Salmond: I'm confident Ferguson Shipbuilder has a sustainable future under new owners

Alex Salmond says he's confident that Ferguson Shipbuilder has a sustainable future under new owners.

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The First Minister met staff at the shipyard, which went into receivership last week, in Port Glasgow today.

Following his visit to the yard, Salmond tweeted: "Four bids have been received for the stricken Ferguson shipyard, administrators have revealed."

His comments come as administrators revealed that four bids have been received for the stricken shipyard.

Interested buyers had until 5pm yesterday to make an offer for the Port Glasgow firm - the last commercial shipbuilder on the River Clyde.

The business, which dates back to 1902, went into administration at the end of last week with the loss of 70 jobs following ''significant cashflow pressure'' in recent months.

Joint administrators Blair Nimmo and Tony Friar of KPMG say they cannot reveal the identities of the four bidding parties but two have made public their interest.

Jim McColl, founder and chairman of Clyde Blowers, told The Herald he had tabled a bid for the business while the owners of McGill's Buses, Sandy and James Easdale, have also declared their interest.

Administrators say they will evaluate the four bids and hope to select a preferred bidder early next week.

Mr Nimmo, head of restructuring for KPMG in Scotland, said: "The level of interest and support shown for the future of Ferguson Shipbuilders provides us with the confidence that a sale could be achieved which will hopefully lead to work restarting in Port Glasgow in the short-term.

"We would like to thank employees and bidders for their patience while we continue the important task of assessing the received bids."

First Minister Alex Salmond visited the shipyard to speak to employees this morning.

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