Kids Company trustees could be banned from serving as company directors

Camilla Turner
Alan Yentob - Paul Grover

Alan Yentob and other Kids Company trustees could be banned from serving as company directors following the charity’s collapse.

The charity shut down in 2015 amid allegations of financial mismanagement, and has faced a series of damaging allegations. 

The Government's Insolvency Service has reportedly written to lawyers acting for Kids Company's former board members to warn them that it is minded to pursue disqualification proceedings against them.

Camila Batmanghelidjh Credit:  Camilla Greenwell

If successful, disqualification proceedings can force board members to relinquish any directorships they hold. Yentob is listed at Companies House as a director of a television production business called I Am Curious, which he established last year. Richard Handover, a former boss of W H Smith, is another former trustee. 

Yentob, former chairman of trustees at the charity, stepped down as BBC creative director following allegations that he tried to influence its coverage of the charity's troubles. While defending his actions, he acknowledged the allegations were a serious distraction to the BBC. 

A damning report by MPs last year blamed an “extraordinary catalogue of failures of governance and control at every level” for Kids Company’s collapse last year. Ministers who were “captivated” by founder Camila Batmanghelidjh, charity bosses who “lavished” money on an exclusive group of children, “negligent” trustees and powerless regulators are all criticised.

MPs demanded “radical change" in regulation that would make see independent watchdogs given legal powers to intervene in similar circumstances.

The Insolvency Service, which has powers to seek bans on directorships for individuals of up to 15 years, said: “Our investigation into the circumstances surrounding the collapse of Keeping Kids Company and the conduct of the directors is ongoing. It is not appropriate to comment further at this time.”

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