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skybond

Telescope Planet ceases trading

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this can only be good news for FLO aswell, most newbies when searching for a telescope site on google will find telescope planet first, with them out the fram a large chunk of the business will go to FLO, so if i were them i would start ordering more stock.

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This is my first post and I apologise for having to make it in this way. But I found this thread this morning and am a little bit 'peeved' to say the least, not with the contributors to this thread - I hasten to add, but with TP. I also paid for equipment, approx. £450 worth, and TP didn't fulfil the order. When I cancelled they said they'd refunded the money but that didn't happen either, so I issued a Small Claim against them about 10 days ago. Now, thanks to you guys, I find they've ceased trading.

So, I've done some digging this morning. I've checked Companies House records for a Limited Company called 'Telescope Planet' - and there is no record - which suggests that they are not Ltd. Then I checked the 'Whois' records for the owner of the website address and that is a webhosting service - which again suggests that it is not owned by a Ltd company. I have checked with the Insolvency Service and there is no record of TP filing for Administration. They suggest it is possible that the owner may simply have locked the doors and walked away. In which case, if the company is not Ltd and is privately owned, our claims are actually against that owner. I believe I know that name - but can anyone confirm??

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I believe if it was run as a "Sole trader" or "partnership" then the individual(s) involved are liable.

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Here's TP's Contact Page, cached on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

Might be an idea searching Companies House by "company officer" rather than by a "trading name".

HTH :D

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They could be 'trading as' is they company name may be something else. For instance I can buy a registered company name called TKX Ltd and then simply trade as whatever name is cool. It has to be on the stationary though so I would have to have TKX Ltd trading as Best Value Telescopes.

Same applies to a sole trader - at least as far as I know.

Course they could have a limited company registered but file no accounts and have it as a dormant company. For instance Bert Smith owns TKX Limited which is simply a dormant company (he would probably need a registered company to use Visa/Mastercard). Then he sets up a business called 'Telescope Wonder Store' but files accounts as a sole trader in the name of Bert Smith and does his tax return in that name as well. The company just files accounts yearly with £1 of share capital and thats all perfectly legal as theres no attempt to deceive in either action. Thus a search on the Company House register for 'Telescope Wonder Store' wont show a thing.

In a sole trader collapse the trader is liable for losses but if they are smart they will have the ownership of the company either off shore or in the name of a relative who has no assets to seize. Its hellish difficult if a sole trader takes a dive to get any money. To be honest its next to impossible if a Ltd company takes a dive either because usually they have no assets.

A few years back one of the largest online card processors took a dive (it cost me over £15k at the time in unpaid bills and general losses) they were a HUGE organisation. It took over 5 years for winding up and the company assets were almost nil - with thousands of creditors owed between £1000 and £100,000 the company assets were about £10,000 so you can imagine what happened.

In short of TP have in fact taken a dive I would suggest the chances of getting the cash back (unless the card company refunds) is almost zero.

Edited by Astro_Baby

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I now have the personal address of the owner of Telescope Planet and am making a claim against him personally.

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They could be 'trading as' is they company name may be something else. For instance I can buy a registered company name called TKX Ltd and then simply trade as whatever name is cool. It has to be on the stationary though so I would have to have TKX Ltd trading as Best Value Telescopes.

Same applies to a sole trader - at least as far as I know.

Course they could have a limited company registered but file no accounts and have it as a dormant company. For instance Bert Smith owns TKX Limited which is simply a dormant company (he would probably need a registered company to use Visa/Mastercard). Then he sets up a business called 'Telescope Wonder Store' but files accounts as a sole trader in the name of Bert Smith and does his tax return in that name as well. The company just files accounts yearly with £1 of share capital and thats all perfectly legal as theres no attempt to deceive in either action. Thus a search on the Company House register for 'Telescope Wonder Store' wont show a thing.

In short of TP have in fact taken a dive I would suggest the chances of getting the cash back (unless the card company refunds) is almost zero.

None of this makes the postulated 'TKX Ltd' company responsible for the debts but 'Bert Smith' would be.

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No - I know that - I was explaining why you may not find a listing on companies house for a company trading name.

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Orion Optics posted this on their Yahoo group.

