A billionaire bungalow tycoon has been plunged right into a chapter row amid allegations of a path of unpaid money owed.
Robert Bull, who lately sprang from nowhere to be named amongst Britain’s wealthiest people, has had a part of his property empire positioned into administration by one of many nation’s greatest listed personal fairness buyers, the Telegraph can disclose.
Mr Bull has disputed the authorized motion, claiming that it’s “based mostly on false claims and unfounded info”.
Nicknamed “Bob the billionaire bungalow builder”, Mr Bull was a brand new entrant on the Sunday Instances wealthy checklist final month together with his web value estimated at practically £2bn.
RoyaleLife, the corporate he co-founded, lays declare to be the UK’s largest bungalow supplier and Mr Bull has constructed the enterprise by turning caravan parks throughout the nation into single-story villages.
Nevertheless, courtroom filings reveal a slew of insolvency claims have been filed towards corporations run by Mr Bull in latest months.
The newest was final week, when Metropolis legislation agency DLA Piper served Mr Bull’s leisure estates enterprise, Time Group Holdings Restricted, with a winding up petition.
It adopted the identical entity being served with a winding up petition by HM Income & Customs on the finish of final 12 months.
RoyaleLife, in the meantime, has had an administrator appointed over it by ICG-Longbow Senior Secured UK Property Debt Investments, a debt fund run by a subsidiary of Intermediate Capital Group, the £4bn FTSE 250 investor that’s listed on the London Inventory Change.
A spokesman for ICG Longbow stated: “We appointed directors in relation to our funding in RoyaleLife.
“Our main responsibility is to our funds and their buyers, and this was a prudent measure to guard the corporate’s pursuits following a winding up petition being filed by a third-party creditor towards the debtors underneath the loans.”
Mr Bull, government chairman of RoyaleGroup, stated: “Like many corporations we had a difficult time rising from the pandemic and, as an entity, we turned topic to winding up orders based mostly on false claims and unfounded info.
“These have both been dismissed or are the topic of authorized motion.
“Greater than 200 authorized entities comprise the RoyaleGroup and these stay unaffected. I subsequently need to reassure our funders, suppliers, residents, and workers that it is rather a lot enterprise as traditional.”
The row threatens to overshadow a riches-to-rags-to-riches story that has helped win Mr Bull glowing press protection of his life story.
Mr Bull was “born with a platinum and diamond-encrusted spoon in my mouth” in keeping with a newspaper article in Might.
He stated: “My three sisters and I had been introduced up with every part we may need. My grandfather began out within the caravan park business in 1945 and all his kids, together with my dad, went into the identical enterprise, which developed into the modular-build bungalow product we provide at present.”
His father carried on the household enterprise till he “misplaced every part within the Nineteen Nineties banking disaster”.
Mr Bull then rebuilt the empire and established Britain’s second-biggest caravan group together with his enterprise associate. Nevertheless, in 2016 the corporate bumped into hassle and was declared bankrupt, reportedly underneath the load of money owed totalling £3.5m.
After a interval of ill-health, the entrepreneur struck on the concept of changing caravan parks into bungalow villages. He has pitched the properties to ageing Britons eager to downsize.
RoyaleLife is constructing 64 bungalow communities with an additional 40 in planning. A spokesman for the corporate stated a “recapitalisation of the enterprise is going down with the goal of putting in 1,000 new bungalows throughout the UK, beginning later this 12 months”.
Mr Bull’s return to success has allowed him to take pleasure in luxurious trappings akin to a £10m mansion in Southampton. It has a 100ft kitchen, three-lane ten pin bowling alley and 6 double garages that home a £4m assortment of 12 supercars.
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