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Disgraced Bordeaux UK chief banned as director for nine years

Published:  06 November, 2013

Ian Vanderhook of Bordeaux UK has been banned as a director for nine years after his company collapsed with debts of more than £10m.

Bordeaux UK was declared bankrupt in November 2011. Vanderhook took £23m from investors between 2008 and 2011, but at the time of liquidation, only £1.7m worth of wine was in evidence.

Bromley-based former lift engineer Vanderhook was guilty of "mismanagement on a colossal scale", said liquidator Nedim Ailyan of Abbott Fielding. Despite bringing in specialist agents to help unravel the financial mess left by Vanderhook, liquidators were unable to account for much of the wine or money.

Describing Vanderhook's accounts as "completely inadequate", Ailyan said: "There were no financial records available to us that would have helped us formulate a statement of affairs or to reconcile individuals' accounts."

Due to the poor financial records, Ailyan and his team were unable to ascertain the level of creditors.

The lack of accounts also meant that the Insolvency Service was unable to calculate taxes due to HMRC.

Bottles of fine wine

Vanderhook's accounting failures were not restricted to Bordeaux UK: the Insolvency Service found that he had failed to keep adequate financial records for two other companies, Van Der Hook Management and Van Der Hook Consultancy.

Bordeaux UK was associated with wine investment companies Vin Bordelais and NS & IV - following its voluntary liquidation there were suggestions that it had begun operating as Vin Bordelais, with Bordeaux UK investors reporting receiving calls from that company's staff, now claiming to work for Vin Bordelais.

Liquidators expect Bordeaux UK investors to receive just 15 to 20 pence for every £1 they invested.

Vanderhook - or Van Der Hook, as he is also known - will be eligible to operate once more as a director on 18 October 2022. Attempts to contact him have been unsuccessful.