Day 3 – Rangers Football Club PLC (In Administration) + Craig Whyte’s Corporate Structure Mapped

I have still not had the opportunity of watching the administrators’ press conference from yesterday.

However, it seems from reports that an important (!) issue is the £24 million or so from Ticketus.

The administrators do not know where it is! (Which is quite important, I feel.)

They say that it did not go through the Rangers’ bank account. However they are vigorously investigating the matter, and have asked Rangers’ former lawyers for assistance.

So we have the following scenario:-

Before Mr Whyte’s company completes its takeover of Rangers a deal is reached with Ticketus.

Someone sells or mortgages much of Rangers season tickets for the next three years to Ticketus.

The money, which may or may not have paid off Lloyds Bank, is not paid to Rangers, whose season tickets these after all are, but to someone else.

The administrators say the debt is not secured against Rangers’ assets.

They are baffled as to where it went and where it now is.

This might be a simple suggestion, as after all, I am a simple man.

DEAR ADMINISTRATORS – WHY DON’T YOU ASK CRAIG WHYTE, ANDREW ELLIS AND GARY WITHEY?

Mr Whyte is the man who bought Rangers with almost £33 million “of his personal wealth” as he told Tom English recently. He by his own boasting is the main man. Surely he would know?

Andrew Ellis has been a director of Rangers for a few weeks, but a director of the parent company since even before Mr Whyte. Perhaps he has some idea as to what has happened?

Gary Withey is Rangers’ Company Secretary. He is a partner in Collyer Bristow, in whose client account the money sat to prove to Sir David Murray that Mr Whyte was not making it all up.

Either (a) it has not occurred to the administrators too ask these gentlemen the question (b) they have asked and, perhaps because of other commitments, they have not been able to answer or (c) they have answered, but not to the administrators’ satisfaction.

Maybe a reporter could ask this at their next press conference?

Why ask Rangers’ former lawyers? Maybe their present lawyers know?

Maybe they could ask Ticketus for sight of their paperwork – after all, Ticketus might think it is a major creditor?

We shall see what happens today.

I suspect the possibility is that the administrators might say that they cannot speak about this as a police investigation is ongoing, in which case, trhat surely puts Rangers into limbo till the money runs out?

And if the parent company is funding the administrators through this funding, and, as Mr Johnston thinks, there has been criminality, can Duff & Phelps continue where they might be running the club from proceeds of crime?

 

 

On a side note, but also of great importance, indeed VITAL importance, one of my excellent readers, DCR, has prepared a map showing Mr Whyte’s corporate structure at present.

I tried something similar but ended up with a migraine and lots of waste paper!

It is excellent and I commend it to you. If anyone wants to chip in comments or additions, then feel free.

It is good to see that Mr Whyte’s affairs are ordered in a simple and straightforward manner!

You can find the document here. CW Corporate Structure

The plan does not list the following dissolved or wound up companies where Mr Whyte was involved, or is believed to have been.

 

1.       Vital Plant Services Ltd

2.       Vital Holdings Ltd

3.       Vital Development Capital Ltd

4.       In-Store Security Services Ltd

5.       CCS 1996 Ltd

6.       CSS 1996 Ltd

7.       ISS 1996 Ltd

8.       VPS 1996 Ltd

9.       HAG 1996 Ltd

10.   Hire Access Group Ltd

11.   VH Investments Ltd

12.   LM Logistics Group Ltd.

13.   Merchant Corporate Recovery PLC

14.   Email Factory UK

15.   Saltire Renewals

16.   EMF Management Ltd

17.   Kirsten Management Services

18.   Re-Tex Plastic Technology

19.   Cathedral Security Services

20.   Priceless Protection Ltd.

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26 Comments

Filed under Administration, Craig Whyte's Companies, Football, Insolvency, Rangers

26 responses to “Day 3 – Rangers Football Club PLC (In Administration) + Craig Whyte’s Corporate Structure Mapped

  1. Andy

    The Corporate Structure link not working for me.

  2. noooby

    If someone offers say £1million for rangers trophy cabinet – to secure for the nation – how could the administrators turn this offer down?

  3. I know it’s not a direct company link as such but if you could let the guy that did the map know that Merchant House Group have something like £8.8M of client money invested with Pritchards Stockbrokers he might draw a dotted line between the two.

  4. J Green

    CW had to prove he had the funds during takeover, he said he deposited £30million+ into a bank account to prove this. Pritchard Stockbrokers currently under investigation had £35million in client funds showing at the last accounts.

    Makes you wonder if it was borrowed for a few days??

  5. Duff and Phelps made a most uninspiring beginning to their appointment. Their repeated emphasis on prioritising the interests of the club and its supporters would not fill me with any confidence if I were on of the club’s creditors. It was a most bizarre performance.

