Coffeesmiths Collective, the growing speciality operator, will continue to operate the 11 Filmore & Union stores it bought in a pre-pack administration.

Coffeesmiths chief executive Toby Smith said the company would continue to implement the plans for the healthy eating brand that were in place before its acquisition.

He also confirmed that the Filmore & Union founder Adele Ashley had left the business at the time of the acquisition, which saw a further eight sites close.

Smith told MCA: “We love the Filmore and Union brand and have no plans to change any of the sites. We are continuing and implanting the brand plans that were in place before our acquisition.”

Coffeesmiths Collective bought 11 Filmore & Union coffee sites at the end of May for £350,000 in a pre-pack administration.

While the North East-based group was profitable at a unit level, sales were in decline for a period of around 18 months, according to an administrator’s report.

The business had substantial central overheads, including a head office and central kitchen, which rendered the group loss-making as a whole.

The management accounts to March 2019 reflected a loss for the year of approximately £730,000.

In January 2019, an offer to acquire the company was withdrawn amid continued poor trading, with backer BGF approached for further funding - providing £240,000 of investment by way of secured loans to assist cash flow.

This allowed for a review of the business to be undertaken, which found trading results were materially worse than originally anticipated, with funding of £1.8m to £2m needed to continue trading - a request which was declined by BGF.

BGF, which originally invested a £3.5m in the group, held a 34.9% stake in Filmore & Union whilst crowdfunders held a further 15.7% stake.