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Shock Carphone resignation

Robert Peston | 08:00 UK time, Monday, 8 December 2008

There has been an astonishing announcement by Carphone Warehouse this morning.

Carphone Warehouse shopOne of its two founders, David Ross, has resigned as deputy chairman, following his disclosure to the mobile phone and internet group that between 2006 and 2008 he pledged 136.4m of his shares in the company as collateral against personal loans.

This is significant for two reasons.

First, under Stock Exchange rules, each time directors pledge shares in this way as collateral, their companies are supposed to make an announcement.

Ross failed to inform Carphone Warehouse that he had committed his shares in this way until 7 December.

It's not clear why he failed to keep Carphone in the picture in the appropriate way. Nor is it clear what kind of action, if any, will be taken by the Financial Services Authority, the City watchdog, against this apparent breach of the rules.

As I understand it, Ross feels he was guilty of an administrative oversight. But it's a pretty embarrassing oversight.

Second, although Ross has told Carphone that "none of these loans is currently in default", there is also an implication in the company's statement that he may at some future date be forced to sell some or all of the shares.

Carphone says that Mr Ross has "given an undertaking to the board to facilitate an orderly market, where possible, for any future disposal of shares in the company."

According to Carphone, earlier use by Ross of his shares as collateral means that 177m of his shares are pledged against loans, equivalent to about a fifth of the entire company.

Investors will therefore see this morning's announcement as raising great uncertainties about the future ownership of that fifth of the company - which at a time when life is so difficult for all retailers is something of a pain for Charles Dunstone, Carphone's chief executive, and his executive team.

It's also something of a personal shock for Dunstone. He was at school with Ross, or "Rosso" as Dunstone calls him. He founded the company with him. And it would be understandable if he felt a bit let down this morning.

UPDATE, 08:47 AM:

David Ross is a pretty well-known character on the British corporate scene. In May, the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, appointed him to look after the financial interests of Londoners in preparations for the 2012 Olympics. Ross became the Mayor's nominee on the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games.

He's also a director of National Express and Big Yellow Group.


  • Comment number 1.

    Interesting story mainly because someone has admitted to breaking the rules and resigned.

    At least Carphone can now see the extent of the problem and take action.

    This is the only way that the business world can ever hope to get back on its feet again.

  • Comment number 2.

    Any idea what Davross/ Dross needed the loans for?

  • Comment number 3.

    Robert Preston seizes upon another opportunity to make a sensational headline

    not much else to the story here...... Man did wrong, man admits mistake and the company moves on...end of!

  • Comment number 4.

    It seems to me that far too many businessmen have little or no knowledge of the rules and laws governing businesses and refuse to take advice from those more knowledgeable. They seem to think that if no one knows about what they do, then it doesn't matter what they do !!

    This cavalier attitude to rules and laws are carried to the extreme in many cases.

    Ignorance of the Law is no defence !!

    Since both he and his company will be punished for this breach of the Stock Exchange rules, he can expect the shares in his company to be punished by the investors. In turn, the market value his pledged shares may not be enough to cover his loans and he will either have to pledge more/all or sell some/all to cover the loans !!

    This, in turn, may push the company so far over the edge that it may have to be bought up by/merged with a bigger company.

    I think this is but the start of many another announcement of misdeeds brought to light by the credit crunch, the falling share market(s) and the failing economy !!

    We will have to wait with dreadful anticipation for what else will crawl out of the woodwork !!

  • Comment number 5.

    When you consider their share price has dropped over the past twelve months from £3.58 to 92p today (at time of writing). That he pledged 134.6m of his shares between 2006-2008 which in fact appears to be 177m shares! It must have been a lively board discussion when this was revealed. In addition to the shocked board, there must be a few worried financiers. With rhe collateral now being worth around 25% of what it was 12 months ago. They will be hoping he was not too heavily into Lehman Brothers, the American subprime market, etc, etc, etc...

  • Comment number 6.

    Man makes mistake and resigns from business he co-founded.

    Speaker entrusted with centuries of responsibility fails miserably and blames subordinate. Promises to go on forever.

