BRITAIN'S biggest coal producer finished a complicated reshuffle of its business today in a move that safeguards 2,500 jobs.
UK Coal, which was renamed Coalfield Resources, has split its operations into two businesses - a mining arm called Mine Holdings and property division Harworth Estates.
Ownership of the South Yorkshire-based group has been broken up between the company, a newly established Employee Benefit Trust and the Pension Fund.
Under the restructuring, the Pension Fund now owns 75% of Harworth Estates, which has 30,000 acres of land and other property, in return for a £30m cash injection.
The company, which generates about 5% of Britain’s electricity requirements, slumped to a loss in the first half of the year as production at its Daw Mill mine near Coventry plunged.
Chairman Jonson Cox said: "The restructuring has helped to safeguard 2,500 highly skilled and well-paid jobs, a skilled supply chain, and created a funding plan for the £450m pension deficit that UK Coal has been burdened with."
The group also saw several changes among its board of directors as part of the shake-up, including the appointment of RWE Npower’s chief operating officer as chief executive of Mine Holdings.