Times are tough for start-up businesses in the construction sector. Especially those with little to offer but their own hubris.
EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES
Jo “Negreedy” Negrini has applied to strike-off the consultancy business that she set-up in the weeks after her abrupt departure as Croydon Council chief executive.
Negrini and her co-director, Jill Walsh, submitted an “Application to Strike Off” to Companies House on Thursday for their company, Total Place Ltd.
Negrini quit Fisher’s Folly in August 2020 with a controversial £437,000 pay-off.
She has been the subject of questioning ever since by officials and lawyers working for the council over her part in the council’s financial collapse two years ago, and the management of housing developer Brick by Brick and the fiasco of the £67million refurbishment of the Fairfield Halls arts centre. There have been some suggestions from Katharine Street sources that Negrini has not always been entirely co-operative with the enquiries.
Total Place Ltd was registered as a company by Negrini and Walsh in October 2020.
With its registered office at 55, North Cross Road, East Dulwich, Total Place gave as its nature of business “Development of building projects” and “Other specialised construction activities not elsewhere classified”.
In its two-year existence, Total Place has submitted only one set of “micro” accounts that were signed off in January 2022. These show a capital and reserves balance of £60,828, after taking into account £16,690 owed to creditors.
By applying to strike off the company, there is unlikely to be any further accounts placed into the public domain.
Last year, Inside Croydon reported how Negrini, who is 61, had been taken on for some unspecified “consultancy work” by construction firm Arup, a company which had benefited from several contracts with Croydon Council when the self-proclaimed “regeneration practitioner” was in charge at Fisher’s Folly.
We also reported how the council had received legal advice from an eminent KC that if they were to pursue Negrini through the courts to recover some of her massive pay-out, Croydon would have a “better than evens chance” of winning their case.
The directors of a company applying for a strike-off do not have to give any formal reason for their decision.
“It could be something as straightforward as a simple change of plans by the directors,” a local source with accountancy and business background suggested to Inside Croydon today.
“Or it might just be that a business dependent on Negrini’s reputation in the industry isn’t working as well as they might have hoped and they’ve decided to pack it in.”
Read more: Negrini and execs ‘failed to ensure council was acting lawfully’
Read more: Satire is dead: Brick by Brick and ‘the power of social housing’
Read more: The bottom line on the failure of ex-CEO Negrini: £613,895
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