  6. Leonard

    Paul,

    This is the first mention I’ve seen of the Proceeds of Crime legislation. I imagine there will be a lot more than mention of it when the dust settles – re past and present directors.

  7. DCR

    Turns out there are a few more skeletons in the closet. The following companies are noted as being ‘Directed’ by CW;

    Intercity Guards Ltd. (SC132744) – Director & Secretary – Dissolved
    Whyte Communications Ltd (SC127955) – Director & Secretary – Dissolved
    Whyte Forbes Contract Services Ltd. (SC12314) – Director – Dissolved
    Whyte Plant Ltd (SC120702) – Director – Dissolved
    Whyte Plant Edinburgh Ltd – Director – Dissolved
    Whyte Hire Ltd (SC116474) – Director – Dissolved
    Zemfill PLC (07360672) – Secretary – Dissolved

  8. TheBlackKnight

    either (a) it has not occurred to the administrators too ask these gentlemen the question (b) they have asked and, perhaps because of other commitments, they have not been able to answer or (c) they have answered, but not to the administrators’ satisfaction.

    ……… or d) the Administrators already know but to admit so would cause a public ‘stooshie’. (ongoing investigations and all that)

    Excellent as always Paul.

  9. TheBlackKnight

    Paul,
    a simple question from a simple man 😉

    Putting ‘good practice’ and ‘corporate governance’ to one side, is there anything in statute that would allow an individual (or company) to purchase a (distressed) company with the future sales of that company?

    In addition, if that company attempted to circumvent any restrictions in law, by maneuvering capital from client accounts to company accounts to use as leverage, could that be seen as misappropriation?

    In fact, no need to answer……………….. 😉

  10. Paul

    Now that Ticketus have stated they OWN the season tickets, it is not a loan, maybe they could help the “expert administrators” track the missing 24 million?

    I would have thought if you had a 24 million pound hole in your accounts, the first place to go to would be the person who gave you it and where they put it? Im sure Ticketus/Octopus have got account records, transaction details, invoice numbers etc to help the administrators at least track where the funds were put originally…..

    …or would this information get Mr Whyte and his associates in a bit of bother, and the administrators being completely impartial dont want that 🙂

    • Craig

      Money will have gone into a parent coy account (I think this much may actually hav been admitted). The parent coy with show a liability to the Club. When the Administrators of the Club try to realise this asset in their books (ie ask for the money from the parent) guess what, the parent will be insolvent. Incredible that Ticketus would lend on the strength of a future revenue stream with no security.

  11. I love Duff and Phelps.
    Where’s the money? We don’t know.
    Duff and Duffer more like.
    There’s IP’s that advertise on local tv and radio could have found it by now.

    • Cammy

      Exactly. How can they not know? I’m no expert, but how long does it really take 2 experienced professionals to work out how a club lost that much money. Did any money paid back to ticketus go through the club?

      It does seem shady to say the least. Is it possible that money shifts around his(and his associates’) network of companies, these companies have similar names, similar directors who come and go and are often being swiftly and voluntary dissolved.

      It may leave money more difficult to trace

  12. DCR

    INtersting to note that the BBC are reporting on the Pritchard missing £8.8 funds and are reporting CW in this manner….
    “whose company secretary is ex-Rangers chairman Craig Whyte”

    Do theyknow something we don’t?

  13. Exile

    So Ticketus own – is it fifty per cent worth? – of Gers’ season briefs for four years. That means if a CVA is agreed, which will entail a substantial sum being paid back to the Revenue at the very least over a lengthy period, then the club would basically be running on buttons for five or more years – half of the season ticket revenue would be gone and other income going to repay debts. In that case, a CVA would be crazy so liquidation becomes an absolute no-brainer. Or am I missing something?

    • Paul

      Considering Rangers by the administrators own admission are still trying to sort out the Daniel Cousin situation (Surely a legit administrator would just cancel the contract as it is of no benefit?) I really have no idea what is coming next. One minute they are in administration and fighting to play the next match, negotiating with police etc, the next they are trying to sign a player on 7500k a week and saying that the Jelavic money is still within the club!!!

      Its the most shady thing I have ever seen! Yet our MP’s and media seem oblivious to it!!!

    • Craig

      Exile – the administrators are not bound by this deal (Ticketus purchase of the season tickets). Ticketus have effectively paid in advance for goods (the tickets) not yet provided. It would appear to be no different to any insolvent company having received customer deposits for goods or services not yet provided – result is unsecured claim for any monies advanced.
      And the way the Administrators are talking there must be a suggestion that the Revenue will accept something much less than the numbers being mooted (I would say £15m).

  14. David

    Following on from your statement that:
    “Under Paragraph 45, when a company is in administration, all business documents issued by the company and the company website must specify that the company is in administration and who the administrators are.”

