Monday, 8 November 2010

The Con in Connaught

Connaught Partnerships, Labour's much loved social housing FM provider, in the hands of Labour's favourite consultants KPMG in administration for the last two months, was thought to have owed £46m to creditors. 'Building' reports this morning that auditors have found a further 50,000 unpaid invoices, pushing the likely debt level to around £100m. 

Can anyone please explain how even a large company can 'mislay' 50,000 invoices? Really?


Span Ows said...

I wouldn't mind betting a few Labour MPs have money in this...that they don't want to lose!

Demetrius said...

Span Ows beat me to it. I can think of a few names, I wonder if they are the same that other people will think of? There is another big similar outfit currently being propped up by RBS, our very own peoples bank. This one also has interesting contacts with the Labour Party. But the family concerned were careful enough to cosy up to the Conservatives as well.

Umbongo said...


You can view the Connaught audited accounts for 2009 here. Beware though, the self-congratulatory preening is unbearable.

More to the point, the auditors (PWC) gave Connaught a completely clean bill of health. Unluckily for PWC, being the auditor of record, it missed out on the (highly remunerative) administration work. BTW, the very same PWC gave this clean bill of health to Northern Rock's 2006 accounts. I know PWC are one of the "Big 4" accountancy firms but isn't there a pattern emerging here? If there is a pattern - or even a prima facie pattern - why is PWC not being investigated for, at the least, incompetence?

Scrobs... said...

Surely you don't mean 'Rok' Demetrius?

Anonymous said...

Serco manage to lose my invoices all the time, despite being e-mailed, faxed or posted, so no surprise that Connaught do the same.

Mind you, all invoices sent to the Serco Shared Service Centre(SSSC) in Hampshire seem to magically wend their way to SSSC India instead.

Perhaps Connaught used the same postman?

A Poster said...

Anon: They must use the UPS service. A while back I had occasion to send an urgent letter on a Friday morning from Kuala Lumpur to Jersey. I took it to the local DHL office but the fellow behind the counter insisted that as the letter was travelling over a weekend, UPS, with whom the office was shared, would be quicker (albeit marginally more expensive than DHL whose offices were apparently closed on weekends).

I tracked it's progress on their website and was expecting to find a simple KL-LHR entry. Instead what I saw was:: KL-Schenzen-Bangkok-Bombay-Frankfurt-Stanstead-St Helier.. No doubt they have their reasons for such a round-about itinerary but it worked just fine and the letter was delivered by 10am on Monday.