FAILED crawler crane manufacturer NCK of the UK is set to return to its previous owners.

Staffordshire Public Works (SPW), put itself and five subsidiaries, including NCK, into administrative receivership in April. Four of the subsidiaries, unrelated to cranes, have traded their way out of administration. NCK and SPW itself went into liquidation.

A bid of £140,000 ($200,000) for the assets of NCK from former SPW shareholder Richard Prior was expected to be approved by a creditors’ meeting on 29 June, since the next highest bid was £100,000.

Prior retired from SPW two years ago through ill-health. He is buying NCK though a vehicle called SPW Traffic Service. It is understood that ‘new’ SPW will have another go at making NCK work, freed of a costly tenancy agreement it had with another former NCK owner, Cliffe Holdings, which was in fact the biggest creditor of NCK this time around.