A frantic morning of tidying sees Joshua and I ready to face the Mrs, we head to Athens shortly. Ahead of that I suggest a new gender test for the Olympics. In the main podcast I look at bitcoin, Argo Blockchain (ARB), Fevertree (FEVR), coping on a meltdown day, Nightcap (NGHT) and St James House (SJH).
Those who read my From Athens with Love dossier on InternetQ (INTQ) in 2015 when it was AIM listed will have been in no doubt that its users and sales were pure fiction. Today there is final vindication for me, this is yet another massive fraud from Greece.
The photos below are from the roof of the Athens hotel in which I am holed up after a day of travel hell which I discuss and offer a warning to the trio of bearcast listeners coming to join me for the olive harvest shortly. In the bearcast I look at Inspirit (INSP), 13 Energy (E3E), Eurasia Mining (EUA) which is run by a top banana bt has a joke valuation and FinnCap (FCAP) which has a joke valuation in light of today's interims and is run by a top er... it is run by Sam Smith.
You will remember our extensive coverage of Folli Follie the Greek fraud exposed by Gabriel Grego, one of my free podcast guests today, How I remember being chased from its HQ 20 miles North of Athens by security guards trying to grab my camera! The ghost of Folli Follie (now in administration) is back in the news as Links of London, a British chain it owns has itself gone into administration. 350 jobs are at risk.
It was not that long ago that burly security guards from Follie Follie were trying to grab my camera and chasing me as I door-stepped the company at its HQ 20 miles North of Athens. I guess they are unemployed now as forensic accountants Alvarez & Marsal have now published a report showing the massive fraud we and, more particularly, Gabriel Grego alleged was indeed true,.
This may be the main bearcast or it may be a bonus. It all depends on how I feel and daughter Olaf feels after I pick her up at 4.30 AM Athens time in the Greek capital. In this I look at Falanx (FLX), the red flag of a rapid change in advisers ref Halosource (HALO) but also in more general terms and then at a shameless performance by John Meyer of SP Angel as he is interviewed by Justin the Clown over Bluejay (JAY). Meyer is at best an idiot, at worst he is covering up for what appears to be market abuse by his employer in relation to Bluejay shares. I will not let this one go. The clown's podcast is torture to listen to but can be found HERE if you feel you deserve 20 minutes of torture.
Today's podcast is recorded ahead of an overnight trip to Athens to pick up daughter Olaf. It is not a trip that I look forward to greatly. In it I discuss EVR Holdings (EVRH), HaloSource (HALO) and Frontera Resources (FRR).
Globo (GBO) was a fraud which claimed to have cash but did not and is now bust. Its downfall was precipitated by ShareProphets publishing a Gabriel Grego dossier after the FT and snot-gobbler Dan McCrum merely tipped off the CEO allowing him to dump all his shares and failed to publish. Now the Financial Reporting Council says that it is letting auditor Grant Thornton off the hook and dropping its enquiry.
It seems like just yesterday that burly security guards tried to grab my camera forcing me to flee as I tried to doorstep the 1 billion Euro fraud Folli Follie at its North of Athens HQ. Since then the shares have been suspended, a criminal enquiry began, the former auditors have admitted that 2017 accounts were pure fiction and now… Folli has put itself into the Greek equivalent of Chapter 11.
Another day, another release from fraud Follie Follie to the Greek Stock Exchange and, as we all suspected, it is the bogus Chinese operations that were at the heart of this fraud.
I travel Easyjet (EZY) often. In the winter it is Bristol to Athens and back, in the summer it is Gatwick to Kalamata and back. Usually it is no worse and no better than any other budget airline. Not that I really care but I just want to point out a quite obvious scam it inflicts on its passengers.
Having collapsed by another 25% yesterday to just 4.8 Euro shares in Folli Follie were suspended on the Athens stock exchange first thing today prompting a bearcast ouzo. Initially the company told the Greek media that it was because of all we nasty bears spreading false rumours and creating a disorderly market. Then at 11.30 GMT the awful truth came out.
For reasons to do with burly security guards explained here I could not record this at Folli Follie. That is probably good as I can now explain the similarities with another Greek fraud (Globo), the looming deadlines and the unresolved questions which make this company likely to implode. That is not to say it does not have some real operations, the photos below are of its flagship store at 19 Ermou St in Athens, which I visited on Monday
Folli Folie, the Greek fraudsters, today attempted to refuse claims by Gabriel Grego that they were lying, inter alia, about store numbers and so in a release to the Athens Stock Exchange published a list of 587 stores. It has taken me one hour to prove clear and big lies on this list as I shall demonstrate below.
