NBR has an article [paywalled] about the shenanigans at Scoop.
Reading between the lines it seems some ‘investors’ have been tickled up for a lot of money, even as Alistair Thompson seeks to crowd-fund Scoop.
Ownership changes at news and press release website Scoop mean several shareholders are short of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
In December the website’s majority shareholder, Margaret Thompson (mother of Scoop publisher Alastair Thompson), exercised her power of sale under her first-ranked security, effectively wiping out all other shareholders.
Imarda co-founder and chief executive Selwyn Pellett held 20% of the shares in Scoop, with the rest being split between several shareholders including journalists Gordon Campbell, Russell Brown and Pattrick Smellie.
As reported by NBR ONLINE, the Thompsons have plans for Scoop to become “publicly owned” and implement an “invisible paywall.” These changes are part of “Operation Chrysalis,” for which Scoop is crowd funding.
The old Scoop Media is now a shell company and Ms Thompson is the sole shareholder of MOT Group Holdings, the new owner of Scoop Subscriber Services.
For someone who bangs on about ethics in journalism he sure seems to have a wonky view on what that actually means. Firstly he was moonlighting with the Internet Party while a member of the Press Gallery, how he eve got let back in is beyond me. Now it appears he has tucked Selwyn Pellett who is less than impressed.
Mr Pellett tells NBR ONLINE that Ms Thompson was “under financial duress” and had securities over the assets of the company by her loan.
Asked how much he had invested in Scoop, Mr Pellett says, “How much I invested and how much it gobbled up are two different answers.”
“The truthful answer is that I don’t know, but [the total amount lost] would be approaching $200,000 to $250,000.” Read more »