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1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for investdrinks.org

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award




Friday, 23 May 2014

European Fine Wines Ltd – liquidation beckons?

 
The Bromley premises of European Fine Wines Ltd:
11 Bromley Common, Bromley BR2 9LS 
(Google maps – street view)

European Fine Wines Ltd, one of the longest running dubious wine investment companies – two former directors banned for land banking scams, appears to have ceased trading and is likely to go into liquidation:
 
From investdrinks blog (for rest of post):
'The signs suggest that European Fine Wines Ltd (also called EFWines) has ceased trading and is likely to go into liquidation. The company was set up on 15th August 2005 and has been one of the longest running dubious wine investment companies.

I received an email this morning telling me that all the staff had been 'sacked'. The Bromley phone number has been unable to any calls throughout today as 'all of our lines are busy'. The company accounts have been overdue since 30th November 2013 and the company website (www.efwines.com), which was live earlier today, is now off-line and suspended. It is reported that the debts of European Fine Wines Ltd are between £500K and £1 million. It remains to be seen whether any of this is wine ordered by its clients. I suspect that there will be a number of clients who will now discover that they have paid over the odds for their investment wines.'

44 comments:

Mark Rawcliffe said...

i invested my life savings in 2009 after bank scare to this day i have not received all my money still owed thousands. ):
From efwines .
can anyone help me please .
As I can not work full time as I had a car accidents in 2004 which was not my fault i received compensation which was the money I invited for safe keeping
( I thought)
don't know what to do next.

Mark R

Jim Budd said...

Mark. Does this mean you have no record of wines being bought for you and stored in London City Bond please?

Anonymous said...

I have got the original copies of wine receipts
But efwines ask me to put them into their l.c.b account so they could sell them quicker.
I'm not the only one who phoned london city bonds over this matter.
My rotation numbers do not match any more to the wines
I purchased ?
Mark R

Jim Budd said...

Very sorry to hear this. I suggest you complain through Action Fraud. You could also contact Scott Assemakis, a previous director of European Fine Wines Ltd, but still apparently involved in the business. Details here:

http://www.scott-assemakis.co.uk/info@scott-assemakis.co.ukScott Assemakis an Accomplished Entrepreneur with over 10 years experience.
11 Bromley Common, Bromley, Kent ,LondonBR2 9LSUnited Kingdom
Phone:020 3322 6185
Hours: Mo, Tu, We, Th, Fr: 8:00am - 5:00am
- See more at: http://www.scott-assemakis.co.uk/#sthash.85BgGw7I.dpuf

Anonymous said...

My mother too has invested a substantial amount and we pay yearly to store it in London City Bond. Does this mean our wine purchases are safe?

Jim Budd said...

Anon. It looks like your mother has her own account at LCB in which case your wine is safe. But I suggest you check with LCB. Jim

Jim Budd said...

Anon. It looks like your mother has her own account at LCB in which case your wine is safe. But I suggest you check with LCB. Jim

Jim Budd said...

Anon. It looks like your mother has her own account at LCB in which case your wine is safe. But I suggest you check with LCB. Jim

Jim Budd said...

Anon. It looks like your mother has her own account at LCB in which case your wine is safe. But I suggest you check with LCB. Jim

William said...

I have foolishly dealt with this company and a substantial amount of wine I purchased has not been transferred to LCB.....please let me know if your hear any further news on this.

Mark Rawcliffe said...

Very sorry to hear this
Who was your broker efwines
???

Anonymous said...

Thanks, I have checked with LCB and they are in my mothers name. I have now requested a rotation stock report to be sent. Thanks again

Anonymous said...

just a quick bit of info efwines company sign has been taken down and there is no sign of life in the office. bromley in kent

Anonymous said...

Hi, we got a letter regarding liquidation today which I am obviously very concerned about. EFWines acted as a broker for us and as such I believe we own the wine? We were told it was stored at Vinotheque and have paid storage we also have confirmation of ownership certificates - what should we do to check we own the wine and it exists?

Jim Budd said...

Anon. Is your wine in your own account. If so then it is safe. If not then it can be more complicated to establish ownership. If you are uncertain if you have your own account you should contact David Hogg at Vinotheque (entirely independent from EFW) and find out the position.

Anonymous said...

