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Thursday, 12 May 2016

RST Contracts Ltd and a Russian 'buyer' + compare & contrast

On Monday I was contacted by a senior member of the fine wine trade with the following query about RST Contracts Ltd:  

'I wanted to ask you if you have come across the above company? ( I have just been reading your February post on London Commodity Exchange with interest. I have a client who lost a lot of wine/money in the Bordeaux Fine Wine saga, and has been repeatedly contacted by RST Contracts who claim that they have c. £250k of his wine, that they have a Russian buyer for it and that he needs to pay c. £40k VAT – refundable – in advance and he will then be sent the proceeds.'

I contacted David Ingram and Hannah Davie at Grant Thornton, who are dealing with the winding up of Bordeaux Fine Wine Ltd. Ingram had told me back in February that there were no stocks of wine magically lying outside the UK:

'We have undertaken a comprehensive forensic exercise on the little wine that was actually purchased by Bordeaux Fine Wines and are satisfied that it has been accounted for. There is certainly no stocks of wine overseas.' David Ingram (February 2016.

On Tuesday Hannah Davie of Grant Thornton replied: 

'I confirm that we have heard from several creditors of Bordeaux who have been contacted by RST Contracts advising that they have identified their wine, which they can sell for them to Russian or off shore investors, for an upfront fee.

One creditor in particular asked RST Contracts for documentation to evidence they had located his wine and the identity of the purchaser etc, but was not provided with anything from RST.'

Grant Thornton's view is that this story about a 'Russian buyer' is another example of advance fee fraud associated with the non-purchase of stocks of wine by Bordeaux Fine Wine Ltd. 


RST Contracts Ltd was incorporated on 9th April 2013. There are four current directors: Albert Sidney Brown (DOB: 11.1948 – software engineer), Caroline Clarke (DOB: March 1953 – management accountant), Maxine Matthews (DOB: October 1967 – administrator) and Kenneth Peter Ward (DOB: February 1953 – director). Share capital as of 1.6.2015 was £1 held by Peter Kenneth Ward. The registered office and trading address is: 33 New Barn Street, London, E13 8JZ – a residential address in Plaidstow. Accounts to 30.4.2014) for a dormant company were filed on 4.11.14. The latest accounts (30.4.2015) show net assets of £1,753,063.

The website for RST Contracts Ltd was registered on 17.2.2016. 


Websites: Compare and contrast – Amphora Portfolio Management – RST Contracts Ltd
RST Contracts and their four directors are clearly advocates of recycling as a comparison between their website and that of Amphora Portfolio Management shows that much if not all of the RST website has been copied word for word from Amphora. See below.

RST Contracts Ltd have used Amphora's material without permission. David Jackson, a director of Amphora Portfolio Management Ltd, wrote to the directors of RST Contracts Ltd on 9th May 2016 requiring them to undertake by the end of Wednesday 11th May 2016 to cease using the material and to seek his permission for any future use. RST have until close of business on Friday 13th May 2016 or face the possibility of legal action.   

Why Amphora?: 

Why RST Contracts Ltd?:

It would seem that the directors of RST Contracts Ltd have yet to master the full intricacies of find and replace as they have forgotten to fully replace here – '.... but at Amphora we argue ....'     Oops!! 


I will certainly steer well clear of RST Contracts Ltd no matter how persuasive their promises of Russian buyers may sound ..... 

Update: 17th May 2016

RST Contracts Ltd website has been taken down by its ISP. See comments.  


  1. That RST website is really taking the piss. The content, including blog posts, partners and FAQs is all a complete rip of AMP. Proper dodgy

  2. They certainly are. I invited the directors of RST Contracts Ltd to respond to my post – to date no reply. More importantly Amphora gave RST until close of business today to remove their copyright material from the RST site. So far RST have failed to remove Amphora's text.

  3. I've had no response either. Nor can I raise a director by phone. Have now approached the company hosting their domain asking them to pull it down, and will be taking legal advice on Monday.

  4. Well it looks like the site has been successfully taken down

  5. The web hosting company have now pulled down the site. It's also been pointed out that RST deliberately prevented their website from indexing, meaning that it wouldn't show up in Google searches. They were evidently rather shy of the limelight.

  6. The moves people pull these days not like the good old days with Raun Austin and Steve Cleeve