Banker in the fur­ni­ture busi­ness

Finweek English Edition - - Letters -

ONCE AGAIN while re­view­ing the trad­ing per­for­mance of African Bank In­vest­ments Ltd (Abil) you sug­gest its sub­sidiary – El­ler­ine – is caus­ing it in­di­ges­tion due to poor credit grant­ing im­me­di­ately prior to Abil’s takeover of El­ler­ine. I’ve never had any con­nec­tion what­so­ever with the El­ler­ine group, but as some­body who has spent many years in the fur­ni­ture in­dus­try I be­lieve that to be a red her­ring.

It’s well known within the trade that El­ler­ine has al­ways been very con­ser­va­tive in its doubt­ful debts pro­vi­sion­ing. The prob­lem lies with the cur­rent man­age­ment team ap­pointed by Abil. That team con­sists, in the main, of tal­ented in­di­vid­u­als but with no ex­pe­ri­ence what­so­ever in the credit re­tail fur­ni­ture in­dus­try, work­ing with a num­ber of ex­ec­u­tives from the failed Relyant group. Blam­ing past El­ler­ine man­age­ment for the group’s de­cline is sim­ply not true. ROBERT SHRIRE

Sand­ton

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