SEBASTIAN SHAKESPEARE: Robert Tchenguiz risks £27m gamble on spreadbet
The flamboyant tycoon Robert Tchenguiz lives in a grandiose, four-storey, £20 million house close to the Royal Albert Hall — and famously shares it with both his wife and mistress.
But I can disclose that he was prepared to risk forfeiting a property worth several million more when the stock market crashed earlier this year.
Details of Tchenguiz’s audacious gamble are revealed in a document which he’s just submitted to the High Court in his battle against a City firm, CMC Spreadbet, which has sued him for £1.13 million, plus interest.
Tchenguiz, 59, who shares the fourth floor of his mansion with 29-year-old Julia Dybowska, while his estranged wife Heather Bird, 50, sleeps three floors below, has retaliated with characteristic vigour.
He’s issued a counterclaim against CMC for the same amount, accusing it of making a ‘false assurance’ and acting in an ‘irrational, arbitrary and capricious manner’.
The war of words results from when the stock market collapsed in March — with grievous consequences for Tchenguiz, who had borrowed from six City companies including CMC, so as to invest in the transport giant FirstGroup.
Tchenguiz’s shareholding had been worth up to £100 million, but then the virus struck — and the company’s share price collapsed.
This prompted him to make a further gamble on March 16 — by emailing CMC ‘details of a substantial leasehold property [valued at] £27 million’, which he offered ‘as security for any potential losses’.
Details of Tchenguiz’s audacious gamble are revealed in a document which he’s just submitted to the High Court in his battle against a City firm, CMC Spreadbet, which has sued him for £1.13 million, plus interest. Pictured: Tchenguiz and his wife Lisa
But according to Tchenguiz’s counterclaim, CMC declined to give ‘any, or any proper, consideration’ to this offer.
Tchenguiz — who has a yacht, a Ferrari F40 and two Range Rovers — has retained the Queen’s solicitors, Farrer & Co.
Two years ago, a judge ordered him to pay £9 million in legal fees after he abandoned a claim against City hot-shots Grant Thornton.
In a separate High Court action, another judge declared that Tchenguiz was ‘not a good witness’ and was prepared ‘to say whatever he thought would assist [his] case’.
Exterior shots of British entrepreneur, Robert Tchenguiz’s house in London, England
Dame Judi Dench, who once had a joke tattoo applied to her bottom which she flashed during a lunch, has been asked to encourage over-90s to enter the Grow Old Disgracefully art competition for charity.
It is open to the nation’s 600,000 nonagenarians to produce a piece under the theme Happy Times and she will be a judge. Dame Judi, 85, says: ‘We’ve all wanted to find creative outlets to bring some fun to life in lockdown.’ Hope there aren’t too many nude paintings . . .
Nice to sit here, to sit here nice
He used to urge us to ‘ke-e-e-p dancing’, but late Strictly host Sir Bruce Forsyth did sit down occasionally. And to prove it, Wentworth Golf Club in Surrey, where he was an enthusiastic member, has dedicated a bench to his memory.
To mark the third anniversary of Brucie’s death yesterday, his widow, Wilnelia, shared a picture of the plaque, which alludes to another of his famous catchphrases, from The Generation Game.
It reads: ‘Nice to sit here, to sit here nice.’
To mark the third anniversary of Brucie’s death yesterday, his widow, Wilnelia, shared a picture of the plaque, which alludes to another of his famous catchphrases, from The Generation Game
Wilnelia Merced and Bruce Forsyth ‘Strictly Bruce’ book launch at Fortnum and Mason, London, Britain, 24 September, 2015
Wilnelia (pictured) says: ‘The bench is next to the halfway hut where he loved nothing more than a sausage sandwich and a cup of tea to break up his round of golf.’
The former Miss World adds: ‘My darling Bruce, especially today, you are loved, you are missed, you are remembered.’
Day Pet Clark rejected Elvis
Does Petula Clark regret rejecting amorous advances from Elvis Presley when she, along with Karen Carpenter, visited the King in his dressing room after a Las Vegas concert?
‘He was gorgeous, and charming, quite flirtatious,’ the Downtown singer recalls.
‘I think he fancied both of us. I rescued Karen from him, and I rescued myself, I suppose. It seemed like the right thing to do, to get out of his dressing room.’ Petula is no prude. She recently admitted she no longer lives with Claude Wolff, her French husband of 59 years, after finding love with a new boyfriend. Vive l’amour.
There’s a new model Hurley
He bears a striking resemblance to his mother, actress Elizabeth Hurley, owing to his lustrous brunette locks, chiselled features and natural pout.
Now Damian, whose father was the late American businessman Steve Bing, has caught the eye of one of the world’s top model agencies.
The 18-year-old has been signed by IMG Models, whose famous faces include Kate Moss as well as the ubiquitous catwalk stars Gigi and Bella Hadid.
Damian Hurley bears a striking resemblance to his mother, actress Elizabeth Hurley, owing to his lustrous brunette locks, chiselled features and natural pout
‘I’m incredibly excited,’ gushes Damian, who starred in the Pat McGrath make-up campaign last year. ‘To become part of such a wonderful family is truly fantastic. I can’t wait to see what the future brings.’
Rusedskis are hoping to bag a planning win
Once Britain’s No 1, Greg Rusedski could blast opponents off the court with his 149 mph serve. But the retired ace’s wife, Lucy, is trying a more painstaking approach towards objectors to her plans for a part time ‘wellness retreat’ at the couple’s idyllic Grade II-listed West Sussex farmhouse.
After a neighbour argued that Lucy’s ‘commercial business’ would cause ‘extra traffic and noise’, imperilling children on a ‘very narrow’ road, the planning officer visited — and concluded that the Rusedskis’ patch is notable for its ‘sense of tranquillity’.
Lucy has replied, noting the visit was made during lockdown. ‘The situation is currently extraordinary,’ she says, and prevents her stating her case in person.
Clients will enjoy activities such as yoga and the bean bag game: ‘the group have to keep six bags in the air’. With Greg in the umpire’s chair?
How Ellie builds her Power . . .
Ellie Goulding can boast of a string of hits and having performed at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding reception. But it seems she is most proud of her muscles.
Ellie Goulding can boast of a string of hits and having performed at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding reception. But it seems she is most proud of her muscles
Beaming with pride as she flexes her bulging biceps, Ellie shares this selfie. ‘There aren’t many muscular women in popular culture,’ claims the star, 33, who is married to Eton-educated art dealer Caspar Jopling and whose recent hits include Power.
‘To me, it isn’t scary to be strong. In fact, anyone who has met me knows I am the most pathetically shy and self-deprecating person.’
Big news from me, announces Tom Bradby, ITV News At Ten anchor and close friend of the royals.
Has Tom snared another Meghan scoop?
Not exactly. ‘Double Agent [Bradby’s latest spy thriller] will be 99p on Kindle tomorrow for one day only. Don’t miss it!’ One hopes Bradby isn’t selling his literary skills short.
Perhaps it’s a cut-price ploy to knock the Prince Harry and Meghan hagiography Finding Freedom off the top of the bestsellers’ list?
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