Rachael Singh, Accountancy Age, Wednesday 30 June 2010 at 08:29:00

Chad Griffin and Simon Granger of FTI Consulting appointed jointadministrators to Vantis

Top 20 firm Vantis announced it has entered administration weeks aftersuspending shares.

A statement by the board said while directors had ?vigorously explored? everyavailable option to reduce debt, there was a lack of progress with thoseoptions.

Chad Griffin and Simon Granger of FTI Consulting has now been appointed jointadministrators.

Accountancy Age has learned the insolvency arm of the London office could besold to three former Vantis insolvency practitioners, with Jeremy French, GeoffRowley and former PwC partner Charles Turner expected to buy out theLondon-based insolvency practice.

RSM Tenon, another listed accountancy firm, is thought to be pursuing a buyout the rest of Vantis? London operations.

Vantis has had a tough year. Its tax arm suffered a reputational hit when aninvestigation into charity gift aid tax schemes saw now-former managers RobertFaichney and David Perrin facing criminal charges.

The pair launched a legal challenge against the firm for more than 1m inunpaid salaries, bonuses and damages for wrongful dismissal.

The firm has also been under pressure, in part due to its failure to curefees from the troubled administration of Stanford International Bank, operatedby Texan Allen Stanford.

In June, liquidators from Vantis working on the Stanford case were removedfrom their posts by an Antiguan court. The high court of Antigua decided Vantis'Nigel Hamilton-Smith and Peter Wastell, joint liquidators of Stanford, should beremoved from office and alternative liquidators appointed. The firm has appealedthe decision.

Auditors, Ernst & Young, issued a going concern in February when the firmreleased its interim results. The statement warned uncertainties from receivingfunds from the Stanford case, combined with cash flow and cost reductioninitiatives, put doubt on its ability to continue.

Further reading:
</br>BreakingNews: Vantis close to administration
</br>Taxscheme suspects Faichney and Perrin sue Vantis
</br>FTIConsulting called in to advise Vantis