By Cliff Weight, Director, ShareSoc
I encourage members to join the Wellesley Investors Action Group. You can do so here https://www.facebook.com/groups/wellesleyp2pcreditorsactiongroup
Neil Taylor has brought this to my attention. ShareSoc is very willing to blog and tweet about this and encourage all those who have lost money in Wellesley to consider joining the Wellesley Investors Action Group. They have 300 members already which is a good start. But there were 11,700 investors affected, so ideally all should join the Action Group. The 336 members have suffered collectively a loss of around £3 million, but, to be able to get the lawyers and litigation funders excited and motivated, a claim of £10 to £20 million is needed, typically.
The Wellesley Investors Action Group state that matters of real concern to them are to be investigated by government agencies.
The scandalous details were written up and exposed in a Daily Mail article last September:
and an earlier article in 2017
Readers may have heard of LCF, which was bigger and more high profile than Wellesley, but covers much the same issues.
On 12 Dec 2020, the FCA confirmed proposals to permanently ban the mass-marketing of speculative illiquid securities – including speculative mini-bonds – to retail investors. A temporary ban was introduced without consultation in January following serious concerns that speculative mini-bonds were being promoted to retail investors who neither understood the risks involved, nor could afford the potential financial losses. The new rules will apply from 1 January 2021 and include a small number of changes to the temporary ban, following a consultation launched in June. See https://www.fca.org.uk/news/press-releases/fca-confirms-speculative-mini-bond-mass-marketing-ban
The ban on the mass marketing of illiquid securities comes after a series of scandals involving unregulated bonds, including the collapse of London Capital & Finance (LCF) last year.
Former Court of Appeal judge Elizabeth Gloster, in her report on mini-bonds, blasted FCA foot-dragging and described the regulator’s conduct as ‘unacceptable’.
The FCA appears to have been asleep at the wheel as we noted in the ShareSoc/UKSA joint response to HM Treasury consultation ‘Regulatory Framework for Approval of Financial Promotions’ see https://www.sharesoc.org/consultation/sharesocuksa-make-joint-response-to-hm-treasury-consultation-regulatory-framework-for-approval-of-financial-promotions/
Neil Taylor has briefed me on Wellesley. Neil is a ShareSoc member, who joined over a year ago – he joined he tells me because “I appreciate the empathy that ShareSoc shown towards Sirius Minerals investors at the time. It was gallant and I shared the same view.”
Neil is also a member of the Leigh Day Claimants Committee which has just been announced and I congratulate him on this very important appointment and I wish him well. Readers will be aware that ShareSoc launched its Woodford campaign in November 2020 and have endorsed the Leigh Day Claim.