    And people wonder why politicians are held in such low esteem.

  • Comment number 7.

    How is it fair that he is director of 5 companies? I've no sympathy for the supposedly intelligent man. There is no excuse for recklessness at such scrutinous times.

  • Comment number 8.

    What Ross did was not the "christian "thing to do!.

  • Comment number 9.

    Glad to see you got in the dig at the Tories in your update Robert - it would be a shame to let your masters down with a story only about business with no political spin.

  • Comment number 10.

    Update - Another fine piece of judgement by Boris?

  • Comment number 11.

    It surely cannot be that a Tory didn't follow the long-established rules and procedures of an ancient and venerable institution!
    Given time and a safe seat, he could become a good Daily Mail candidate for Speaker of the House of Commons then?

  • Comment number 12.


    This Guy has resigned on a PRINCIPLE!!

    Shame our Politicians wont TAKE NOTICE!

  • Comment number 13.

    #7 "How is it fair that he is director of 5 companies? I've no sympathy for the supposedly intelligent man. There is no excuse for recklessness at such scrutinous times."

    A great many politicians are directors of more than 5 companies. This does not mean that the wield power within those companies !! They could be non-executive directors, purportedly there to oversee the actions of the executive directors !! They also collect nice little lumps of money and perks for attending directors' meetings, sometimes being jetted around in first class to do so !!

    Nice work if you can get it !!

  • Comment number 14.

    How long will it take to pay off these personal loans if its more than 100 years he should
    (a) go to a free debt management service
    (b) file an IVA
    (c) file for Bankruptcy

  • Comment number 15.

    Is it actually possible for any man to know all the law governing him? There's more law published each day than anyone can follow, the MPs are complaining none is ever debated simply because there's too much to debate, and that's ignoring the output of statutory instruments and case precedent.
    It's time the law is codified, so incompatible texts are ironed out and we can find out what we're required to do with ease. The existence of wikis and the like should make this relatively easy, but whether the legal profession will be happy to see such a lucrative mess go up in smoke is rather unlikely.

  • Comment number 16.

    Business man makes mistake, Business man resigns to avoid bringing the company into disrepute.

    Wow, huge story.

    Can't we get any answers from our leaders about why their current efforts are singly failing to shore up good companies and allow them to continue to trade.

    Crash Gordon fails launch sequence again

  • Comment number 17.

    I'm only guessing, but I would have thought that somewhere in a deal this large there'd have been at least one Solicitor and a Finance guy (if not a team) that has dealt with Share Pledging before, after all it’s not every day you put down £470,000,000ish of collateral

    Presumably neither of them knew it was dodgy to keep stum!

    I don't buy no one telling him!

    And I think this story has legs, very long ones!

  • Comment number 18.

    #15 Ssssh !! Are you trying to destroy their lucrative livelihood ?? Do you want to be assassinated by the legal beagles' death squad ??

  • Comment number 19.


    I wonder how many other CxO level executives have given in to temptation and used shares as collateral for personal loans.

    This is not a story about one man and his personal misdemeanour.

    Many senior executives receive substantial amounts of shares to supplement their salary. I'm sure David Ross is not the first or only one to have been tempted to convert these shares into real (?) money through using them to support loans.

    I think it's called having your cake and eating it.

    Expect to see more of these coming out of the woodwork in the coming months and years.

  • Comment number 20.

    The real story here is another brilliant selection under Boris Johnson!

    How is this man the Mayor?

  • Comment number 21.

    It is possible for every director of a plc, particularly one listed on the main market, to know what they can and cannot do with the shares that thay own in that plc.

    As a past director in an AIM listed plc, I knew that before I did anything with my shares I checked with our legal people what I could do & when I could do it.

    Ross has absolutely no excuses. To me it is symptomatic of a cavalier attitude to fundamental business ethics and his relationship with the investment community.

  • Comment number 22.

    Looks like the old boy was trying to get some dough out the back door whilst the business is still worth something....lotta wonga.......

    guess even he began to question the city's valuations......was Carphone valued by the same accountants who assessed Foxtons estate agents....or Allianz Boots?

