First Solutions potential comeback

First Solutions Community MeetingMONEY transfer company First Solution Money Transfer Ltd is up and running under new management following its controversial collapse last year.

To celebrate the new set-up, a formal launch was held at the Oldham Millennium Centre where local community members were able to meet the new management team, which consists of 13 former agents from previous branches.

Hundreds of people who lost money sending funds to Bangladesh through First Solution during its sudden closure in June 2007, have now been promised their cash back after a successful rescue of the company

For 10 months some of the former agents and branch staff of First Solution have been working towards a ‘corporate rescue package’ to get the company back on track but most importantly to help pay remittance creditors back.

First Solution’s new chairman, Mohammed Abdul Mannan, said: “It has taken more than 10 months to reach a satisfactory conclusion following negotiations with various parties involved in the subsequent purchase of the First Solution name and the relevant associated assets.

“One of the main intentions of the new management in rescuing First Solution has always been to pay back as much money as possible to people who lost funds. The new team has been working on a voluntary basis out of their moral and social obligations in the interest of restoring trust and confidence in the community.

“To endorse this rescue as a positive way forward and to maintain commercial value of the ‘brand,’ the business will continue to be known as First Solution, although the board and senior management are completely new.”

He added: “There is a tremendous sense of moral responsibility in the Bangladeshi community and we want to do everything possible to protect its reputation.

“Although, the new management is not legally responsible for the liability of the former Company, we are putting in significant funds straight away to pay back some of the money which was lost.

“If this brave step to rescue First Solution had not been undertaken by the new management, the alternative would have been less favourable for the creditors.”

New managing director, Matakin Ali said: “What happened to First Solution was a terrible blow to many people. We hope they will see that by rescuing the company, we can restore trust as well as people’s bank balances – and continue to provide a successful and efficient money transfer service.

“Furthermore, we believe that the First Solution ‘brand’ still has strong commercial value attached to it, particularly because of our wide and established network of branches throughout the country.

“We have also put in place safeguards that should prevent such a catastrophe happening again”

It is anticipated that over a £1m will be made available to remittance creditors by the new management as part of their rescue package. More than £500,000 has already been paid to the remittance creditor of the 13 branches represented by the new management team.

The remaining of the balance will be paid to these creditors, in instalments, over the next few months.

In addition, it is expected that further funds will be available to other creditors made up of £300,000 secured by a deed and £200,000 voluntary commitment obtained from the previous directors, by the official receiver, as part of the rescue package.

Funds could also be available from the sales of the remaining assets by the appointed liquidator, estimated to be up to £300,000.

The new management of First Solution Money Transfer Ltd have also put in place the necessary infrastructure, systems and measures to maintain a strong position in the market and prevent any potential risk by being exposed to currency exchange losses.

The previous directors of First Solution, namely – Dr Mahmood, Mr Rumi and Mr Hadi are not part of the new management or involved with the present First Solution Money Transfer Ltd and the new set-up in any way.

All community leaders, businesses and many creditors who have been helping to find a suitable solution are being requested to continue their support.

Branches who took the rescue initiative forward include; Bradford, Bristol, Burnley, Coventry, Edinburgh, Leicester, Luton, Newcastle, Oldham, Portsmouth, Southampton; Small Heath and Walsall (Birmingham).

Mustafa