Energy firm closed after mis-selling

A Rochdale firm involved in the mis-selling of solar powered energy products has been ordered into liquidation following an Insolvency Service investigation.

The Insolvency Service found that between April 2009 and January 2010 Solar Power Wind Energy Company Limited used local and national newspapers and magazines to promote its products to new customers. SPWEC's marketing material and website promoted itself as a "large provider of quality products in the renewable energy sector" offering "high quality renewable energy systems at an affordable cost."

Customers of SPWEC were required to pay a minimum deposit of £500 with the full balancing payment due 10 days before the agreed installation date. SPWEC's terms and conditions stated each customer would be entitled to a "full and frank" refund if SPWEC failed to install the goods within three days of the agreed installation date.

The investigation found that SPWEC took deposits and payments from customers totalling more than £62,000. However, the company failed to supply the purchased goods to the majority of its customers and further failed to install the goods supplied to at least six of its customers. SPWEC was wound up on the grounds that it was trading to the detriment of the public and in particular that the prices quoted for the supply of goods was deliberately low to entice customers to place orders and SPWEC had taken orders for goods it had not sourced.

Alex Deane of The Insolvency Service's company investigations units said: "At a time when we are all looking for greener energy products, it is particularly regrettable that a business like SPWEC should use dishonest practices to exploit that demand for its own ends. The public should rest assured that the Insolvency Service works hard to remove such companies from the business environment. The action taken on this matter sends a clear and simple message to company directors that if you run a company that deliberately sets out to cheat customers you will be closed down and further action may be taken against you personally."

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