Personal and undiluted views
crony capitalism

522 days ago

Crony capitalism in action: Pity the poor British taxpayer bailing out Versarien as Chinese walk

It was in April last year that oily Neill Ricketts first announced that Chinese Investors were going to buy new shares giving them 15% of Versarien (VRS). The shares roofed it and he dumped vast amounts at 137p – today the shares are 42p. First it was BIGT, the CIGIU and finally YG, a newly established Hong Kong entity set up to source funds working with those other companies that had no websites or offices or phone numbers. Quelle surprise! Guess what?


546 days ago

Cracking new Dominic Frisby video: Crony Capitalism will not be tolerated

An anthem for libertarians from my pal Frisby. Enjoy.


1019 days ago

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: Haydale misleads and some investors are too thick to realise

Today's podcast focusses in on the sheer stupidity of some private investors and covers Flybe (FLYB), Haydale (HAYD), Telit (TCM) and finally the disgraceful tale of crony capitalism that is Davictus (DVT).


1081 days ago

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: From 5.30 tonight think of me dear listeners as I undergo sheer torture

I start by explaining that torture and it involves sociology lecturers. I then move onto explaining why Roland "fatty" Cornish is the utterly unacceptable face of crony capitalism. Then moving from the undeserving rich to the needy,  I ask you to give a few quid to Woodlarks HERE. I then look at Frontera (FRR) where the silence is deafening, Amur (AMC), Audioboom (BUST), Angus Energy (ANGS), UK Oil & Gas (UKOG), F*ck Yu (YU.) and finally at Gulf Marine (GMS) which is about to discover that just because it is Christmas that won't stop the banksters being total bastards. There is no season of goodwill for that profession.


2159 days ago

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast Extra: The Biggest LIE told on AIM & a Crisis of Big PLC capitalism & Macro bear view

This is an extra bearcast for today. The main one on UK Companies is to follow. This one covers the biggest lie told by shite companies on AIM, told today by Golden Saint Resources (GSR) but it is far from alone, the real crisis in big PLC crony capitalism, ref Macy's and many others, and also why I remain bearish on equities.


2289 days ago

Tom Winnifrith BearCast 30 August: Capitalism isn't working - here's the solution (more of it)

I am roused by Jeremy Corbyn, Paul Scott, Paul Mason, Russell Brand and a poster here to discuss what is wrong with capitalism, why it is sick and not working. The solution? Stop bastardising it. We need pure capitalism not crony capitalism, run just for the 1%, but to make life better for all.


2290 days ago

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast 29 August - so bloody angry with ShoreCap and the Directors of Hotel Corp who are liars

At no-one is watching a clock yesterday AIM listed Hotel Corp (HCP) directors published a document seeking to thwart boardroom change at this disaster story and save their grubby tax free pay packets. Sadly for them I have obtained a series of emails which show that the document contained a series of lies. Worse still I have obtained accounts showing how 22% shareholder and ex Nomad to Hotel Corp, Shore Capital has coined it in from this vehicle, making millions, as shareholders have lost everything. The directors and Shore Cap oppose Yeoman and wish to pursue another venture similar to the last one which cost shareholders everything but made Shore millions ( and paid the useless board too much for doing sweet FA). I expose the lot of them and am furious.

This podcast contains bad language as I am livid - this story shows everything which is wrong about crony capitalism in the City and on the AIM Casino. I also accuse Messrs Short and Craine of lying to their investors and invite them to sue me for libel as I have the documents which show that my claims are 100% verifiable. See you in court bitchez!

Any shareholder in Hotel Corp should at once contact Yeoman to pledge support at the forthcoming EGM - this will be a proxy fight and everyone should back Yeoman against the lying crony capitalist Derek Short. Please contact Yeoman today on [email protected]  


2342 days ago

Greece: Tom Winnifrith: I am not a marxist, and my Euro Loon critic has no heart

I note the attack on me by my colleague Euro loon HERE. Like the heroic ex finance minister of the Hellenic Republic Yanis Varoufakis I regard such an attack from a supporter of the EU and Euro as a “badge of honour.”  The zealots who believe in the Euro concoct facts to support their religion. They show no humanity in the face of undeserved misery. The Euro and EU is a dream for crony failed politicians, big business, useless parasitic bureaucrats and banksters. It is a combination of crony capitalism and socialism which screws ordinary taxpayers and benefits the elite. My analysis and solutions are pure capitalism – my critic (a bankster) is a crony capitalist. I care about the poor. My critic is heartless.


