KMG Promotions was incorporated in November 2016 and traded as a publisher with registered offices in the Wirral. Since it began trading, the business self-published two different titles: Crime Awareness magazine, and Scorch, a fire-prevention magazine.
As a source of income, KMG Promotions offered prospective clients advertising space, on the understanding that a copy of the magazine was going to be sent to a police and fire station local to the client. Prospective clients would also receive their own copy of the magazine they advertised in.
But at the hearing to consider the petition to wind up the business, the High Court in Manchester heard that clients had started to complain about KMG Promotions’ activities before the Insolvency Service conducted confidential enquiries into the company’s activities.
Investigators found that 771 customers had paid for adverts but that only 340 adverts appeared in the magazines that were available to the investigators, and the number of magazines printed were short of clients' expectations.
Further enquiries found that the company made misleading claims to potential advertisers, including the volume of printing and distribution, KMG Promotions' charitable status or not-for-profit business, as well as previous business relationships with the advertisers.
The company falsely informed clients that it was calling from the real emergency services and also pursued advertisers using aggressive sales tactics.
The business was wound up in the public interest last Monday (23 March) by Deputy District Judge Watkin at the High Court in Manchester and the Official Receiver has been appointed as liquidator.
Insolvency Service chief investigator Scott Crighton said: “As part of our enquiries, we spoke to KMG Promotions’ customers and none of them were satisfied with the level of service they received.
“The company acted in an unscrupulous manner and thankfully the courts recognised the severity of their actions when they ordered for the publisher to be wound up.”
This case is the third of its kind to come to light in recent months, with another Wirral-based publisher, The Hannay Partnership, and Liverpool-based Print Publishing also both wound up last year after making similar false claims about their business activities.