Clandeboye Agencies are a confectionary wholesaler from Antrim. They were awarded DHSC contracts worth £107.5 million. I have followed this company for the last 3+ years, to try & uncover their profits.
Clandeboye were awarded two contracts for gowns by the DHSC. I also believe they supplied NHS Wales. Their DHSC contracts have been well documented. Good Law Project, Panorama & other covering the award of these contracts. I wanted to investigate the profits that were made by the Walker family who own Clandeboye Agencies.
As part of any investigation facts need cross referencing & in this case the contracts are both visible on UK contracts finder. DHSC spend though only shows spend of £69.3 million. Not £107.5 million. So £38.2 million difference!
Further investigation shows that in April 2023, almost 3 years after most contracts were awarded, the DHSC completed a major update of the published DHSC spend records. We can now see that Clandeboye Agencies were paid £107.52 million by the DHSC, a match to the contracts awarded.
The next step is to examine Clandeboye Agencies accounts. This is a bit of a web. So I will try & simplify it as much as possible!
The reporting of Clandeboye Agencies accounts was extended until 31st January 2021 and there is little evidence of the PPE contracts for a company who had supplied over a £100 million in PPE. Shareholder funds had increased by approximately £1.3 million but they also owed another company (Alpinebeat Unlimited) with the same directors £675k.
In June 2020 just after they won the contracts, the directors formed a holding company called Clady Holdings Ltd. The first Clady Holdings company accounts show in July 2021 that they owed another company owned by the same directors a total of £6.27 million. Clady Holdings Ltd shareholder funds showed just 22k.
So this other company (not named) had lent Clady Holdings £6.27 million and had the same Walker family directors as Clady Holdings. I have checked all the companies owned by the Walker family & surmise it could only be Alpinebeat Unlimited, an unlimited company incorporated in September 2020 & the same Alpinebeat Unlimited that had also lent £675k to Clandeboye Agencies.
As this is an unlimited company they don't need to file accounts. But it would suggest they had creditors in Clandeboye Agencies & Clady Holdings of £6.9 million. The strangely Clandeboye Agencies & Clady Holdings make no mention of the loans on their next accounts!
This would suggest that the £6.9 million had been paid back to Alpinebeat Unlimited during 2021.
The directors have also incorporated two new companies Clady Group & Dunsilly Holdings. The capital invested in these companies £2.8 million. Finally they also incorporated & closed a company called Transport & Logistics Limited incorporated in December 2020 & wound down in January 2022.
All the companies accounts were completed by the Plymouth Brethren owned UBT Accountants.
This complex web leads to potentially three companies (Alpinebeat Unlimited, Clady Group & Dunsilly Holding) that all didn't exist pre Covid, having a worth of up to £9.7 million. I hope you found it interesting to see how a contract winner can create new companies & move the money around.
One of the biggest winners in regards to the Covid PPE contracts was Northern Ireland based Clandeboye Agencies. The Walker family business based in Antrim was awarded two contracts worth a total of £107,520,000. The business runs the website www.slumberjackcoffee.com and also supplies wholesale confectionary according to Yell.
Companies House shows four directors Andrew, David, Nicholas & Stephen Walker. The accounts prepared by UBT accountants for 2019 show the company making a £101k profit with net assets of £276k. David Walker is an ex director of Causeway Vision Ltd trading as Causeway Trading. Causeway Trading is situated at the OneSchool Global Knockloughrim Campus and is a company that donates any profit to charity. A current director of Causeway Vision is Garth White who is also a director at Ascot Signs, another PPE contract winning business.
Contact £93,240,000 PE Gowns
Published on the 23rd June 2020, on the Contract finders website, this shows a contract with the Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) commencing on the 18th May and ending on the 19th May. The gowns were collected weekly over a 12 week period starting on 18th May up to the 3rd August. Uniserve collected directly from the manufacturer. There was a total of 22,200,000 gowns ordered at an average price of £4.20 per gown. Though the manufacturer is redacted the quality certificate comes from the Taiwan office of Intertek.
Contract £14,280,000 PE Gowns
Published on the 23rd June 2020, on the Contract finders website, this shows a contract with Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) commencing on the 27th April and ending on the 28th April. The gowns were collected weekly over 9 weeks by Uniserve from the 3rd May until 28th June, directly from Medtecs (Cambodia) corporation ltd (Factory). A 50% deposit of the contract was paid by the Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) on the award of the contract to Clandeboye Agencies. The quality certificate for the gowns comes from the Taiwan office of Intertek and has the same date of issue and same test date at the £93,240,000 contract.