Sports Group, a distributor of branded motorcycle clothing and accessories.

The Group, which supplies to both UK and European markets, has circa 70 employees and operates from freehold premises in Finedon, Northamptonshire.

Tom Lukic, Joint Administrator, said, “The difficult trading conditions experienced during 2010 combined with a number of issues which impacted on the Group over the same period created liquidity problems in the business. Despite actions taken to restructure the business and reduce the cost base, the Group was unable to continue to trade in a manner that enabled it to continue to meet its liabilities as they fell due. The directors as a result requested the appointment of Joint Administrators to the Group.”

He added, “We are currently working with the Group’s directors and management team to understand the current position in more detail and explore all options. Following the appointment of Joint Administrators to the Group, our initial strategy has been to seek a buyer for the business and assets of the Group as a going concern and we are already in dialogue with a number of potentially interested parties in this regard.”

surely a load of cheap bike stuff will be on sale then? lol

Did Brian know more than he was letting on for when he sold to Frank Thomas?

One of my oldest mates works (worked) for FT - and he’s got a kid to support.

2011 is going to be a hard year.

Shame to see Motrax go down as well.

Apart from the obvious downsides of unemployment, I am not particularly saddened about FT and Motrax going down. FT products were cheap crap and useless when it rained and Motrax goods were overpriced. The less ‘tat’ on bikes, the better imo.:smiley:

I’d be surprised if they don’t find a buyer. They’re big brands.

And the already low quality will just leach away further.

and what about those people who can’t afford more expensive gear? should biking be only for those of us who are better off?

Hein Gericke do a good range of gear.

+1 (and I don’t even work there anymore :hehe: )

When a jacket or trouser is designated waterproof, it should be as it claims. Sadly Frank Thomas don’t see things this way.

I bought a £99 Shelltex jacket and £89 pants in Hein Gericke, and as they claim, protect against the rain even if it happens to be a heavy downpour.

This price is pretty rock bottom, so cheap doesn’t have to mean tat.

I bought a pair of cheapish (£80-100) boots for commuting from Hein Gericke that claim to be waterproof, and they are, but they’re breaking down completely after only less than 6 months of occasional use.
On the other hand, my HG leathers are alright.
I suppose I could take the boots back (1 year warranty), but I suspect I’d get the “wear and tear” card, and it’s pretty obvious they’re rubbish build quality rather than a production fault. So I rather vote with my £ and buy somewhere else next time.

I’ve had cheap Motrax stuff and think it’s alright. You generally get what you pay for.

This indeed - I’ve some HG ‘waterproof’ boots that weren’t and wore through the soles in less than a year
Also tried the textiles, but at the cheaper end the HG stuff isn’t great quality and isn’t waterproof in my experience.
I’ve never really had any FT stuff (apart from a pair of boots I picked up off ebay for £30, which are properly waterproof), so can’t comment on quality but there are a lot of people out there that swear by the stuff.
The brand will not die, methinks, and will be snapped up by someone.

I had a pair of FT textile trousers, started letting water in after a couple of months so got a refund and went and bought a pair made by Held, which are excellent.

I also got a spada jacket about a year ago, still totally waterproof. Not bad for £115 so pretty decent budget gear but next time I’ll go with Held…

Wonder what Infinity make of it, all they seem to stock is FT and BKS…

Good point, I wonder if they’ll be an interested party in taking over the brand. They don’t do any own brand stuff anymore, do they? I used to have a jacket (lasted years) from the chain of shops Infinity bought (it wasn’t called Rossi, but I think something like that?).

Regardless of how you rate their products to me it is a shame to see a company like this go down. Not sure what the causes are but I can’t help but think of how the banks have been notoriously crap at providing funding and liquidity to SME’s whilst they continue to enjoy their bumper profits and bonuses.

Its a shame to see any bike related company close and its happening so much lately, i mean look at Sondells and GirlsBike2 (apart from Hitchin)

Personally my almost 4 year old textile Frank Thomas jacket is still waterproof, even after 300 miles on one very wet day in Scotland last year.

Yeah Infinity no longer do their own branded stuff… Would make sense for them to take over the company but I imagine it’s a little out of their remit. They’ll probably just ship in a load more spada or rev’it budget-ish gear

Sounds like opinion is divided over the quality of Frank Thomas. I had a negative experience with their product so that’s my gripe but to be fair they do(did) offer a 2 year warranty.
You generally can’t produce great products at low prices. If you want proper longevity shell out for goretex gear i guess!!!

Funny old business this brands/image/experiences relationship.

I’ve three FT jackets and the Winter one is brilliant, completely waterproof after fair use and just suffers from being too sweaty if the weather is half decent. The Spring/Autumn and Summer ones were also good value, but not sold as waterproof. All bought as “seconds” at BMF Peterborough.

Son also has FT fabrics and they are still holding up well after 4 years, with just an annual wash/reproof, despite 8 or 9K miles per year.

I also own a couple of pairs of Lidl fabric trousers Both have been great so far with just one let down cured by the wash/reproof.

“Cheap” and "Nasty ain’t necessarily synonyms.

Ah yes… any opportunity to bash the banks. Do you know anyone who works for one? No-one I know has had a pay-rise or a bonus in 3 years now, so they’re all on 3 year effective pay decreases. Just look at what costs of fuel and electricity have done during that time!

And with regards to loans and liquidity - one of the big causes of the crash was giving loans to people who couldn’t afford to pay them back. So after the spanking, most retail banks are now a LOT more careful about who they lend to and how much they lend. Sure, some deserving people are getting caught out and hurt by this, but for the most part, isn’t this exactly what we the public demanded of the banks during the bailout ?

GirlsBike2 in Dorking hasn’t closed, just stopped paying to be a GirlsBike2 franchise. The sisters are now trading as H and A Motorcycle Clothing.