Independent Portfolio Managers goes into liquidation

Independent Portfolio Managers logo

Independent Portfolio Managers, the minibond promoter which was hit by a slew of Ombudsman complaints for its role in the collapse of Secured Energy Bonds and Providence Bonds, has gone into liquidation.

When I last reported on the company in late October I overlooked that a creditor had already petitioned to wind up the company. This petition was heard two weeks ago, and the winding up commenced on 14 November.

Interestingly, the creditor who brought the petition against Independent Portfolio Managers was the administrator of Secured Energy Bonds.

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Krono Partners administration report: £4 million of investors’ money depends mostly on a “Company X” in the Cayman Islands

Krono Partners logo

Last month the administrators of Krono Partners, top-10 accountancy firm Smith & Williamson, published their initial report into the company.

Smith & Williamson was appointed after Krono Partners stopped paying interest on its bonds in March 2018. This was apparently due to bank accounts operated by Jade State Wealth, a subsidiary of Krono’s escrow partner Accounting Worx Limited, being frozen.

Why Krono Partners has been unable to find another payment administrator, if this was the only thing preventing it from making payments, and has had to undertake the dramatic (and expensive) step of going into administration, is not addressed by the administrators.

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MJS / Colarb Capital in the Evening Standard: CEO Shaun Prince claims “all our investors are fine”, calls them liars and blames them for investing

MJS Capital and Colarb Capital logos

Troubled unregulated bond issuer MJS Capital was the subject of an article in the Evening Standard on Wednesday.

The article focuses on the worries of a handful of investors who loaned money to MJS Capital via its bonds, have not received interest on time, and have attempted to redeem their bonds. Some have succeeded in redeeming their bonds after a long delay, others are still waiting to receive their money.

Such complaints will be familiar to anyone who has read the comments section of our original review or related articles.

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We review Finnigan-McNeil Properties’ unregulated investment in property development paying 10% – 21.1% per year

Finnigan-McNeill Properties logo

Finnigan-McNeil Properties offers investment in property renovation with an advertised 10% Return On Investment (ROI).

Investors invest in individual properties which Finnigan-McNeil renovates and either sells or rents out.

Finnigan-McNeil's website makes clear however that the company is committed to a 10% "guaranteed" return regardless of whether the property the investor invests in makes a 10% return on sale.

Continue reading for a review of the Finnigan-McNeil Properties investment opportunity.

UCG Trust disappears?

In February I reviewed UCG Trust, which claimed to be a US-based company offering P2P investments paying up to 13.5% per year, while “eliminating all the risk to investors”.

The company operated illegally in both the USA and the UK, in the first case by offering unregulated securities in the US without authorisation from the SEC, and in the second by offering financial promotions in the UK without authorisation from the FCA.

UCG Trust’s website, ucgtrust.com, is currently down. Archive.org last recorded the website as up and running in April 2018, but it currently shows a domain parking page. A couple of phone numbers formerly provided on the website were answered by answering machines that appeared to have nothing to do with UCG.

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Magna Global (aka MIX1 and MIX2) – we review their unregulated bonds paying 11.7% – 12% a year

Magna Group (aka Magna Asset Management) is offering unregulated bonds paying interest over 12 months or 18 months as follows:

  • 12 months: Pays interest of 12% over the one-year term, rolled up and paid out at the end of the year. Issued by MIX2 Limited.
  • 18 months: Pays interest of 18% over an eighteen month term, rolled up and paid out at the end of the 18 months, which is equivalent to 11.7% annual interest on an Compound Annual Growth Rate basis. Issued by Magna Investments X Ltd, aka MIX1.
Investment in the 12 month MIX2 loans has a minimum investment of £30,000, while investment in the 18 month MIX1 loans has a minimum investment of £10,000.

The lower minimum investment is the only concrete reason I can think of for investing in the longer term loans, given that they pay the same rate of simple interest despite having a longer term (and therefore having higher liquidity and default risk).

Continue reading for a review of Magna Group's bonds.

Tyram Lakes (via Rothgen Capital) – we review their unregulated bonds paying 8% per year

Tyram Lakes logo

Rothgen is offering unregulated bonds paying 8% a year to raise funds for the Tyram Lakes eco lodge.

The bonds are currently being advertised via TV adverts on the Sky Property channel.

Note that while the Rothgen group of companies includes an FCA-regulated company authorised to provide advice (Connected Financial Services Ltd which trades as Rothgen Capital), the investment itself is unregulated, being a corporate loan note issued by Rothgen Management Limited (an unregulated company).

Continue reading for a review of the Tyram Lakes bond.