Shares in Greek uber scam Folli Follie are off by c30% following the publication of Globo (GBO) destroyer Gabriel Grego's damning dossier last night HERE. It has now issued a denial and threatened legal action. I have spoken to Grego.
You may remember that in a podcast (HERE) on 4th March I recalled a horrific 22 hour trip from Kalamata, via Athens Airport, to Bristol made hellish not just by snow but by the behaviour of EasyJet (EZJ) staff who repeatedly lied to me and fellow passengers. last night I sent that podcast to EasyJet CEO Johan Lundgren with a note:
I leave Kalamata shortly but when I get to Athens will there be a flight to take me home to Bristol or will I be dossing down at the Sofitel until the next flight on Monday? As I ponder that matter I consider the great news for we shareholders from Big Sofa (BST) and the real import of today's shocking news that Beaufort Securities has gone tits up. Postscript from Kalamata bus station: Bristol flights have been cancelled. With frightening efficiency I have transferred to a Gatwick flight. I am now working out how to get from Gatwick to Bristol in the middle of the night.
I booked my ticket to Athens last night. No doubt the Bulletin Board Morons will assume that I am running scared of the patron saint of fraudsters, the convicted felon, twice bankrupted man barred from being a company director, St Aidan of Banstead. No, I fear not Mr Earley but I head to Greece soon for very different reasons and may be offline for a few days.
As a mega bear of Management Resource Solutions (MRS) from almost the moment this crock of Turkish floated on the AIM casino, its ever worsening problems make me think that at 2.23 AM at Athens airport it is almost ouzo o'clock. The latest update is just so grim.
Back at Easyjet (EZJ), as CEO Carolyn McCall agonises about how she can get more women flying her planes, her Customer (lack of) Services Teams has emailed a apology to those folks whose Cretan holidays it trashed on Wednesday, including me. The apology is vague and does not wash. I Fiske it below.
Carolyn McCall the CEO of Easyjet (EZJ) is obsessed with how many of her pilots have willies. She wants more women in the cockpit. I dont care who drives her bloody planes she has ruined my day with appalling customer service and I now find myself tired and bad tempered at Athens Airport, not having a stiff ouzo as planned in Crete. As such Ms McCall deserves a bearcast special.
It would have been an added bonus if Goldenport (GPRT) - heading to zero as Nigel explains here - was to had its headquarters in the same Athens neighbourhood as InternetQ (INTQ) and Globo (GBO) because, as it happens, I am in the mighty Hellenic Republic on the date of its EGM on March 31st. However I have just checked out its HQ on Google maps as you can see below...
In April 2014 I visited the Athens headquarters of Globo (GBO) to shoot some photos and record a uber-sceptical video as you can see HERE. At the time most Bulletin Board Morons were big Globo fans and I was derided as a mad stalker. Then a few weeks ago we exposed Globo as a fraud HERE whiler the rest of the gutless British press - notably snot-gobbler Dan McCrum at the FT - sat silent until the shares were suspended. Today I thought I'd pop along to see what was left. The answer, as you can see from the photos below, is nothing. Compare these photos with my last lot HERE. Globo's headquarters are walking distance from those of InternetQ (INTQ) and so I recorded a Globo special video which is is also below.
So Mr Richard Penny of Legal & General, as well as the toscas from Tosser Fund, you still believe in InternetQ (INTQ) - as Mr Penny believed in Globo (GBO) - even after the first three exposes I have run on its dodgy dossier, its weedy rebutal to From Athens With Love. Well try this, with assistance from the Global Shorting Conspiracy (GSC) man on the ground in Poland.
My series rebutting the weedy rebuttal provided by InternetQ (INTQ) to my From Athens with Love article HERE, continues. You can read Part 1 HERE, Part 2 HERE and now we move on. Do you still believe what InternetQ tells you?
Yes, it is indeed InternetQ (INTQ) which joined the AIM Casino exactly five years ago today claiming to be a "profitable and cash generative company" as it raised £6.8 million at 120p giving it a market capitalisation of £31 million with 25,697,435 shares in issue . Hmmmmmm.
Yesterday saw part one of my demolition of InternetQ's (INTQ) weedy rebuttal of my article, from Athens with love, of last week. Before I move onto more juicy points, the accounting policies do deserve two more mentions.
Today's From Athens with Love report from ShareProphets sent shares in Greece based AIM listed InternetQ (INTQ) tumbling by more than 50% at one point. Finally we get a weedy but all to predictable response and on the back of it I have cut my target price (for the whole company) from 1 drachma to half a drachma.