  • Comment number 23.

    This has no real financial impact on Carphone Warehouse whatsoever. The only impact that can possibly occur is that David Ross defaults on his loans and some or all of the shares are transferred from him to his creditor. There's then the possibility that the creditor sells these shares to the market, which may depress the share price for a period of time, but there is no effect on the underlying finances of the company.

  • Comment number 24.

    This man will be made an example of by the regulators who are always looking for someone to nail to their post failure regulatory cross, they see problems only after the event, then they point at it publicly while drooling, then they fine the miscreants and ban them, unless the bad people are bankers of course. The FSA has been guilty of market abuse many times, bank rights issues for a start. Who guards the guards? Nobody.

  • Comment number 25.

    I sense that he has been very foolish and his "gamble" sounds as though it is about to come undone.

    What then for him? His only entrance to the game is his vast wealth and the perception of acumen. After losing a sizeable fortune and showing vast ignorance (being kind) of his business responsibilities - he will no doubt be publishing a book and looking for some media interest!

    If he used his shares as collateral at 2006 market confidence - he is dead-in-the-water in a financial sense. What on earth posessed him to be so cavalier? Greed? I find it sad simply because it is all so predictable.

  • Comment number 26.

    If someone files for bankruptcy and divorce on the same day, who gets the assets
    (a) wife
    (b) creditors
    (c) lawyers

  • Comment number 27.

    "Ignorance of the law" - pull the other one its got a bell on!

  • Comment number 28.

    I'm sorry but for me Carphone Warehouse is one of those companies which has done nothing but contribute to the trade deficit and the credit bubble.

  • Comment number 29.

    I am sure the Nucons on here will have regard to David Cameron's briefing last night on avoiding "recession rhetoric" lest they damage his chances! ;-)
    Naturally Mr Dunstone supported his friend but can Robert tell us what the company said this morning in their conference call to analysts and investors?
    Investing in companies effectively controlled by two entrepreneurs entails a high risk when the market falls out of love with them (share price £140 on November 10th today 89p). There is a further risk of innocent non compliance because of their "animal spirits" for success. A business school case study is being played out here . Any MBA's around to offer advice?

  • Comment number 30.

    re: 26
    there is no joined up thinking between family law or insolvency law, and as both insolvency practitioners and family law solicitors are very anal, they will both pontificate and say 'me, that's the law"

  • Comment number 31.

    Further to my comment at #17

    I'd also be interested to see if any of the large accountancy firms were involved

    ..... I've payed hefty fee's for deals involving an awful lot less money, and I pay through the teeth so there aren't any Administrative Oversights!

    This stinks to high heaven

  • Comment number 32.

    Is he still eligible for Job Seekers Allowance if 177m in shares is used as collateral for loans

  • Comment number 33.

    I wonder why he happened to notice the "administrative oversight" at this particular moment. It could not of course be that, at this time of credit shortage, someone wants their money back, causing the oversight to come to light anyway, very soon.

    Carphone shareholders have really been let down very badly.

  • Comment number 34.

    Alas I fear that he is the tip of an iceberg and was unfortunate enough to be found out, though suspect that as the economy unfolds, at a seemingly ever more rapid pace, that these sort of exposes will increase.

    I also think some people on this blog don't seem to grasp what is so serious about Ross' actions and the stupidity of the lenders. Shares are not fixed capital their value is entirely speculative and so only become tangible as and when someone purchases them at the given price. Thus to take out loans on the basis of speculative investments is utterly foolhardy and helps explain how utterly incompetent and reckless the financial system is.

    Sadly it is further indication of the mess we are in and why things are about to get a whole lot worse.

  • Comment number 35.

    It's a bit like the rich russians, all money made is used to borrow and gamble even more

  • Comment number 36.

    This is absolutely astonishing, and must be absolutely embarassing for the rest of the board of Directors....and perhaps a betrayal of friendship for Mr Dunstone. What is next?
    Mr Dunstone should take a step back and forgive Mr Ross and realise that strategic friendships are hard to build at old age, this appears to be a temporary, but very costly mistake by Mr Ross.

