Wood Hall Realisations Limited + 2 Directors of Merchant House Group

Merchant House Group (MHG) is described in one Investor Briefing in January 2012 as being “well advanced in the process of transformation from an unprofitable small corporate finance house specialising in the currently moribund niche of fund-raising on AIM and PLUS markets into a profitable financial services group focussed on investment products for the UK retail market.”

It is stated, “We particularly note new management has made some excellent deals with administrators of insolvent companies.

The biggest shareholder in MHG is Liberty Capital, holding just over 18% of the shares. One assumes that this is the same Liberty Capital incorporated in the British Virgin Islands and of which Mr Craig Whyte states he is 100% owner.

Two of the directors of MHG are James Holmes and Martin Eberhardt.

Both these gentlemen were directors of Wood Hall Realisations Ltd too. A third director was Mr Aidan Earley; the Earley brothers, Wulstan, Brendan and Aidan all having had business connections with Mr Whyte.

Wood Hall Realisations Ltd is in liquidation. It was a voluntary liquidation. This means that the directors assessed that, when the company was would up, there would be sufficient funds to pay the debtors within 12 months.

However, that did not happen.

I attach copies of 2 documents:- the liquidator’s statement of affairs December 2008 wood_Hall_4.20 and statement of receipts and payments as at December 2011 – Wood_Hall_Receipts_19-12-2011-1

There is a case regarding this company which called today in the Companies Court in London.

 

Wed, 08 Feb 2012

THE DAILY LIST
COMPANIES COURT

THE ROLLS BUILDING
COURT 26
THIRD FLOOR

Before
MS REGISTRAR DERRETT

Wednesday 8th February 2012

Robed

At half past 10
7449/2011       Wood Hall Realisations Limited

The exact nature of that case, which by the case reference would have been initiated last year, is not clear.

However, there seem to be some similarities with the situation of Vital UK, the company in connection with which Mr Whyte was disqualified.

Before I detail them I should say that these similarities are purely superficial and ought not to be taken as implying that, in any way, Messrs Eberherdt, Holmes and Earley have fallen even 1% short in their performance of their Directorial obligations.

If you recall, Vital UK went into voluntary liquidation on the basis that there was sufficient to repay all creditors within 12 months. However, that did not happen and the liquidation process dragged on for some years before being concluded.

One problem was that the director who signed the “Declaration of Solvency” stated that there was over £600,000 of bills receivable, but the liquidator reduced this estimate to only £100,000. As a result a surplus for creditors became a substantial deficit, and the biggest loser was HMRC.

In connection with Wood Hall, we see that the Company went into voluntary liquidation on 26 November 2007.

The liquidation is not yet complete.

The Declaration of Solvency appears to have suggested that there were assets of £1,027,000.

There are declared debts of £836,004.18.

The sums due to HMRC are £821,604.35.

The sums due to trade creditors are £14,399.83.

The winding up cannot be completed yet due to “recovery of debts”.

We therefore have a catering company which, at the time the directors chose to wind it up, had no assets other than over £1 million of book debt owed to it. There was only a liability of £14k to trade creditors, and £821,000 to HMRC.

It went under at the same time as two other companies, at least one of which had Messrs Earley, Holmes and Eberhardt as directors.

As I mentioned, there is no suggestion of wrongdoing here, although one might wonder if Mr Whyte, who owns, through Liberty Capital over 18% of Merchant House Group, has had his confidence shaken by such an outcome for two of the directors of MHG. 

The assiduous BillyBhoy68 has proved yet again that his digging skills are even better than mine!

