Set up just two years ago, it sold asset investment opportunities to members of the public – mostly by cold-calls but also via its website.
Commission ranging between 27.5% and 40% was paid to Asset Backed by the issuers of the bonds, which was deducted from the customers’ investments.
The Insolvency Service launched an investigation after it received complains about the company’s activities.
It discovered that the firm was not, and never had been, regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
In November 2018, the company vacated its office on Threadneedle Street in London without informing its landlord, but continued to market itself as being based there – a stone’s throw from the Bank of England.
Although the company failed to provide its books and records, investigators examined Asset Backed’s bank statements and discovered that income via commission received on the bonds amounted to £260,000 ($328,850, €294,751).
As a result, investigators have suggested that the company introduced unregulated investments to people in the region of £650,000 to £940,000.
Helen Cosgrove, chief investigator at the Insolvency Service, said: “Asset Backed Management traded in wilful breach of FCA regulations that exist to protect investors. Many members of the public have been impacted by their actions.”
She added that “this behaviour will not be tolerated”.