    He (Mr Dunstone)and the board of directors must now move on and concerntrate on running the company as a profitable going concern.

    On the other hand, the LSE has to ensure that they have tighter "checks and controls" for policing listed corporations, and most importantly ensure that they invest more in training and continous education as a tool to remind directors of their fiducial and corporate responsibilities.
    Arthur Ngoka..

  • Comment number 37.


    Asset backed securities.

    Clearly it wasn't just home owners who used a market priced asset to borrow beyond their means.

    Who is the greater fool here? The person who borrows on this basis, or the regulated industry who lends it?

    Prices can go down as well as up.

    I like the iceberg analogy, but by now most people know that an iceberg is far more dangerous below water. At the moment, very few people are willing to admit that they may be some very big problems lurking beneath the surface in the financial industry.

  • Comment number 38.

    Only #12 Curzon would turn this into a political jab at New Labour!

  • Comment number 39.

    There are 4 schools of thought here:

    1. A Genuine Oversight By David Ross?
    2. An Element of Deception to withhold this information?
    3. or now the Creditors are calling tune and Mr Ross has been forced to make this disclosure?
    4. and finally with the possible breakup of the business and the Flotation of TalkTalk as a seperate entity this situation was bound to come to light?

    Obviously a dent in the Armour of Charles Dunstone but not life threatening at this stage?

  • Comment number 40.

    It is said elsewhere (Blatherskite) that Ross has previously used shares as collateral in 2002 and 2003 and properly reported it at the time.

    Assuming that is true, and given the large number of professionals that would have been around the loan transaction and who woudl ceratinly have reminded him, this was a pretty big "oversight"!

    This stroy has legs.

  • Comment number 41.

    This is a great pity as Carphone Warehouse is a fundamentally sound business going to new places. How this could now affect that business is a concern to us all.

    The view that there is more of this type of over-ambitious leverage to come to light is very valid.

    This sort of stupidity always comes to light at times of economic stress having in the past caused otherwise good businesses to disappear almost overnight.

    A business success does not make one a commercial genius. To confuse good luck with genius is a common failing among the boys about The City as we all now know.

  • Comment number 42.

    This looks very suspicious to me. The notion that Ross didn't know the rules is simply laughable. If new Directors of PLCs are taught one thing about compliance, it is the rules on share dealing and reporting.

    Let's be clear. What Ross was doing is not unusual. Plenty of Directors in his position borrow against stockholdings in their company, and then use the cash to invest in a more diversified portfolio of assets. That's very sensible. Just ask ex-Enron staff about the consequences of relying on one company for salary, pension (largely consisting of Enron stock), and savings (invested in Enron stock). Typically, Directors are limited as to how many and how frequently they can dispose of shareholdings. Frequently, banks require them to maintain holdings as a condition of getting finance. Therefore, they need to resort to this type of practice in order to have a more balanced portfolio of savings.

    However, Directors' using their stock normally correctly disclose their dealings. They certainly know the rules. Which begs the question why Ross kept quiet. And why has he now disclosed these loans? I suspect the latter could be because he's been asked for more collateral against his loans as the value of CPW declines. The loans are said to be not in default at present, the implication being that they are on the verge of going non-compliant, meaning that the banks are about to take ownership of his shares in lieu of their debts.

    Finally, the idea that Ross resigned as a matter of principle, forget it. He was fired for breaching a basic duty as a Director.

  • Comment number 43.

    Various comments point to the "honourable" thing this wealthy businessman has done. Was it honourable to avoid disclosing how the shares were being used when such an announcement would most likely result in a drop in those shares' value (due to uncertainty over who really owns those shares, as Robert says)?

    Hmmmm, rich man fails to follow rules in order to protect own interests. Sounds like just about everyone who had could have worked to avoid the current financial meltdown but chose not to when there was a quick buck to be made. He may be a role model to the corrupt City but he sure ain't one for the rest of us!

  • Comment number 44.

    Are we surprised by the poor judgement exposed at Carphone Warehouse? I seem to recall the employment by this company of a convicted felon with "incurable alzheimers" in a rather senior position. Remember Saunders anyone?