2370 days ago

The Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon: the folly & corruption of the political, media & business elite

Today comes the news that planning permission has been granted to a £1 billion wildlife destroying green energy project in Swansea bay. This will cost the British consumer vast amounts of money but the political, media and business elite are right behind it. The Swansea bay tidal energy scheme shows the folly and corruption of an elite that has never been more out of touch with the plebs, the punters, you and me. We who pay the bills.

It will cost £1 billion to build the scheme, a massive seawall containing 16 turbines that generate power as the tide goes in and out. Migrating fish, like the ones that the uncles of my daughter catch in the river Tawe will be minced like the birds that are chopped by wind turbines. But it is all in the name of the environment so who cares?

The cost of this scheme and the fact that tidal power is not that er...powerful means that the £1 billion scheme will generate only enough electricity to power 155,000 homes - that is to say 90% of the households in the post industrial welfare slums of Swansea.

But the capital cost and the ongoing cost of maintaining underwater turbines means that for the consortium behind this which includes AIM listed Good Energy (GOOD)


2574 days ago

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast the Quindell fallout - Fleet Street is part of the problem not the solution

I am not in a fit state to write much today so I shall communicate via BearCasts. There will be a regular podcast later but ahead of that I shall run a series of Quindell fallout specials. I start with the role of the dying industry that is Fleet Street and the deadwood press. It is part of the problem of crony capitalism and corruption on the AIM casino not the solution as I try to explian here.


2593 days ago

The Northern Petroleum Rampathon, Proactive Investors and Crony Capitalism on AIM

The pre rescue bailout placing ramping exercise of Northern Petroleum (NOP) continues on Wednesday with a presentation somewhere in the Grim North organised by Proactive investors. A missive from Proactive sales bird Sophie Barrowman (pictured) last week tells you all you need to know about how the AIM Casino operates. Sophie gushes in semi-orgasmic tones:

We are very excited to announce our third company for next week's line-up, Northern Petroleum which we expect to significantly outperform over the next 12 months. The shares jumped almost 20% on Tuesday due to outstanding flow rates from a well drilled in Canada. The first of THREE new wells drilled at the Keg River project has tested at a rate of 1,300 barrels of oil per day. Northern has a market cap of just £15mln… it will rerate


Where do I start?


2614 days ago

Daniel Stewart – Crony Capitalism on the AIM Casino in a Nutshell – new shock revelations

Yesterday we revealed that while Daniel Stewart (DAN) does not have enough regulatory capital to operate as an FCA authorised firm it has enough capital to plan a lavish Champagne Christmas party (where’s my invite?) HERE. But it gets worse. Much worse. This is crony capitalism in a nutshell.

All FCA firms must file quarterly returns on Reg cap. Yet this shortfall was only flagged up by new auditors in September. When did the shortfall arise? Were prior quarterly returns inaccurate? Who has been fired?

Why does Daniel Stewart not have enough capital (i.e. cash)? Because it is run as a firm for the benefit of Chairman Peter Shea, fuck the shareholders. As such I draw your attention to the 2013 accounts. In that year Mr Shea took a salary of £170,000 plus a subsidiary (DS Leasing) paid 312,000 to the Daniel Stewart Partnership which is in fact a partnership of which the beneficial owner is …Peter Shea. So in a bad year for DS PLC Shea took out £182,000. Contracts that with 2012 which was a good year for the PLC. In that year Shea took out £457,411 (including the £12,000 to the “partnership”.

That is the way it works. In a bad year


2753 days ago

Tangiers Petroleum – An Apology from me, Questions and Condemnation

James Parter revealed some quite disgraceful ramping of shares in Tangiers Petroleum (TPET) yesterday. His analysis was superb and shows why an Australian website was publishing plain untruths about this dual listed company. I suggest reading his article here.

That website then garnered publicity for its shit analysis by paying various UK website owners so send out a promotional mailing. Websites like this, ADVFN, etc are free to access and we therefore run a business model based on allowing financial services companies to send mailings to your mailing list. You know we have to pay our writers somehow!

