In December 2018 London-based investment firm Independent Portfolio Managers Limited was declared in default following a long-running dispute between the firm and its customers. The dispute involved the failure of two mini-bonds that the firm had promoted.
Independent Portfolio Managers
As Independent Portfolio Managers was a regulated firm. Because of this, if it wanted to promote unregulated mini-bonds from outside the UK, it needed the approval of a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulated business.
Promoting Investment In Two Mini-Bonds
Two companies approached the firm to promote two investments within the UK on their behalf. The companies were Secured Energy Bonds and Providence Financial. Independent Portfolio Managers promised secure investments and guaranteed returns on the two bonds. It advised some of its UK customers to invest in these.
Security Energy Bonds attracted around 950 investors and raised around £7.5 million.
Providence Financial attracted 825 investors at an average of £10,000 each. In total, around £8 million was invested through Providence. However, Independent Portfolio Managers had previously been ordered to cease trading by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in 2017 as a result of complaints raised about the investments. Therefore if Independent Portfolio Managers had not been involved in either of the mini-bonds in question, they would not have been legally allowed to advertise to private investors in the UK.
The Financial Ombudsman Services Decision
The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) ruled in favour of an investor in the case. It decided that the Invitation Document approved by Independent Portfolio Managers was “misleading and unfair”. It was also argued that the investment into Secured Energy Bonds did not meet promises of being secure.
The decision finding Independent Portfolio Managers at fault ultimately lead to the firm defaulting in December 2018. This means investors can now apply to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) to recover the money they have lost.
Get In Touch
Anthony Philip James Solicitors is currently advising customers who lost their money in these investments. If you were advised by Independent Portfolio Managers or had investments with Secured Energy Bonds or Providence Financial get in touch and we can help you recover the money you have lost.