  • Comment number 45.

    the higher the monkey climbs the more he gets exposed

  • Comment number 46.

    The term administrative oversight sounds weak but what ever we may think the guy did the right thing on principle.

    He did not do into any denial or attempt to sweat things out and out stupid diversionary stories.

    As other contributers have said what a shame our politicians can not grasp they are no better than anyone else or above the law .

    Well done Mr Ross for doing the right thing, perhaps you could have a quiet chat with those running the Government and inform them that their continuous denial of responsibility or their messs topped with all their endless spin makes us all sick and we expect them to push off into obscurity asap.

  • Comment number 47.

    This is not an administrative oversight. This is two years of serial breach of rules by Mr Ross. Did he resign because he suddenly read the rule book and felt terrible about his errors? Or was it that someone finally tracked this abuse of rules down and confronted him with his wrong doing?

    Presumably one answer might be that a lender called the collateral when whatever he borrowed the cash for sank beneath the waves.

    Or perhaps he has just done no more than clock up the mother of all Pay as You Go bills.

  • Comment number 48.

    It may be possible in theory, but recalling it in detail in the middle of running a company in this kind of recession is why most large companies run a Private Office. I stick by my comments on the codification of the justice system.

  • Comment number 49.

    #3 Agree entirely.

    No mention of surprising increase in retail sales over the weekend, the global surge in equity markets this morning or that the Governme'nts take up of RBS shares is now in the black.

    Surprise that isn't it? Or is it the kind of positive news that Robert Peston is genetically disinclined to report. Because let's face it, good news just isn't newsworthy.

    No Robert let's continue to talk ourselves down and have a miserable Christmas.

  • Comment number 50.

    #49 "Dog bites man" is not news;"Man bites dog" *IS* news !!

    The question here is "Is he reporting the news or is he blogging (i.e. sharing his insights into the latest events) ??"

    If it is the first, then the above applies !! If it is the second, then his worldview is very bleak, indeed !! I've heard of "dour Scots" but this must be taking things to the extreme !!

  • Comment number 51.

    Ha!! Ross gets his come-uppance at last! His term of office at Gondola Holdings (owners until last year of Pizza Ezpress and Zizzi) was far from succesful. About the only thing he contributed was to complain about the coffee supplier before vanishing below the horizon but still taking the money.

    There are many who have worked with him who will not be shedding tears at this news.

  • Comment number 52.

    49 & 50.

    Its because its short term, tomorrow the profit taking will kick in and we'll be back to square one.

    Am i a man or a dog?????

  • Comment number 53.

    A little Googling provides the (probable) answers.

    Firstly, the man has a law degree, and is a qualified accountant who earlier worked for Arthur Andersen. An "oversight"? Yeah, right.

    Mr Ross has been a lavish property investor, here and abroad.

    The combination of the property market slump, and shares pledged as collateral which are down nearly 75% in 12 months is a toxic one for his lenders.

    As others have suggested, there's more to come on this.

  • Comment number 54.

    Probably symptomatic of other malpractice that has got the banks, the city and the economy into trouble. Borrowing at low interest rates against overvalued shares and overvalued property to invest in more shares and property was the positive feedback loop that created the bubble.

    Collapse of the bubble has thrown the system into reverse. As Ross, the buy to letters, the carry traders and others sell to recover their financial probity the values of shares and property plummet excessively, damaging economic confidence and leading to the downward spiral.

    It is time to recognise the deflation that has occurred already in company values and property values and that we now risk placing too high a value in cash. We should not await a "fire-sale" of the rest of the working economy that will cripple any reflation opportunity by destruction of productive capacity. In the absence of bank sourced capital investment it is left to govenments and their keynesian intervention to preserve productive and service industries until markets recover.

  • Comment number 55.

    Whether an oversight or deliberate the end result is that the shareholders (of which I am one) have lost money because of it and that's not good news.

    I'm inclined to think it has got something to do with creditors wanting more collateral since the price has taken such a dive recently. If the worst happens and creditors take shares and sell them the price will drop yet again. This is why directors have to disclose these kinds of things.