I am embarrassed to say that OneFreeShareTip – an excellent website we run in partnership with ADVFN ran this mailing. The mailing was sold by the team at ADVFN and we have discussed the matter and they will not be selling to this client again for OFSTD. That is an honourable call by them and the right thing to do. But for what happened I apologise most sincerely. Anyone can offer words as an apology but although it was nothing to do with me, I want to show that I mean it.

I do not wish to make a cent out of this episode as I regard it as an unethical aspect of crony capitalism and so the portion of that sale which RMPC earned will be donated to the excellent Woodlarks charity.

Next we come to the Australian web site company


2754 days ago

The Sort of Director who does not get it, who wants only upside risk

I wanna tell you a story…it is a true story but not from the great Max Bygraves. It is from me and from a company meeting a while back and it is why I almost despair of some on public markets.

I shall not name the company but it is trying to raise a couple of million and for some reason I was at the presentation the other week. The two key men sounded pretty impressive and handled questions about strategy, assets and that sort of matter pretty well. I asked about pay and there was no troughing going on.

And so I asked how much cash they had invested in the company. Er…..

One fellow said he had vended in the odd asset – which did not exactly seem core going forward. The other said he had been granted options. “So to answer my question you have not actually stuck a penny of your own cash in have you?” Er, um, ah, but we could be earning far more elsewhere, blah, blah, blah.

I persisted. So how much are you putting into the placing then? I have options said one. The other said that if there are any shares left he might take a few.

As I explained that options were a one way bet it was clear that my questioning was not going down well. The look on their faces suggested that I had asked “how many time have you masturbated this week?” But that is not what I asked.

As The Sheriff of AIM, I merely tried to establish whether their interests were aligned 


2764 days ago

Green Dragon Misleading Investors – When is a decrease an increase? What a frigging joke.

This morning’s RNS from AIM Cesspit posterboy Greed Dragon Gas (GDG) plumbs new depths when it comes to spinning bad news as good. The company, its Nomad (Smith & Williamson) and its PR firm (Pelham Bell Pottinger, PR man James Henderson) should all be taken out and shot. This is such a total frigging disgrace in describing black as white. Words almost escape me.


2892 days ago

Crony capitalism EU style - Dan Hannan is THE man

I stumbled on this video today where Tory MEP Dan Hannan, who is easily the cleverest Tory going, puts three Euro-loons (headed by the almost comical Lib Dem MEP Sir Graham Watson) utterly to the sword. This is a breathtakingly good indictment of the Evil Empire.



2894 days ago

Five New Year Resolutions for AIM to Deal with the corrupt Cesspit bucket end of the market

The bottom end of AIM is corrupt. City insiders break the law in insider dealing ahead of heavily discounted placings which stuff private investors in an institutionalised manner. It is crony capitalism writ large. As such I offer up five New Year Resolutions for Aim to clean up the market instantaneously.


2895 days ago

Hot Rocks Investments – ISDX Crony capitalism and a rather tardy RNS

The stockmarket closed at 12.30 PM yesterday (New Year’s Eve). By 1.30 PM PM only really sad geeks (i.e. me) were watching RNS streams. Step forward ISDX listed crony capitalist venture Hot Rocks Investments which announced its interim numbers at 1.55 PM.

Chairman Brian Rowbotham said he was “pleased” to announce the numbers. Why was he “pleased”? The numbers – as you would expect from a company that sends out news at 1.55 PM on the half day that is New Year’s Eve – were crap.

Having written down the value of its investments (in tiny Aim and ISDX listed resource stocks and pre IPO ventures) yet again the reported loss was £348,834. When net assets at the period end (30th September) were a mere £1.511 million that sort of loss is pretty meaningful (and shockingly bad).

But Hot Rocks is confident about its portfolio, especially pre IPO Elephant Oil in which it has a 10% stake. One of Elephant’s directors and a key shareholder in the enterprise is Gavin Burnell who just happens to be the contact name on Hot Rocks release. Burnell is a director of Hot Rocks and its driving force.

What next?


2907 days ago

Call Peter Redmond of Leed Resources on his Mobile NOW with 2 questions

I outlined earlier today why Peter Redmond the chairman of Leed Resources (LDP) should be fired at once. If you support crony capitalism on the AIM Cesspit and are happy with the transfer of wealth from the many to the few, you will say that I am being cruel to an old man and should back off. But…

If you want to make your point very directly to one of the few I would urge you to start calling him on his mobile and do not let off until you get an answer to 2 questions.


