Attempts by Focused Computer Technologies (FCT) to settle its debt with the Inland Revenue have been crushed, leaving it teetering on the edge of closure.
The Southampton reseller, which has a #45,000 outstanding Inland Revenue bill, was issued with a winding-up petition on 6 May. FCT requested to have the hearing adjourned, a measure accepted by the Inland Revenue on the condition that it received #15,000 before the court date of 10 June.
However, FCT's problems were compounded on 5 June when the National Westminster Bank froze the company's assets.
According to Norman Tenray, FCT managing director, the problems stemmed from a year-long trading agreement the reseller had with a Russian company, ending in November 1996.
Tenray said: '$122,000 was due from the company, but nothing happened.' He said FCT ended up with a debt of #100,000, lost lines of credit with suppliers in February and was left trading on #11,000 credit cards.
Then in February, Customs and Excise issued FCT a winding-up petition for a debt of #47,000. Tenray asserted: 'We managed to pay off the debt in full to Customs and Excise and some of the debt to the Inland Revenue, but when we attempted to set up a payment schedule it was unwilling to accept. When we sent post-dated cheques, they were sent back.'
The Inland Revenue confirmed the date of the hearing but refused to comment further.
'I want to try and keep the company running,' said Tenray. 'But we cannot get access to money coming in to pay off the Inland Revenue so I have to kook at my options.'
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