Residential estate agency services in the Burnham-on-Sea area: Director Disqualification

The CMA is seeking the disqualification of a number of directors of estate agencies found to have broken competition law.

Court proceedings seeking director disqualifications

30 April 2019: The proceedings against Mr Graham Thompson, former director of Saxons PS Limited, were discontinued following the acceptance by the Competition and Markets Authority on 29 April 2019 of a competition disqualification undertaking from Mr Thompson under which Mr Thompson undertakes not to act as a director of a company for a period of 5 years. Proceedings against Mr Martin are ongoing.

27 February 2019: On 26 February 2019 the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) issued proceedings in the High Court of Justice, Business and Property Courts seeking the disqualification of 2 directors:

  • Mr Michael Martin, formerly a director of Gary Berryman Estate Agents Limited, The Property Group (2010) Limited and Warne Investments Limited
  • Mr Graham Thompson, formerly a director of Saxons PS Limited

The proceedings against both directors arose from the CMA’s decision on 31 May 2017 that Gary Berryman Estate Agents Limited, Warne Investments Limited and Saxons PS Limited together with 4 other estate agencies, entered into an anti-competitive agreement to fix a minimum level of commission fees for the provision of residential sales services in the Burnham-on-Sea area.

The CMA issued these proceedings under section 9A of the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986 following an investigation into the directors’ conduct in relation to the breach of competition law. It is now for the court to decide whether to make a disqualification order against each director.

Provided they continue to comply with the terms of their leniency agreement, the CMA will not seek the disqualification of the co-operating directors of 3 of the estate agents, which qualified for leniency under the CMA’s leniency policy.

Director disqualification undertakings

10 April 2018: The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that David Baker, former director of estate agency Abbott and Frost Estate Agents Limited (Abbott and Frost), has given a disqualification undertaking not to act as a director of a company for 3 years and 6 months.

Julian Frost, another director of Abbott and Frost, has given a disqualification undertaking not to act as a director of a company for 3 years.

Under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, the CMA may seek the disqualification of an individual from holding a company directorship or performing certain roles in relation to a company for a specified period where that individual was a director of a company which has breached competition law and their conduct makes them unfit to be a director. The CMA may seek disqualification by a court order or legally binding undertaking.

The disqualifications follow the CMA’s decision on 31 May 2017 that Abbott and Frost, together with 5 other estate agencies, entered into an anti-competitive agreement to fix a minimum level of commission fees for the provision of residential sales services in the Burnham-on-Sea area.

Contacts

CMA press office

press@cma.gov.uk or call 020 3738 6460

Assistant project director

James Granshaw: james.granshaw@cma.gov.uk or call 020 3738 6239

Published 10 April 2018
Last updated 30 April 2019 + show all updates
  1. Disqualification undertaking published.
  2. The page has been updated to include information about court proceedings seeking the disqualification of 2 directors, issued by the CMA.
  3. First published.