Insolvency team called in by crisis-hit bookie - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

TROUBLED bookmaker Neville Porter has appointed an insolvency expert to strike a deal with its creditors.

The Birtley firm, which suspended trading in its shares on the Alternative Investment Market and closed its online and telephone betting operations last month, has appointed Antony Batty & Company LLP, which has proposed company voluntary agreements (CVA) for the company and its two subsidiaries.

A CVA is a deal between an insolvent company and its creditors which allows the company to repay some or all of its debts from future profits or the sale of assets.

Under such agreements, a company usually pays a proportion its debts to each of its creditors over an agreed period overseen by a court-appointed supervisor. It is an alternative to liquidation and is considered one of the Government’s preferred rescue options for struggling businesses.

In a statement to the Stock Exchange, the bookie said its plans for the business’s future and for convening an extraordinary general meeting would be sent to shareholders shortly.

Neville Porter’s finance director Simon Walters said he hoped the situation would be clarified by the end of the week. He said entering into a CVA would be “an opportunity to give some value to the shareholders and creditors”.

Neville Porter floated on the AIM in February last year and launched its telephone and online betting operations shortly afterwards. However, the company made pre-tax losses of £268,756 for the six months to the end of December.

Earlier this year, managing director David Neville Porter bought racecourse pitches and leased them back to the company in a £350,000 deal, while director Brian Morton agreed to provide an interest-free advance of £80,000 in a refinancing package designed to put the business back on its feet.

Regional head of Barclays Wealth in Newcastle Andrew Miller said: “The implication would be that things are difficult, particularly in this current environment where it is difficult to raise money.

“It is not a secret that people are facing higher costs of living and to a certain extent, putting bets on is a discretionary luxury.

“If you look at Ladbrokes or William Hill, two of the biggest betting companies, their share prices have fallen quite significantly recently.”

Other news from around the same time

Tropicanas former owners want casino license back - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

Six months after they were run out of town, and with the search for a new owner nearing the finish l....


Hoosier Park getting ready to open casino - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

Owners say more than 500 new employees will be needed to operate the soon-to-open casino side of Hoo....


Court sides with casino boats - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

The S.C. Supreme Court ruled 4-1 Monday that casino boat companies do not have to report monthly wag....


Hard landing: Casino slowly being demolished - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

More than a year after closing, the Nevada Landing is history. Since mid-February, MGM Mirage has be....


Champs splash £100k at casino - Wednesday 28th of May 2008

MANCHESTER United stars toasted winning the Premier League with a £100,000 gambling spree – but l....


Bartlett scolds casino critics - Tuesday 27th of May 2008

In his most scathing remarks yet against the detractors of casino gambling, Tourism Minister Edmund ....


US slump deals bad hand to gambling - Tuesday 27th of May 2008

JAMES PACKERS publicly listed gambling company, Crown, and the poker machine maker Aristocrat are br....


Ontario man wins $1 million at poker tournament in Barcelona - Tuesday 27th of May 2008

An Ontario man who captured the million-dollar first prize at a poker tournament in Barcelona on the....


Betting chain set to rebrand - Tuesday 27th of May 2008

MORRISONS, the Edinburgh-based bookmaker, is to rebrand under a different name as it plans to expand....


Casino giant lobbying for major Irish operation - Tuesday 27th of May 2008

Executives from one of the biggest casino operators in the world have been lobbying government depar....