Published 25 November 2008
The 3 directors of National Finance 2000 Ltd – Allan Ludlow, Tony Banbrook & Carol Braithwaite – have been banned from acting as company directors as they await a depositions hearing on prospectus & financial reporting charges.
Deputy Registrar of Companies Peter Barker said today Mr Ludlow & Ms Braithwaite were both prohibited for 4½ years and Mr Banbrook for 4 years, all from 14 October.
Mr Barker ruled that the 3 directors had mismanaged National Finance (among other companies) and it was this mismanagement that, at least partly, contributed to the company’s failure. The mismanagement allegations included reckless trading, failure to comply with its prospectus, breach of director’s duties and failure to maintain adequate books & records.
Mr Barker said he considered submissions from the directors in response to the allegations and found that, “both then & now, these directors do not understand their duties & responsibilities as company directors. Previous court rulings have made it clear that directors cannot avoid their responsibilities merely by saying they did not actively participate in decisions, weren’t aware of them or relied on others.”
Mr. Barker said investors would have relied on the directors & the decisions they made: “A director must take steps to get in a position to monitor the company and to form independent judgment on the matters that should be considered by a director.’
National Finance’s principal business consisted of providing vehicle hire-purchase finance. It was put into receivership on 10 May 2006 for failing to comply with its trust deed, and then put into liquidation on 1 August 2008. Shortly after the failure of National Finance, various related companies were also put into receivership &/or liquidation. These companies were vehicle traders (importers & wholesalers) & insurance brokers or were involved in the management of the National Finance group.
3 November 2008: National Finance directors’ depositions hearing set for March
24 October 2008: National Finance directors remanded on prospectus charges
5 October 2008: National Finance 2000 directors face criminal charges
12 March 2007: National Finance receivers take principal repayments to 40c
8 October 2006: Allan Hawkins buys National Finance (Payless Cars) loan book
U column part 2, 28 May 2006: Handful of National Finance investors get money back now
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Attribution: Release from Registrar of Companies, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.