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Worthington - with CV's like this how can anyone take it seriously?

By Tom Winnifrith, The Sheriff of AIM | Friday 2 October 2015

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from ShareProphets). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

We all know that Craig Whyte and Aiden Earley have "colourful pasts" and that Doug Ware is a greedy bastard of no ethics as we showed again earlier HERE, but the supporting cast at joke company Worthington (WRN) are even more hilarous. How can anyone take them seriously? I am grateful to a reader who is clearly a Worthingtonologist for posting twice about Nick James. Who is Nick?

Well he sold his business to Worthington to create its media offering. So what is his track record? Over to our reader

Hard to find details as slippery Nick James uses a different birth date for his earlier directorships. Surely just a mistake, like the spelling of Spurway and Sturway?

Envelope Ltd went down owing £968,845 (£400,000 being to HMRC and Inland Revenue) according to the statement of affairs filed by the liquidator on 7 August 2006. 

JAMES, Nicholas William and ELLIS, Bronwyn, both of Hollyhedge Farm, Vee Lane, Felton, Bristol, Avon, BS40 9YE

The Insolvency of B2B Business Portfolio Limited, also with Nick James and Bronwyn Ellis (his presumably ex-girlfriend / business partner at same address) as Directors, and also a Philip John Carrington, started with a Winding Up Order on 25 May 2007, following debts to Excel Publishing Ltd, Portland Buildings, Manchester.

The Insolvency is STILL live and B2B Holdings is scheduled to be dissolved on 20 April 2016. Wonder who the other creditors are and how much went to money heaven that time?

Could it be that the assets of B2B Portfolio, including email lists, ended up being gifted to Nick’s new company “Fresh Business Thinking” as mentioned in the Mirror story about Nick James Creditor Advent Communications?

Is it this one

Company number 07350153


Company number 05709535


Company number 05541816


Company number 08249865

Here is that Story from the Mirror:


00:00, 2 AUG 2007 – UPDATED 03:55, 29 JAN 2012 – BY MIRROR.CO.UK

This would rankle. Your company provides work worth £7,000 for a client, who never pays and goes into liquidation.

So far, so normal, just an everyday story of business failure. In this case, the failure was called B2B Portfolio Ltd, which organised trade fairs. Run by Nick James and Bronwyn Ellis, Bristol-based B2B has collapsed with 18 county court judgements against it, amounting to more than £270,000.

The pair have been here before. They ran Envelope Ltd, which collapsed last year owing almost £1million.

Among the victims of B2B was public relations firm Advent Communications, which provided three months’ work creating media interest in a business fair in Coventry.

Now the firm’s getting emails from an outfit called Fresh Business Thinking, which offers tips on boosting profit and productivity, improving customer service and the like. And who are the business experts behind these gems? Yes, its James and Ellis.

“Not getting paid is never good, but it’s especially galling to then get emails from the same people advising me how I can more successfully run my business,” said Adam Dent of Advent Communications.

Over to James: “I can understand why Adam was upset. He ended up on an email list for the new company I have set up. I personally lost a lot of money when B2B went bust.”


Published: 2007/02/26 12:19:20 GMT

Fifteen people have lost their jobs at B2B Portfolio, based in Bristol.
Staff were told there was a winding up petition on the firm when they arrived at work on Friday.

Businesses which have booked and paid for a stall at forthcoming exhibitions organised by B2B do not yet know how the news will affect those events.

“We were told we cannot continue to incur any costs,” said Nick James, managing director of the company. The receivers are expected to be called in.

EDF Energy, one of the main sponsors of the business exhibitions and conferences in Wales, said in a statement: “EDF Energy has sponsored the B2B Portfolio series of exhibitions since 2004.

“The B2B Portfolio provided a unique opportunity for EDF Energy to support the local business community throughout the UK.

“We are disappointed that B2B Portfolio Ltd is no longer able to continue with the programme of exhibitions.

“Although EDF Energy has sponsored the event since its launch, the responsibility for organising and managing the exhibition series is with B2B Portfolio Ltd.

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Never miss a story.

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  1. When B2B Portfolio went bust owing HMRC and other small businesses hundreds of thousands of pounds, fraudster Nick James simply set up another company in his brother and sister-in-laws name. They carried on trading as if nothing had happened, taking the balance of charges from exhibitors who were told the alternative was losing the 50pc exhibition deposit we had already paid.


    No way to know how much money was made or lost as this company was dissolved via compulsory strike-off as a result of never filing any accounts or annual return. Maybe Ideal Business Show Ltd is yet another part of the filthy, criminal history of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards, Entrepreneur Wales Awards, Fresh Business Thinking and now Worthington Group PLC.

    Quite a heritage, littered with hundreds of thousands of pounds of debts to HMRC and numerous other creditors and countless missing Companies House filings. Shame on you Nick James, Sian James and Mark James for leaving dozens of small businesses to carry your hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of debt whilst you just carried on trading, probably taking wages and dividends.

