ONE of Scotland's leading distributors of musical instruments has ceased trading with the loss of 11 jobs.

East Kilbride-based P&R Howard (Music), which distributed the Westfield guitar brand favoured by musicians such as McFly's Danny Jones and US singer songwriter Jason Mraz, went into receivership after difficult trading conditions impacted on cash flow.

The directors, including founder and managing director Paul Howard, appointed receivers Blair Nimmo and Tony Friar of KPMG after exploring restructuring options. The receivers are now selling the company's intellectual property (IP) assets and stock, including instruments marketed under the Westfield, Rossini, Lauren and Session Pro brands.

Glasgow-based IP specialist Metis Partners has been instructed sell P&R Howard's brands and related domain names, while an online auction has been held by Sweeney Kincaid to sell its sizeable stock, which included guitars, amplifiers, drums, mandolins, banjos and other instruments and accessories.

Mr Nimmo, head of KPMG in Scotland, said: "P&R Howard was established nearly 25 years ago and in that time has built up a strong international reputation as a distributor of quality musical instruments.

"Unfortunately the company experienced difficult trading conditions and the only option was to cease trading with immediate effect, with the loss of 11 jobs."

Nat Baldwin of Metis Partners, which helped sell the IP assets of Fopp to HMV, said he expects there to be "keen interest" in the sale from around the music industry.