Cairns pie maker The Barrons Kitchen has announced that it has a new owner, who will turnaround the firm’s financial difficulties, expand the business and introduce new product lines.

George Birkbeck officially took control of the company this week after a buyout from PriceWaterhouseCoopers, who took over as receivers of the troubled pie maker on 15 November last year.

Birkbeck has reassured the Barrons’ 40 staff members that their jobs are safe and revealed that he hoped to employ more people later this year as the business expands.

He told the Cairns Post, however, that his first priority was to streamline operations and boost staff morale: “They’ve been through a hard time because they didn’t know whether they’d have their jobs tomorrow […] I want all the workers to be proud to work here and proud of their product.”

Sales manager Dave Sinclair, formally company director, has been set the task of ensuring company growth of about 25% a year through expansion into new markets. Birkbeck explained: “The big future here is the market outside of Cairns and the southern market – we’ve only just scratched the surface.”