Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2001/01/05/zy_com_up_for_sale/

Zy.com up for sale

But what the hell is going on behind the scenes?

By Kieren McCarthy

Posted in Business, 5th January 2001 18:35 GMT

We were surprised to see an ad in the FT today announcing that Zy.com was up for sale. The site is part of a whole Zy conglomerate, run by young man Charles Moir, who co-founded it with Nova Fisher, having made a fortune out of Acorn a coupla years ago.

We thought that Zy.com - a site that allows people to build good-quality Web sites online - was doing rather well. Nearly a year ago today it got £5 million in funding, and it currently gets about 14 million hits a month. Not bad.

So following the ad we decided to find out why they were selling it. Are they selling part or all of the Zy company? Is it because they reckon they can get a good price for it now? Are there are other plans afoot? Or has the whole thing gone titsup.com?

After the head of PR for the company was unavailable for several hours and her colleagues had failed to get any information back to us, we thought we'd call up the "Joint Adminstrators" in charge of the deal. Mike Hore and Simon Bower at RSM Robson Rhodes. They're not available either. But we can have a sales pack sent in the post.

Sod this. So we track down Zy's office number (no easy task). We ask to speak to Charles Moir. Please call back in five minutes. We do. When Charles is informed of who we are, he becomes unavailable. Speak to the administrators. But we've tried. You'll have to speak to the administrators. Look, we just want to know what's behind the sale. Well, you'll have to speak... No one will talk to us. Do you realise that we will have to assume the worst? Can we have some information please? You'll have to speak to the... Adminstrators, yeah. Why? We want to talk to you about your business. Er, er. Hangs up.

Both the PR woman and the administrators are again unreachable.

Now. Zy.com is a good site, but what the hell are we supposed to make of this? It seems particularly short-sighted to put an ad in the FT for chrissakes and then be completely unprepared when people call up asking questions. Let's be honest, it don't look good. In case you wondered, administrative receivers are what companies (or more frequently, their banks) call in when they go titsup.com. ®