    I'd love to have been a fly on the wall when they had to tell Best Buy, who paid £1.1billion just a few months ago for their half for the retail portion’s joint venture. That's more than the whole company is worth now.

  • Comment number 56.

    Law Library Part 3
    So be careful when you make affiliations
    'Cause you could be guilty by association
    The law makers is constantly creating
    Ways to enforce incarceration
    Take a loan from a bank, I'm borrowing money
    I take a loan from my homies, I'm laundering money
    If I loan my man some bread to go a get a key
    And he go and flip that money and bring it back to me
    It's called enterprise corruption, E Felony
    They could hit me with that charge called conspiracy

  • Comment number 57.


    FSTE looking strong at just 35% down on the year - you're right let's get the bunting out!

  • Comment number 58.

    # 57

    But only 2 down days for FTSE since 21 November. Stock markets are forward looking, so a stable market, hopefully even a rising one, suggests an improvement in the real economy in 6-9 months time.

    I agree the decline has been painful. I now have a lot less invested in UK shares than I did a few months ago courtesy of the fall !!! However, I also agree with the sentiment in #49. There's actually a few positive signs amongst all the gloomy news. The notion that the world is going to end has now been averted, I think. We should be a bit more balanced in all this.

  • Comment number 59.

    This speaks volumes for the Compliance functions of Carphone Warehouse, National Express and Big Yellow Group that Mr Ross failed to understand his responsibilities as a Director. Surely not a failing on the part of one company's Compliance team but three !!!

  • Comment number 60.

    Taken from the CPW website it goes on to say "At The Carphone Warehouse everything we do is based on our 'five fundamental rules'.... one of those rules is "The reputation of the whole company is in the hands of each individual". Clearly he has fallen on his sword and deserves his fate. I wonder what other individuals have hiding in their cupboards

  • Comment number 61.

    # 59

    How about just a failing by Ross? I'm the biggest critic of Compliance as a function (usually known as the Business Prevention Department in most financial firms). However, possession of psychic powers should not be a requirement of people in any role, including Compliance.

    Ross ignored the rules. He knew full well what they were. He's had to own up to what he's been doing, and now he's been fired.

  • Comment number 62.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 63.

    What a lot of hype over nothing that affects Carphone Warehouse's intrinsic value, but may grab attention.

  • Comment number 64.

    I got a beautiful wife, kids and a gorgeous home
    What would make me jump in the tub with a cordless phone?

  • Comment number 65.

    Once upon a time Robert Peston had scoops. Now he is reduced to merely commenting on the news. We can all do that.

    As for the unknown co-owner of Carphone Warehouse frankly the less said the better.
    Except for one thing.

    The faith that people place in the capitalist system is severely undermined by these sort of antics. The lesson is that a few benefit hugely, and by improper means according to stockmarket rules, at the expense of the many.

    Nothing has changed since the age of the feudal barons.

    The revelation of this sort of behaviour in a time of austerity will inevitably cause a wave of revulsion and herald a new age of anti-capitalism. Because it is a system which has let the majority down and benefitted the few.

    The Tory party will have to disassociate itself from the de-regulated lassiez faire business practices ushered in under Thatcher, which are proving to be such an embarrassment to them now.

  • Comment number 66.

    20% of the firm pledged as collateral, and no one was informed?

    Who needs a personal loan that big, for what?
    Did he invest that money into a hedge fund, perhaps? Real estate? Credit swaps? Oil futures?

    Holy cow!

    I firmly believe one reason the consumers have so severely retreated from the marketplace is that they see this sort of crazy, stupid behaviour at the highest levels in both business and governance, and their sense of trust has eroded.

    Why should I spend money on these people, when they don't have the sense to come in out of the rain?

    Until that trust is restored, recovery will not take hold.

    20%! Holy cow!

  • Comment number 67.

    ssh - don't say anything about Cameron, £142,000, Ross or donations.

    Might be embarassing.

    One for Nick R?

  • Comment number 68.

