Creditors in desperate fight to get £1.5m owed by Bradford Bulls (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Creditors in desperate fight to get £1.5m owed by Bradford Bulls
Creditors are facing a desperate struggle to claw back cash owed by the former struggling Bradford Bulls company which had run up £1.5 million in debts.
The Telegraph & Argus can exclusively reveal the contents of a report by The P&A Partnership, administrators of Bradford Bulls Holdings Limited, which shows the sheer scale of money owed by the defunct company and a seven-page list of companies and businesses who are still waiting for payments.
It also reveals the insolvency firm, which has run the club since it entered administration on June 26, worked out its own costs up to August 24 amount to £172,551.90 – with it staff working for an average rate of £205 an hour.
Included in that figure are 235 hours of work by partners of the firm, which include joint-administrator Brendan Guilfoyle, costing £75,360.
The report, seen by the T&A, shows creditors of the former company include Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), owed more than £500,00 in unpaid tax and National Insurance, Bradford Council, due £45,071 in business rates, and Integrated Bradford LEP Ltd, which should have been paid £186,100 for its work.
But business owners last night spoke of how they are ready to “fight” for their money now Bradford Bulls Holdings Limited has been sold to Bradford businessman Omar Khan and former Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe’s OK Bulls Limited for an undisclosed sum.
Robyn Morrison, who runs Panache cheerleading school, which is owed almost £4,000, said she had filled out a form for the administrator and hoped members of the Bulls’ Bullettes squad would now be paid for their work.
She said: “The cheerleaders have continued to perform without pay since the club went into administration, but they should be paid for performances done under contract.
“They’ve done it as a gesture of goodwill, but for the girls it’s their part-time job. I’m going to fight for their money.I’ve filled out a form for the administrator, but I don’t know what will happen next. I don’t know who to ring up or speak to. We will have to see what happens.”
A boss at County Catering Special Events, which has been providing corporate hospitality at Odsal , said he did not yet know if it would be able to claw back £18,762 owed by the previous company.
Trevor Landsall told the T&A in June how it had been continuing to provide pink champagne, canapes and a choice menu during home games and special dinners, but had insisted on being paid up front.
He said yesterday he had not had the opportunity to inquire about how much money owed would be repaid, but knew a long list of creditors would all be vying for their own payments.
“It’s money they worked for and they will want paying for it. You wouldn’t choose to work without getting paid.”
Graham Gilderdale, of Direct Cleaning Bradford, who has provided cleaning services at the club for more than 20 years, said his firm was owed more than £6,000 but was “in the dark” over whether money would be repaid.
“I do a lot of work down here and had never chased money because I’d always get paid. I hope I get some of the money back, and that’s all I can do – hope.
“But there are going to be a fair few people at their door.”
The creditors’ report, compiled by joint administrator Christopher White, reveals new details of Bradford Bulls’ Holdings financial meltdown – including how its bank overdraft facility was withdrawn in March.
It says: “As trading losses continued to accrue, the company suffered further cashflow difficulties. In an effort to aid cashflow, the company appealed to fans to pledge their support by donating monies to assist the continued operation of the club. The pledges from fans raised just over £400,000, which enabled the company to discharge a number of short term liabilities.”
Mr White said directors of the company sought financial advice from The P&A Partnership on May 14, where it was found that the company’s “cash position” was insufficient to pay liabilities due to HMRC.
“While the company was actively seeking external investment in order to fund trading losses to the end of the season, it was clear that the company would have to act quickly to avoid potential winding-up proceedings from HMRC,” he added.
“It was established the level of investment required in order to fund these losses was in the region of £1.2 million.”
Directors filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators on June 12, before a bidding process began to find new owners for the club.