    I had a discussion with my MD (an accountant) who thinks that the name ‘Rangers FC (in administration)’ need only appear on websites that are transactional in nature. Out of interest, I went on to go through the process of buying a ticket for tomorrow’s game (with no intention of completing the purchase of course), and nowhere does it say anything about being in administration. Even at the foot of the page, the contact information reads: “Rangers Football Club, Ibrox Stadium, 150 Edminston Drive, Glasgow, G51 2XD.”

    Apparently, the game tomorrow is a complete sell out (although tickets are, mysteriously, still available from the website), there is no mention anywhere during the ordering process that Rangers are in administration. Perhaps it may say something at the checkout stage of the order. I didn’t go that far, but I would have thought that I should have been clearly stated from the outset of the order process!

  15. Jim

    The BBC website today carries a story headlined :
    “Rangers administration: Craig Whyte says he has ‘nothing to fear'”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-17075361

    I noted the following statement :
    “David Whitehouse of administrators Duff & Phelps said: “Craig Whyte has co-operated with us since our appointment as administrators and we believe his announcement brings further stability to the situation as we conduct the administration of Rangers’ business.””

    It seemed such an odd statement to make in the circumstances. Are they doing PR for Mr Whyte now too?

    / Jim

    This is the full text of the item :

    “Rangers administration: Craig Whyte says he has ‘nothing to fear’
    Craig Whyte has said that “every penny” which has come in and gone out of Rangers under his ownership has been “properly accounted for”.

    The club chairman described the events of recent days as “traumatic”.

    Mr Whyte said he was now taking a “step back” and would not attend Saturday’s match against Kilmarnock at Ibrox.

    He added that he had always acted in Rangers’ best interests and had “absolutely nothing to fear” from any inquiry into his purchase of the club.

    The Scottish Premier League club appointed administrators on Tuesday, with HMRC pursuing an unpaid £9m tax bill accrued since Mr Whyte assumed control at Ibrox in May.

    In a statement on the club’s website, Mr Whyte he was “100% confident” administrators would prove that all money that had come in and gone out of the club during his tenure has been properly accounted for.

    He added: “I wish to state categorically for the record now that I personally have not taken a single penny out of Rangers since I became chairman and have paid all my expenses from my own funds.”

    His statement comes after it emerged on Thursday that former Rangers chairman Alastair Johnston has asked the Crown Office to investigate Mr Whyte’s acquisition of the club.

    Questions have also been raised as to whereabouts of £24m paid to the club by the firm Ticketus for future season tickets.

    Administrators Duff and Phelps said they did not have “visibility” of where that money had gone.

    In his statement, Mr Whyte said he fully understood fans’ anxiety and that safeguarding the future Rangers remained his intention.

    Continue reading the main story

    Start Quote
    I have always acted in the best interests of Rangers and been involved in no criminal wrong-doing whatsoever”
    End Quote
    Craig Whyte

    Rangers chairman
    He said: “The traumatic events of the last few days have, understandably, led to a great deal of angst and uncertainty as well as firestorm of media speculation, much of it ill-formed and some of it downright malicious.

    “That an internationally-renowned institution such as Rangers should find itself in administration is bound to create shockwaves, particularly among the club’s magnificently-loyal fans, and I fully understand their anxiety.

    “The decision to call in the administrators was painful but it was the right thing to do.”

    Commenting on the news that information had been passed to Strathclyde Police and a call made for an investigation into his takeover of Rangers, Mr Whyte said: “I have absolutely nothing to fear because any fair investigation will prove that I have always acted in the best interests of Rangers and been involved in no criminal wrong-doing whatsoever.”

    ‘Further stability’

    The chairman said he wanted to let the administrators get on with their work, so was taking “a step back”.

    He added: “Regrettably, I will not be attending tomorrow’s match against Kilmarnock. Although I would dearly love to be at Ibrox for the game, my priority is, and will continue to be, to assist the administrators in any way I can to bring this process to as speedy a conclusion as possible.”

    David Whitehouse of administrators Duff & Phelps said: “Craig Whyte has co-operated with us since our appointment as administrators and we believe his announcement brings further stability to the situation as we conduct the administration of Rangers’ business.

    “As administrators we will continue to ensure the club’s business is run seamlessly as a plan to exit administration is developed.”

  16. Sir Reginald Loudpants

    has anyone read vanguard bears lately?

    its funny!

  17. TheBlackKnight

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2012/feb/17/scotland-media-rangers

    In case you missed it!! Please circulate, email , tweet, trend!!

  18. jim mullins

    Great articles, well done. Yesterday Mr Whyte resigned from Merchant Corporate Recovery and Merchant Strategic Renewal. I worked in Russia for a while. It was a common practice to but companies using the future cash flows of the business that was being acquired and then to strip out the assets leaving the liabilities behind. Maybe there is a Mr Whyteski out there

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