2907 days ago

Leed Resources – Chairman Peter Redmond should be sacked for Incompetence & Cowardice

Leed Resources (LDP) has today published its annual results. It is hard to know where to start with the incompetence of the man in charge but my conclusion is simple: for being an expensive and useless chairman, for operational failure, for avarice and for cowardice Peter Redmond should be fired at once. 

Let’s start with the white feathers for this posterboy of crony capitalism on the AIM Cesspit. In prior announcements, one was supplied with full contact details if you had a question. On today’s abject POS results statement there are none.  Should you wish to call someone to vent your anger let me assist. The coward contact details for Leed are


2922 days ago

TXO – who are the bent “institutional investors” – quizzing foxy Ms Alice Lane

TXO (TXO) has this morning raised £500,000 at 0.1p. The shares are off by 0.02p at 0.11p. The deal is probably good news for TXO, although the dilution is painful, but that is not the real story here.

The real story is the placing. When TXO started its roadshow the share price was 0.18p. In other words it fell by 0.05p as City investors were made “insiders” and asked to participate in the placing and by just 0.02p when the placing was announced.

So who dealt? Who blabbed? Who broke the law? Surely the share price fall is no fluke? Frankly the idea that it is a coincidence is about as credible as Tony Blair’s excuses for invading Iraq. 

This is a clear open and shut case of criminal activity in the City. Of insider dealing. Of crony capitalism. But will anything happen? There is more chance of me getting to shag Cheryl Cole this weekend than of anyone doing anything about this.

The broker to the placing is Northland Capital, specifically a Ms Alice Lane who is as you can see is really rather foxy. I called Alice this morning


2926 days ago

Video Postcard from Tom Winnifrith #53 – Freedom of information applies only to little people

This is the last week when you will see Tom Winnifrith wearing his Movember tash. 

To sponsor Tom’s efforts to raise money to fight prostate and testicular cancer go HERE.

This week’s theme is how the powerful  in this case Nick Clegg and Wendy Deng’s friend Tony Blair) use the law to try to stop us finding out what they are up to in a way that we would not be able to do.

FOI applies only to little people.

This is so Orwellian.


2930 days ago

Leed Resources – Crony Capitalism on the AIM Cesspit: Peter Redmond answer your frigging phone you overpaid failure

Leed Resources (LDP) is yet another pointless AIM listed investment company brought to you by the broker that specialises in such POS operations (my old pals at Peterhouse). Today it has served up a shocking statement but will its executive chairman Peter Redmond give a xxxx? I don’t know – he is refusing to answer his phone.


2931 days ago

Tern PLC – A Company Unable to tell the truth in the wretched cesspit of AIM crony capitalism

Tern (TERN) is the new name for a disastrous oil company called Silvermere. At least Silvermere tried to do something useful (produce oil), Tern is just another AIM Cesspit do-nothing posterboy investing company. And it cannot even bring itself to tell the truth. 


2934 days ago

Ending the crony capitalism on AIM - send some liars to prison and ban some bankers

A week ago I outlined the first step to ending crony capitalism (the transfer of wealth from the many – private investors – to the few – directors, advisers, and City insider investors) – namely forcing all companies on AIM to raise cash via rights issues.  Now for step to in cleaning up the Cesspit – sending liars to prison. 


2939 days ago

New article live: How to slash the hydra of crony capitalism on AIM - Part 1 bring back the rights issue

I have received a massive response from investors, CEOs and Nomads to my articled on the Crony Capitalism that is destroying AIM. So what is the solution? Let us start with how money is raised: bring back the rights issue. 

Right now for companies on AIM, money is raised by ramping the share price by paying vast sums to PR/IR people to ramp away. Private investors buy shares in the open market. At that point new shares are issued at a huge discount to City insiders who then flip.


2946 days ago

AIM is Crony Capitalism– Private Investors are the Cannon Fodder, what is financial journalism?

Greed, as I argued at the weekend, is good. I believe in capitalism in its purest form. But AIM is not pure capitalism it is crony capitalism, a mechanism for transferring wealth from the many (that will be you reading this piece, private investors) to the few.

I was chatting to Paul Scott on this matter earlier. He used the phrase Cannon Fodder to describe how some in the City view private investors. He is kind. I would say most in the City view we mere plebs in this way.

The fact is that 80% of companies on AIM will never, ever generate a cent of free cashflow.