Thanks entirely to the courageous investigative journalism of the snot gobbler Dan “microscopic cojones” McCrum at the FT, ex Globo (GBO) boss Costis Papadimitrakopoulos is now formally in the soup – the company has reported him for fraud to “the appropriate law enforcement agencies in the UK, Greece and Cyprus.”
A brief podcast as I prepare to spend a morning on the beach with the Mrs. Then it is off to Athens. She thinks she is seeing a la dee da play. I am heading there for riot porn as the Greece Grexit crisis hots up again. Is Tsipras planning to betray the Hellenic Republic? Will he get away with it? Will Greece be booted out of the Euro anyway by the Krauts? Then a few words on the farce at Sefton as Jimmyliar Ellerton tries to make it go bankrupt via legal means. And then to the con Worthington.
As I wander up to the most excellent Anthrapology café one last time for a leave Athens on a boat tonight to continue my odyssey, I stroll past three of four banks and they are open. Well sort of.
Earlier today I reflected on how not that much had changed in the district of Athens in which I am staying. But then it struck me that something had changed: the roads are almost empty.
And so I wandered into Omonia Square in Athens, not a place to stroll around for too long. Athens was an all almost white City thirty years ago. I think my white face was in the minority today. There is an air of menace about the district and I was glad to walk briskly back towards Syntagma Square. But as I looked around I was accosted.
Think Stoke Newington in London. Edgy, lefty but with a stack of affluent middle class Guardian readers among the poor. That’s the sort of neighbourhood of Athens in which I am staying. Everywhere there are Oxi posters – this area is voting No heavily in the referendum on Sunday. Even the businesses display posters – they are not afraid of losing customers because this area is heavily Oxi. One poster (see below) says nothing but says it all.
Who said capitalism is dead in Greece? The stalls selling Greek and Oxi flags were doing a roaring trade. In fact everyone who could was draping themselves in the blue and white of Greece. Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel. And in a referendum both sides have to claim the patriotic high ground.
Some folk say that it is better to travel than to arrive. I guess they have never travelled on a 5.45 AM Easyjet flight from Gatwick. But my first sight in Greece was a pure delight. I was wandering from the plane into the terminal behind this stunning Greek goddess wearing a light but long skirt. Suddenly a gust of wind caught her skirt blowing it right up above her waist. Little was left to the imagination. Okay that is not true - I imagined away. Sadly I have no photo of this daughter of Athena. But now in the centre of Athens I bring you the first poverty porn.
The Mrs has given me the green light and in fact is almost certain to join me as I head off to Greece ahead of Sunday’s referendum for a touch of riot porn and poverty porn blogging from Syntagma Square in Athens.
High drama tonight as Greek PM Alex Tspiras has called a referendum for July 5: should Greece accept the misery of the latest proposals from the banksters or go bust? Events will move rapidly during the next eight days - we may well see the banks shut down as soon as Monday. Already there are long lines outside ATMs in Athens. Is Tsipras right to call a vote? Yes. What should my neighbours in Greece vote? No! They should vote for default and I hope that Tsipras will lead a campaign for such a vote. July 5th could be freedom day, independence day, a glorious day for the Hellenic Republic. It is time for Greece to tell the EU and the banksters where to stick it.
Jim Mellon says that the Greeks should build a statue in my honour as on Friday I opened a bank account in Greece and made a deposit. Okay it was only 10 Euro, I need to put in another 3,990 Euro to get my residency papers so I can buy a car, a bike and a gun, but it was a start. But the scenes at the National Bank in Kalamata were of chaos, you could smell the panic and they were being replicated at banks across Greece.
After yesterday's podcast, it was put to me by a Euro loving loon (but good man) on twitter that Greece defaulting on its debts and leaving the Euro would be bad news for me, as my wife owns a small property in Greece – the Greek Hovel. He is correct: anyone with Greek assets would take an immediate hit after Grexit. But here is why I support the move anyway.
Right that is it. I am off to the airport and to Greece. I am knackered. I pity the poor sod next to me on the flight as I shall snore all the way to Athens. I leave you with a final Bearcast of the day covering Quindell, Concha, Amiad Water and profits warnings/equity valuations.
I have just booked my flight to Athens next week. RyanAir (RYA) was the cheapest flight but once you add in the charge for taking one full suitcase the gap between it and British Airways narrowed. And do I really want to trek out to Stansted rather than go to Heathrow on the tube which is much cheaper for me? The cost gap narrows again. And then O’Leary’s website tried to nickel and dime me on insurance and I just gave up and went with BA.