FCA issues warnings over Hanover Merchant Capital and Liberty House Capital

On Monday the FCA issued a scam warning about the activities of Hanover Merchant Capital and its reboot scam Liberty House Capital.

We believe this firm has been providing financial services or products in the UK without our authorisation. Find out why to be especially wary of dealing with this unauthorised firm and how to protect yourself from scammers.

Hanover Merchant Capital claimed to provide "annuity type income" returns of over 20% per year from investing in bottled water from New Zealand. I reviewed the investment in June 2018. In November 2018 the company did a runner, closing its website and ceasing to communicate with investors.

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Total losses expected for Bury FC car park investors; Bury FC debt sold for £70,000

The administrators of Mederco, which ran a number of unregulated investment schemes including one involving spaces in the Bury FC car park, have released a six-monthly progress report.

Since the initial proposals in March, a secured creditor has emerged, Capital Bridging Finance Solutions. CBFS loaned £333,000 to Mederco secured on a basement car park in Bradford. Mederco director and former Bury owner Stewart Day had told the administrators that this had been repaid. CBFS have now told the administrators this was inaccurate and that £152,291 remains outstanding.

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We review Verto Homes – former CrowdCube startup heads for the unregulated bond market

Verto Homes is offering unregulated bonds paying 10% per year for a 5 year term.

The bonds offer the opportunity to exit after 12 months, however this will naturally depend on Verto Homes having enough cash available to pay back investors who wish to do so.

Funds raised are to be used to build zero carbon smart homes.

Continue reading for a review of Verto Homes' bonds.

Harewood Associates administrators report: £40 million loaned to related parties, at most £4.2 million remains

Harewood Associates Logo

The administrators of collapsed unregulated property investment scheme Harewood Associates, Begbies Traynor, have released their first report.

Subsequent to the report, Harewood director Peter Kiely has signed a Statement of Affairs detailing how much of the company's assets remain to be realised to investors.

According to the Statement of Affairs, Harewood loaned a total of £40.5 million to other related companies.

Of this, only £3.9 million is expected to be realised.

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Solidus Technologies files first accounts, only £944k raised of £10 million target

Solidus Technologies, which issued unregulated bonds paying up to 13% per year for a three year term, has issued its first accounts for the period ending March 2019.

The accounts show that the company raised only £944,000 in its bonds as at March 2019, having said in its investment literature that it was targeting a raise of £10 million.

If the muted interest in its bonds disappointed the company, that hasn't stopped it plowing ahead with its plans to generate returns by mining cryptocurrency.

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SRA issues fraud alert to Allansons investors

The Solicitors Regulation Authority has warned investors in the stricken Allansons litigation funding investment scheme that an individual is falsely purporting to represent the SRA as part of a recovery fraud.

Allansons LLP ran a litigation funding scheme offering returns of up to 50% over a 6-18 month term, which third-party introducers claimed was "low risk" and "100% secure". By September 2018 investors were complaining about the lack of any returns, and in May 2019 the SRA shut Allansons down.

The individual, named "John / Jonathan Holt", claims to represent the SRA and that investors will get their money back if they hand over 5% of the total invested. Naturally if they hand over their 5% they will never see it again. The individual may be using other aliases.

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We review Whisky Cask Company – investment in whisky offering returns of 8 – 12% per year

Whisky Cask Company offers investment in casks of Scotch whisky.

Whisky Cask Company describes its role as "facilitating the sale". The actual filling of the casks is done by the Malt Whisky Company.

Casks are matured for a minimum of three years, after which they can be sold on the market. Whisky Cask Company projects returns of 8 - 12% per year. It claims the investment is "A Sure-Fire Investment for The Future" and that investing in whisky "gives increased financial security — products cannot go bust in the way a company can".

Continue reading for a review of Whisky Cask Company's investment.