World-renowned charities and holiday-makers lose out in holiday company failure
Simon Smith and Nicholas Capsey, both directors of Global Enduro Ltd, a holiday tour operator, have been disqualified for a total of 14 years for failing to ensure that at least £207,055 raised for charity under commercial participation agreements was paid to the charities, and for failing to ensure that adequate insurance protected at least 39 package tour holiday-makers, who between them lost over £104,000 when the company failed.
One of the directors was disqualified in June 2015 and the other has now given an undertaking not to act as a director, having previously contested disqualification.
Mr Smith provided an undertaking early in the proceedings and was disqualified for a period of 8 years from 4 June 2015.
Mr Capsey provided a staunch defence to the proceedings, which were due for trial in January 2016. In the days before trial a suitable settlement was reached and a 6 year undertaking, from 12 February 2016, was accepted from Mr Capsey.
As a result of the undertakings, both directors are prevented from directly or indirectly becoming involved in the promotion, formation or management of a limited company.
Global Enduro Ltd was a travel company that mainly ran motorbike adventure holidays, supporting a number of charities by way of a fee charged to every participant over and above any further sponsorship raised by the participants. The aim was to raise funds for charities via Commercial Participation Agreements.
The company’s previous clients included both Prince Harry and Prince William, who took part in a motorbike rally organised by Global Enduro in 2008.
Charities owed money as a result of the company’s failure include Sentebale (a charity founded by Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho), Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, the Rainbow Trust, UNICEF and Adventure Ashram.
Following a social media campaign against it, the company experienced a drop in bookings. The financial difficulties caused by this led the directors to conclude the company could not continue to trade and the company went into administration.
Mr Smith and Mr Capsey admitted failing to ensure that the company complied with rules governing charities.
Furthermore, Global Enduro Ltd broke the Package Holiday Regulations by failing to put in place Insurance protection for its package holiday customers, also breaching its own terms and conditions, which clearly stated that the company would do so to protect customers in the event of its insolvency. As a result, at least 39 customers found that they were unprotected when the company was placed into administration. They lost over £104,000 between them for package holidays they had booked and paid for.
Mark Bruce, Chief Investigator of the Insolvency Service, said:
When directors of a company do not comply with legislation that is designed to protect customers, and avoidable losses result, the Insolvency Service will fully investigate the circumstances and take action where appropriate.
Notes to editors
Global Enduro Ltd (Company Registration Number 04833131) was incorporated on 15 July 2003 and commenced trading on that date, providing tour operator activities. The company ceased trading on 24 January 2013 and was placed into administration on 28 January 2013. The company’s principal trading address was 10 Argyle Street, Bath, BA2 4BQ.
Nicholas Capsey is of Bath, Somerset and his date of birth is 17 March 1975.
Simon James Smith is of Bath, Somerset and his date of birth is 18 July 1972.
Global Enduro Limited went into administration on 28th January 2013, with assets of £18,704, liabilities of £498,672 and a deficiency as regards creditors of £479,968. The company had share capital of £10, making a total deficiency of £479,978.
Mr Capsey and Mr Smith admitted failing to ensure that the company complied with The Charitable Institutions (Fund-Raising) Regulations 1994 and The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992.
A disqualification order has the effect that without specific permission of a court, a person with a disqualification cannot:
- act as a director of a company
- take part, directly or indirectly, in the promotion, formation or management of a company or limited liability partnership
- be a receiver of a company’s property
In addition that person cannot act as an insolvency practitioner and there are many other restrictions are placed on disqualified directors by other regulations.
Disqualification undertakings are the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order but do not involve court proceedings.
Further information on director disqualifications and restrictions can be found here.
The Insolvency Service administers the insolvency regime, investigating all compulsory liquidations and individual insolvencies (bankruptcies) through the Official Receiver to establish why they became insolvent. It may also use powers under the Companies Act 1985 to conduct confidential fact-finding investigations into the activities of live limited companies in the UK. In addition, the agency authorises and regulates the insolvency profession, deals with disqualification of directors in corporate failures, assesses and pays statutory entitlement to redundancy payments when an employer cannot or will not pay employees, provides banking and investment services for bankruptcy and liquidation estate funds and advises ministers and other government departments on insolvency law and practice.
Further information about the work of the Insolvency Service, and how to complain about financial misconduct, is available.
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Published: 17 February 2016
From: The Insolvency Service