    B2B Portfolio Ltd – Winding Up

    By CreditMan
    Wednesday, May 2, 2007


    ICC Credit, one of the UK’s leading credit reference agencies, reports that B2B Portfolio Limited has received a winding-up petition. Planned exhibitions will apparently proceed.

    B2B Portfolio Ltd, an exhibition organiser based in Bristol, ran a series of events under the trading styles of B2B London and B2B Wales in 2006. The events were considered a success by many exhibitors.

    Subsequently, the company began to take bookings for 2007 events from September last year. ICC Credit is advised that invoices were raised for 50% of the stand charge.

    Meanwhile, the company picked up some CCJs in January and February 2007 – totaling £186k.

    In February 2007 an exhibitor tells us they were informed via telephone that B2B Portfolio Ltd had received a winding up petition. The exhibitor had already paid the 50% deposit and they were advised there was no chance of a refund – with B2B Portfolio Ltd being insolvent.

    However, the exhibitor was advised that a new company, called Ideal Business Show Ltd could provide an alternative solution. This entailed Ideal Business Show Ltd collecting the outstanding 50% charge from the exhibitors. The exhibitions would then take place under new names, such as Ideal Business Show Wales, Ideal Business Show London and Ideal Business Show Thames Valley.

    - See more at: http://www.creditman.co.uk/news/b2b-portfolio-ltd-winding-up/

  2. Seems that even though Nick James turned out to have run up debts of £186k and gone insolvent setting up B2B Wales, publicly funded bodies including the Welsh Government still sponsored the phoenix B2B event according to Wales Online. Those “new organisers” were none other than Nick James’s brother and sister and they never got around to filing any accounts before the company was struck off.


    Same dumb idiots from the Welsh Government who just love giving cash to help repeated business failure Nick James run up more debts are sponsoring the Entrepreneur Wales Awards this year.



    New organisers take over former B2B event
    00:00, 29 MAR 2007 UPDATED 22:16, 29 MAR 2013

    A NEW company has been set up to take over what is being billed as one of the biggest exhibitions in Wales.

    The Ideal Business Show Wales is the successor to B2B Wales, whose organiser Bristol-based B2B Portfolio ceased trading earlier this month after running up considerable debts.

    More than 100 exhibitors had already signed up for the original 2007 event in Cardiff in June.

    Ideal Business Show Wales has given assurances that all deposits paid to B2B Portfolio would be accepted and absorbed by the new company.

    Of the original 107 exhibitors committed to the event, just two have decided not to pursue their interest in the new-look exhibition. Four of the main event partners – the Welsh Assembly Government, Newport & Gwent Chamber of Commerce, the Institute of Directors and Cardiff Chamber of Commerce – have also pledged their continuing support for the re-branded show.

    The two-day business exhibition takes place at the Millennium Stadium on June 13 and 14 with Ideal Business Show Wales aiming for at least 3,000 visitors.

    In addition to the extensive exhibition, the event will include a series of business seminars and talks from a number of high-profile guest speakers, including Gerald Ratner – former chief executive of the jewellery chain Ratners – who achieved notoriety after making a speech in which he described some of his stock as “total crap.”

    Event director Will Allen said, “It is quite clear from the feedback and support that has been shown by exhibitors, partners and sponsors that this event is needed and wanted in Wales.

    “My team and I now aim to work closely with the business community to ensure we deliver a first-class event which will become an integral part of the marketing calendar for all businesses right across Wales.”

    – - -

    Yeah Will Allen – it’s quite clear the event is needed. What is even clearer is that Nick James is a total business failure and his events have, without exception, ended up with other small businesses losing hundreds of thousands of pounds and HMRC being owed huge sums too.

    Given that track record and the precarious state of Worthington Group PLC finances I’d be asking for all payments up front if I was a supplier to the Great British Entrepreneur Awards or the Entrepreneur Wales Awards 2015.

    Accounts are now showing as overdue for Freshly Made Content Limited. The 2013 accounts show a loss of over £100k. 100pc owned by Allan Biggar. Biggar and Simon Burton as Directors.


  3. Serial con-artist Nick James of Worthington Group PLC (and Aidan Earley / Craig Whyte) make mockery of Maserati 100 list in Sunday Times February 2016!

    Apologies to all the creditors of Fresh Business Thinking, Business Edge Network and Nick James other liquidated companies. Anyone think Nick wrote his own profile and the Sunday Times failed to check the claims?


    Maserati and the Centre for Entrepreneurs have launched the second annual ‘Maserati 100’ index; a definitive list of 100 of Britain’s most successful philanthropists, investors, mentors and advisors, and, ascending entrepreneurs who are supporting the next generation of up and coming business talent.

    Nick James

    Category: Mentor / Advisor

    Nick James has 20 years’ experience in the events business on both sides of the Atlantic. He is the founder of Fresh Business Thinking and co-founder of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards (GBEA). With Fresh Business Thinking, Nick has created one of Britain’s most visited website for ambitious owner managers. At the same time, in its 3rd year, the GBEA are already the flagship awards for entrepreneurs. Nick has also co-authored a number of publications including the well-known Great British Entrepreneur’s Handbook.

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