Iconic Southend firm Hi-Tec is staying put after its HQ was withdrawn from auction by the building’s owner which narrowly avoided administration over a £13million debt.

The land in Aviation Way, Southend - owned by Charter Projects (Developments) Ltd - was set to be auctioned to raise up to £5.75m for creditors but dodged going under the hammer after the company was able to agree a rescue package.

Administrators, London-based Smith and Williamson LLP, were called in over a loan of £7.2million from Investec Bank and a further £5.8million a from Metro Bank.

Charter Projects managed to refinance the company just days ahead of the auction due to take place in London today.

The company also owns the Athenaeum Club and land occupied by the Jaguar/Landrover dealership, both also in Aviation Way.

Yesterday, Charter Projects director Nigel Bayliss, said: “As a result of a recent action by the company’s bankers, this manifestly healthy company with assets in the order of £24-25m, was unnecessarily placed in administration.

“As a consequence of this costly and distressing procedure, it has been necessary for the company to refinance its funding requirements - in the order of £13m.

"This was achieved, without the assistance of administrators, on Friday, when the company exited the administration process, which has served to speak volumes for the company’s credit worthiness, yet calls into question the banks’ original ill-advised decision. “

Mr Bayliss added: “We can now also confirm that the company shall retain all existing assets, including the Hi-Tec complex - our tenant of 34 years - including an office block and two warehouses, the Beadles Jaguar/Land Rover Dealership, the Athenaeum Club and all lands to the west of Aviation Way.”

Hi-Tec, which was was founded by Frank van Wezel in the 1980s, changed hands three years ago and is now owned by Rajesh and Rajiv Batra.

The company declined to comment.