The new owner of Thierry’s said it is feels “no moral obligation” to repay debts to suppliers left out of pocket by the importer, but it is willing to negotiate. 

The business was bought by investment firm KKVMS, which is headed up by Richard Baizley, last month and now operates as Watermill Wines.

Talking to OLN, Baizley said: “We didn’t want to call (the purchase) a rescue, it’s a re-engineering. The core business is fantastic and we are in it for the long term.

“There is a lot of speculation and noise around Thierry’s and we have to calm things down. We don’t want to lose any producer or customer.

“At some stage we will talk to all (the creditors). Am I going to promise that everyone will get everything on day one? Of course not.

“I am happy to tell every single existing producer that they will get everything back. We know that we will have this great moral obligation waved in our faces.

“There are some producers who have said they don’t want to work with us. They have no moral obligation to me and I have no moral obligation to them. But it’s a two way street, there is a deal to be done.”

He claimed not to know how much was owed to producers, adding: “I don’t know any business that believes it has a moral obligation. What it’s all about is this business will only survive if relationships are maintained. But I’m not saying that I’m not going to pay people who don’t work with us (any longer).”