    It is a shock! But when you do things like using your shares for personal loans it is not to end in a favourable light...

  • Comment number 69.

    Apparently Ross pledged his shares as collateral to support struggling commercial property investments.

    We're talking about GBP 100 million plus here, which to me sounds like a business venture, not just a bit of fun or personal investing.

    So Mr Ross probably breached two major terms of his employment contract: he systematically ignored Stock Exchange reporting rules on Directors' share dealings; and he had a second job (his property empire) almost certainly without CPW's knowledge.

    Would be interesting to know if he's "resigned" from his other directorships yet.

  • Comment number 70.

    JayPee28bpr - #69

    Secondary job??? He is a non-exec at CPW - he stopped working there full time a number of years ago. He did a bad thing but he has not been moonlighting!!

  • Comment number 71.

    Will posters passim please stop assuming that he 'bet 20% of the Company' just recently?

    He used the shares THAT WERE HIS as a guarantee for an investment into a property fund he set up with Morgan Stanley in a joint venture in 2006. There is nothing wrong or improper about that.

    His mistake (and it is a grievous one) is that he forgot or wilfully neglected to tell his Chairman. Had he told his Chairman then this would be a non-story, but he didn't so it is rightly a huge story.

  • Comment number 72.

    "The tycoon who fell to Earth"

    Absolute tosh!

    I noted this on the front of my newspaper but really Robert couldn't care less. But bringing said rag home I passed a car up on bricks effectively which talked about highly placed wusses in politics - seemingly and another vehicle whose coachwork mentioned "being impressed" - sort of.

    And the names in the David Ross cast list? lol

    So we blame wusses do we? The media?

    I blame the media messengers who put these feet of clay statues up there and keep them there. Despite being supposedly intelligent people. The media plays along with a rather dangerous game - yet on other matters lie without hesitation and later apology.

    Like most people, my feet are of clay also but I am not puffed up by daily doses of absolute rubbish about whose party I attended and who is hanging off my arm whilst I do so.

  • Comment number 73.

    I wondered when the wheels would start to come off the Carphone wagon.

    Suffice it to say that as a former employee, I was curious as to how long the party would last...

    Ross always did come across as a tad... eccentric. CPW was very much Dunstone's brainchild and he has been the driving force behind it. Ross just seemed to be one of the key initial backers. His contribution to strategy never seemed to get much airtime within the company for some reason. All we tended to hear about was his apparently eventful and sometimes lurid private life rather than his business contribution.

    I cant see his contribution being missed much, whatever it amounts to.

  • Comment number 74.

    Thank you moderator for your kind assistance.

    No doubt Mr. Ross's omission was inadvertent. Equally without doubt, the lender inadvertently omitted to point out to Mr. Ross that he would need to register the transaction to perfect the lender's security. It seems to me that we have not got to the bottom of this story yet.

  • Comment number 75.

    What a contrast between the business world and politics

    A businessman does something slightly naughty-- but hardly the crime of the century-they were his shares afterall and resigns from the business he helped found

    Politicians start illegal wars, commit fraud on expenses, disregard centuries of tradition allow a highly dubious arrest and blame it on subordinates, solicit illegal donations from russian gangsters, flog seats in the house of lords , repeatedly take no blame for absolutely disastorous mistakesuch as data loss. They think ordinary people should do what they are told and have no hesitation in criminalising things like litter droppoing yet regard any law banning something they want to do as automatically invalid

    Nothwithstanding all the above however they claim that standards in politics are higher than in business and society at large

    and they wonder why society at large hates them

  • Comment number 76.

    O.K then, Charles Dunstone has been friend with David Ross for over 20 years. The claim is that Charles was not aware about his friend, (rosso's) actions until Dec the 7th. I can`t see how.

    In my opinion the book should be thrown at David Ross. We are constantly being reminded by adverts that there are people out there cheating the benefit system... What`s the difference with David Ross`s action???

    Had the market been in a healthy position, David Ross would have made a lot of money.His companies would have claim how marvellous they are doing. The rest of us would have known no different.

    " The reputation of the company lies on each individual"


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