New Sophisticated and Believable Scam Warning
It has come to our attention that various individual shareholders in SPARK Ventures plc have been targeted with a scam which is quite sophisticated and believable. Shareholders are being cold called with a proposed open offer and then sent by email supposed legal documents for the open offer from a third party calling themselves, International Brokers Worldwide.
The scam is offering shareholders the opportunity to buy new shares in SPARK Ventures plc at a realistic discount to the current share price. Our particular concern in relation to this scam is that the documents look legitimate and the offer looks quite realistic. Requests are made to shareholders from the third party to provide certain personal information and shareholding proof in order to proceed. The scam documents have not been produced by or in any way authorised by SPARK Ventures plc. SPARK Ventures plc is not currently or intending in the future to raise money by issuing new shares in an open offer or any other offer to shareholders. Any third party contact claiming otherwise is a scam and should be ignored or reported to the Company or the FSA.
Boiler Room Scams General Warning
Over the last year shareholders in SPARK Ventures plc have been targeted by fraudsters with other boiler room scams and we would like to warn shareholders in Spark Ventures plc to be aware of the type of scams being perpetrated.
Please all be on your guard – particularly in the case of unsolicited telephone calls offering to buy or sell shares.
Please note, Spark Ventures plc does not make unsolicited offers to buy or sell shares over the telephone. Any such calls you may receive are likely to be fraudulent.
We are aware of at least two variants of this scam:
1. A caller offers to buy your shares for a price much higher than their current market
value. The catch is that you are asked to make an upfront deposit or other payment
which is said to be returnable if the deal does not go ahead. You are unlikely to see
the money again.
2. A caller claims to be representing a company in which you have previously invested, and
offers you a bargain special offer on shares in another company. In many cases they
turn out to be shares in companies with little or no value, which prove difficult or
impossible to re-sell and which will almost certainly lose you money.
Please note Spark Ventures will not pass your personal information or contact details on to a third party without advising you first and then only with your permission. Unless you have requested us to do so, we will never contact you by telephone.
Fraudsters typically obtain the details of shareholders from a company's register of shareholders which has to be made public under the UK Companies Act. While the register of shareholders does not include home telephone numbers, fraudsters typically obtain these from lists available over the Internet.
More information on share scams and how to protect yourself from them are available from the UK’s Consumer Financial Education Body, established by the Financial Services Authority.