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12 Comments

Filed under Courts, Insolvency, Merchant House Group, Uncategorized

12 responses to “Wood Hall Realisations Limited + 2 Directors of Merchant House Group

  1. Do you have any turnover figures for Woodhall? Curious as to how a business with debts totalling £836K can owe £821K to HMRC, Sounds like non payment of taxes/creditors is a common theme with Mr Wyhte and his associates. Augurs well indeed……………

  2. Fascinating research, Paul, BillyBhoy68.

  3. J Green

    Then Hollywood Media Services gets listed on AIM around the same time and then that goes bust too. Same people involved.

    http://www.uk-wire.com/Index.aspx?searchtype=3&words=hol

  4. David

    They’re a strange bunch those guys at MHG and their various subsidiaries, and it was Mr Whyte’s involvement with them that started my alarm bells ringing in the first place. For example..

    http://www.merchanthousefinance.com/

  5. sorrynocando

    http://www.merchanthousefinance.com/

    Look into the details of the subsidiary companies at the bottom of that page.

    Check them out with companycheck then have a good laugh to yourself.

  6. David

    Exactly, and check out the details of the companies proudly mentioned here clicking on each of “the team”!

    http://www.merchant-capital.com/our-team/

    What’s not mentioned is that most, if not all are dissolved, some have had their names changed, The Lanman Asset Management Limited mentioned re Mr Martin Eberhardt got changed to Catering 4 Events, dissolved, and Mr Holmes fails to insert the (Pakistan), which should precede Plc, because that’s dissolved too! Comapnies House doesn’t have a record of any Microcap Equities Ltd at all.

    Some of Mr Eberhardt’s companies have either or both of Aiden and Wulstan Earley as directors and one also has a banned Director, so he should pick his “bedfellows” a little more carefully!

  7. J Green

    Has someone let the cat out of the bag?? Check that last sentence

    Aiden Earley, who was involved with Epsom Eagles, then came on to our board when they joined us, was part of the consortium that has bought Glasgow Rangers

    http://www.thisissurreytoday.co.uk/Banstead-Athletic-planning-unlikely-alliance/story-15177127-detail/story.html

  8. J Green

    —Denials of Earley involvement in the Mail article by both Wulstan Earley and Craig Whytes spokesperson. http://tinyurl.com/MailOnSunday30102011

    Rumours abound of secret backers, although Whyte dismisses them as ‘total nonsense’. He concedes he knows one mooted figure, a former bankrupt called Aidan Earley, jailed for accounting malpractice in 1992, but only, a spokesman says, as ‘one of scores of people in his network of contacts who occasionally introduce him to deals. That is as far as their relationship extends’.

    Earley did not respond to Inside Sport’s questions, but his brother and business partner, Wulstan, says neither are involved in Rangers and he last spoke to Whyte at a charity golf day in 2009, attended by, among others, Jodie Kidd and Jimmy Tarbuck.

    —Then further in the article from the ThisIsSurrey article from the Chairman of Banstead today. tinyurl.com/73swy9s —

    “”It is not a secret that Aiden [Earley] is involved with Rangers, but to say that any academy we set up at Banstead would be a Rangers academy is not true,” Molloy said. “At the moment nothing is going on with the redevelopment until we have clearance from the council. And the fact that Aiden is involved in Rangers is neither here nor there, he is just a small part of this club.”

    • Borris

      So for anyone interested, all those in charge of Hollywood which happen to be the same as Woodhall ran both in conjunction with each other. Contracts were swapped between the two, and in fact there was several woodhalls all with similar names.

      We were taken for big sums by both businesses with no assets to realise to pay creditors. Strange indeed, when they had a lot of kit.

      Aidian Earley was made bankrupt at the end of last year, but it has been hush hush.

  9. Pingback: How Unfortunate – Merchant House Group now advised by Firm Formed by Rangers FC Director | Random Thoughts Re Scots Law by Paul McConville

  10. victim-of-legalised-thieving

    JAMES DOMINIC RUPERT HOLMES / CRAIG THOMAS WHYTE / HUGH FLEMING / DAVID GILLESPIE / PHILLIP BETTS change their position from Directors to secretary and create intricate web of companies to get people to part their hard earned cash. So beware!

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