I received a call from EFW as I had left numerous messages a couple of weeks ago. The guy on the line was trying to get me to buy more, but I told him I was more interested in selling some! Within minutes I had a call from a company called Aspire Commodoties interested in buying our wine or putting them into auction. Where dis they get our number from and how did they know, were they tipped off by EFW? Have you heard of this company before? All sounds a bit fishy to me.

Jim Budd said...

Anon. I agree - decidedly fishy. New company to me formed September 2013. I wouldn't touch Aspire Commodities Ltd.

Jim Budd said...

Anon sorry I have come across them but only recently. Certainly wouldn't consider dealing with them.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your advice, I will not be dealing with them!

Jim Budd said...

Anon. Good news. Would be even better if you would file a complaint through Action Fraud.

Anonymous said...

Fine & Rare Wines/Bordeaux Index/Farr Vintners amongst others regularly sold to European Fine Wines

Anonymous said...

I have just received a call from Surrey police who are investigating EFW. They have only had 5 complaints through from Action fraud. Can I please urge you to contact Action Fraud on 03001232040 to file a complaint if you have been affected by EFW.
Sue

Anonymous said...

Hi are you or do you know of anyone who can give us a true and fair valuation of our portfolio we have purchase through EFW? Many thanks

Jim Budd said...

Anon. On the right hand side of the investdrinks blog you will find a list of companies I would consider buying from. You could choose one or more of them. A check on wine-searcher will also give you an idea once the have deducted the seller's commission.

Anonymous said...

I had an account with EFW and had a portfolio of £30,000 of wine that I had built up over the last three years purchased from European Fine Wines. This was held at LCB in my name. April 2013 I wanted to sell £20,000 worth of wine so I contacted EFW to sell some wine and they sold one of the wines for £1,475 and said it was not a good time to sell and it might take a while to sell more of my wine at profit. I then had a call from a company called Prestige Wine Collections (PWC) someone called David Smith offering to buy my wine. At the time I did not suspect it as being a cold call he offered me £27,000 for my existing portfolio and reinvest the balance in to the en primeur campaign as discussed until the agreed date of the 30th of August 2013. This would achieve the sum of £35,000 I went ahead and emailed LCB to transfer the wine to PWC account at LCB. I then found it difficult to contact David Smith at PWC but did manage to speak once on the phone and he said the deal was still going ahead. Since then I have tried many times to contact him and was told they had moved out of their office and were not contactable. June 24th 2013 I then reported them to the Action Fraud and have heard nothing since. PWC web site is still live unlike EFW which is taken down. I have often wondered if Dave Smith and PWC were in any way connected EFW.

Anonymous said...

I had an account with EFW and had a portfolio of £30,000 of wine that I had built up over the last three years purchased from European Fine Wines. This was held at LCB in my name. April 2013 I wanted to sell £20,000 worth of wine so I contacted EFW to sell some wine and they sold one of the wines for £1,475 and said it was not a good time to sell and it might take a while to sell more of my wine at profit. I then had a call from a company called Prestige Wine Collections (PWC) someone called David Smith offering to buy my wine. At the time I did not suspect it as being a cold call he offered me £27,000 for my existing portfolio and reinvest the balance in to the en primeur campaign as discussed until the agreed date of the 30th of August 2013. This would achieve the sum of £35,000 I went ahead and emailed LCB to transfer the wine to PWC account at LCB. I then found it difficult to contact David Smith at PWC but did manage to speak once on the phone and he said the deal was still going ahead. Since then I have tried many times to contact him and was told they had moved out of their office and were not contactable. June 24th 2013 I then reported them to the Action Fraud and have heard nothing since. PWC web site is still live unlike EFW which is taken down. I have often wondered if Dave Smith and PWC were in any way connected EFW.

Anonymous said...

I too have a considerable investment in wine from EFC I bought it as a long term investment 12 months ago and it is stored at Vinotheque. I get invoices from them (also for other peoples wines which doesn't fill me with much confidence)So should I leave it where it is in a hope to break even or make a profit as after all it was only making 1% in the bank. When I challenged EFC over their prices they stated they were higher than the comparisons I was looking at because they were all in their original cases and were not single bottles.

Jim Budd said...

If you don't have to sell I would leave your wine where it is in the hope that prices will pick up.

Anonymous said...

I purchased wine. And have receipts but did not transfer the wine to a storage unit. Will I be able to recover the wine or money?

Anonymous said...

