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Patisserie Valerie facing fight for survival as UK tax offices issues winding up order

The winding up hearing is scheduled for October 31 and relates to £1.14mln owed to HMRC in unpaid taxes
pastries and cakes
The winding up petition was advertised on Friday, but the firm said it only became aware of it today

Patisserie Valerie’s parent company Patisserie Holdings PLC (LON:CAKE) is facing a fight for survival over unpaid taxes and “potentially fraudulent, accounting irregularities”.

The cake chain has revealed this afternoon that it is the subject of a winding up order from the UK tax office, which claims the company owes more than £1mln in unpaid taxes.

Speaking to the BBC, a spokesperson for Aberdeen Investments, which holds a 2.9% stake in Patisserie Holdings, said: “This is an entirely unforeseen situation upon which we are unable to comment until the results of the investigation become known.”

READ: Patisserie Valerie shares suspended

It came hours after Patisserie suspended its shares – and its chief financial officer – after discovering a black hole in its accounts, which some reports have speculated could exceed £20mln.

The bakery didn’t give specific details but did warn that the irregularities could lead to a “material change” in its overall financial position, while it said its cash resources had already been “significantly impacted”.

“We are all deeply concerned about this news and the potential impact on the business,” said Johnson, Patisserie’s chairman.

“We are determined to understand the full details of what has happened and will communicate these to investors and stakeholders as soon as possible.”

A full investigation into its accounts is underway, while Patisserie is in discussions with HMRC as it looks to resolve the tax issues.

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