Sowester Simpson-Lawrence in administration

At 2.30pm today business administrators were called in to Sowester Simpson-Lawrence. London firm KPMG is the appointed official receiver for Europe’s largest marine importer and distributor. The news follows last-ditch attemtps today to save the company which had been suffering severe cash flow problems. Personnel from Sowester remained unavailable for comment.

Reverberations will be felt throughout the industry as the decision throws into question the future distribution of a large sector of the marine equipment and accessories market throughtout Europe and the UK.

Sowester Simpson-Lawrence has a catalogue of around 25,000 product lines and supplies a significant proportion of the accesories, outboards and inboard aftermarket and OEM markets.

As well as its extensive range of own -brand chandlery products that includes marine clothing, Sowester represents exclusively in the UK, among others, pump manufacturers Whale, ITT Jabsco, Rule Pumps; deck hardware companies Lewmar, Spinlock, and RWO; refrigeration and heating specialists Waeco and Webatso; marine pyrotechnics manufacturer Pains Wessex; marine electronics manufacturers Eagle, Hummingbird, Lowrance, and Magellan; Lombardini small diesel engines and generators; Mercury outboards, Mercury MerCruiser sterndrives; and Sea Doo PWCs.