Is European Fine Wines in any way associated to ENCARTA FINE WINES ?
I have just received notification that Encarta have applied to go into Liquidation, and its being handled by Abbott Fielding

Jim Budd said...

Anon. Thank you I posted on investdrinks yesterday about Encarta going bust. Don't think they are directly linked but certainly part of the Bromley 'Bermuda investment triangle'.

Les H' said...

Hi I am one of the unfortunate one's who bought wine from EFW I only found out because someone from Paragon fine diamonds was asking to trade my wine for coloured diamonds. The managing director is a Stuart R. Poppleton, I also had had a letter from a company called Winebay a Richard Miller a bit like ebay but for wine owners, also a company called wineowners which was in a piece in the telegraph which sounds a bit better. Have you heard of any of these Jim.

Jim Budd said...

Les H: I have warned about Paragon on my investdrinks blogs. I would avoid them at all costs as I would other companies offering diamonds, carbon credits etc.

Winebay has a Facebook page and has yet to launch. Wine Owners is as far as I know a legitimate company.

Les H' said...

Thanks for your advice I hope to keep the wine till the price goes back up.

Anonymous said...

It is now very clear that EFW have very much over inflated their wines. I have had numerous valuations and they are not coming in anyway near the amount paid for my portfolio.
The 2009 Mouton Rothschild has been valued at £5k less than which EFW advised me was a good investment!! I am so angry, I feel they have stolen my life savings :(

Anonymous said...

It is now very clear that EFW have very much over inflated their wines. I have had numerous valuations and they are not coming in anyway near the amount paid for my portfolio.
The 2009 Mouton Rothschild has been valued at £5k less than which EFW advised me was a good investment!! I am so angry, I feel they have stolen my life savings :(

Anonymous said...

My husband was brain washed by EFW he spent a very large amount of money on wine, which I was very cross about. The phone calls were on a regular basis, cold calling, like you anon 16th September 2014. The potfolio is not even worth half of the money which my husband shelled out, he was adamant that this was a good investment. I on the other hand was very synical and kept telling him to sell, before it was too late. Now it is too late, and we have lost a lot of money.

Clinton Beckway said...

this could be the same people who use to run the wine comapany:
Paragon Fine Diamonds Limited - Open Company
https://www.opencompany.co.uk/.../paragon-fine-diamonds-limited
Free companies house information for Paragon Fine Diamonds Limited including Company Check, ... Appointment Terminated, Director Stuart Poppleton.

Anonymous said...

Yet another SCAM from E.F.W. Today I received a call from a man purporting to be from E.F.W. He stated that the solicitors(Abbot & Fielding) who were dealing with the bankruptcy had been given the ex-client list/portfolios of all their clients and that A&B would be contacting them. Those that had been contacted were required to sell their wines for 5p in the £1. I asked how this was so and he replied that as EFW were the agents the solicitors could liquidate their clients wines. He then offered to sell me insurance to cover this loss. Quote £1500 for 5 years. I was very supsicious and rang Abbot & Fielding and it was all rubbish. So BEWARE. Tey are trying it on again.

Anonymous said...

I recieved a phone call last friday from a company called insolvency asst management , gave a crime ref no , companies house no , said they would pay me £6000, but had to pay a deposit of £1500 that would be refunded , I think it was another scam , anyone else been contacted,

Jim Budd said...

Anon. There does not appear to be a company with that name registered at Companies House.Do you have the company number quoted please? Thanks.

Certainly you should not pay a deposit? Advance fee fraud?

(Please note that my comment posted earlier this morning should have include 'not' as this company appears not to be registered at

Les H' said...

I have had numerous cold calls about my wine a lot with blocked or numbers with held so I ignore them but got a call from a Nicholas Green of Shield Capitol insolvency and wanted me to clarify my details. I said I would check him out and he would direct me to the web site but I refused and found no company at company house please be vigilant.

Jim Budd said...

Les H: Many thanks. Yes there are lots of chancers/scammers chasing ex-clients of EFW and other collapsed companies.

Bev said...

Hi Jim , i have had recently a firm ring me in regards to my wine , Auction House Services .

They are quoting for me to sell my wine at the next wine auction at the Mandarin Oriental macau Casino, 28th april

They are saying to pay by Bank transfer , i wanted to pay by Credit card as i know this covers me , but the guy said i am covered if the monies are not given back to me after the auction has finished ,the monies would be refunded .

Any help would be appreciated

Regards Bev