John

***********************************************

Telescope Planet

Posted by: "orionoptics" john@orionoptics.co.uk orionoptics

Tue May 4, 2010 12:52 am (PDT)

We heard last week that Telescope Planet is no longer trading. If anyone has some product of ours on order from them, we will try and help out. Send us details or give us a call

Barry

******************************************

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A little more info: I've been receiving mail from Simon Heard, who I beleive to be the owner of Telescope Planet and these have been routed by way of a webmail server at www.bumblebeebargains.co.uk. Take a look at the site - the coincidence is quite eerie. He's ceased trading there also.

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Good for Orion Optics!

I wonder how much they (and other suppliers) are losing through kit shipped to customers via TP where TP has received payment from the customer but not paid the supplier?

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So, I've done some digging this morning. I've checked Companies House records for a Limited Company called 'Telescope Planet' - and there is no record - which suggests that they are not Ltd. Then I checked the 'Whois' records for the owner of the website address and that is a webhosting service - which again suggests that it is not owned by a Ltd company. I have checked with the Insolvency Service and there is no record of TP filing for Administration.

Hi,

Simon Heard is the proprietor of two companies supplying astronomy gear; Planet Optics Ltd and Skysurfer Ltd. Given the name and that Skysurfer is a relatively new company I would suggest that Planet Optics is the most likely business although Planet Optics was only registered in 2009 and hasn't filed any accounts.

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this can only be good news for FLO ...

I know where you are coming from but FLO is pretty-much TP's polar opposite. TP adopted the huge-advertising-maximum-turnover model whereas FLO doesn't advertise anywhere, other than here on SGL. FLO's business is built on the support of forums and word-of-mouth recommendations. It is the other retailers advertising in 'Sky @ Night' and 'Astronomy Now' who are best placed to take up the slack.

Anyhow, I wouldn't be surprised to see TP re-emerge in one form or another.

Steve

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I wonder how much money they blew by having a 2 page spread advert in both AN and S@N?

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I done a credit search on Telescope Planet today & have uploaded a copy below (sorry for the size but it needed to be quite big so it can be read)

There is no mention of them being bankrupt but it did say that they are quite a new company,registered on 01/11/09.

@ Admin.

If this is not allowed,please remove.

SH104657.jpg

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I agree that when ever a "Big Purchase" is made credit Card is always the safest way to do it.. also this included using t to provide the FULL funds for a paypal transaction dont use balance.

But i know exactly where Demon is coming from as i have a collection of those t-shirts only since I have "grown up" lol im 36 can i trust myslef with a CC.. almost LOL

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I done a credit search on Telescope Planet today & have uploaded a copy below (sorry for the size but it needed to be quite big so it can be read)

There is no mention of them being bankrupt but it did say that they are quite a new company,registered on 01/11/09.

Hi Tony - thanx for the credit check, however, TP have been around for a few years, (I think 5 or 6), and your check confirms that they moved to this address from the centre of Swansea on that date. It also confirms that they are not a Ltd. company and that Simon Heard is the owner.

In response to a previous post I do not expect them to appear again under another guise.

Edited by evitaerc

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Incidentally, and FYI - the fact that TP is not Ltd. and is/was run as a sole trader means that the proprietor is responsible for any debts. This means that those of us who are owed money , or goods, by TP have a claim against Mr Heard. You can do this on-line, through the small claims procedure at https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/csmco2/index.jsp this is a service provided by the Court Service in England and Wales. I can provide information as to where you need to serve the notice but it would be inappropriate to post that here. So contact me privately if you need the information, or haven't figured it out for yourself.

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They owe me for a Skywatcher 200P GOTO @£699 luckly payed with the plastic so should get the money back. Used a company called Opticstar for a Celeston C8 and had it within 3 days fantastic service and great people.

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I'm hearing rumours that Simon Heard is filing for bankruptcy, can anyone confirm this and does anyone know what happens to the debt that he has to all of us that have spent money with Telescope Planet and not received any goods.

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does anyone know what happens to the debt that he has to all of us that have spent money with Telescope Planet and not received any goods.

First call, Inland Revenue. Second call, receiver / administration charges. Third call, banks who have lent him money with his assets as security. Last in line, unsecured creditors i.e. everyone else.

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If anyone is trying to get hold of Simon Heard, why don't you get hold of him here on facebook -

Simon Heard | Facebook

or maybe give him a ring? as Snob Dog mentioned before in this thread, is trading on ebay under the name of 'flowerpet' -

CLASSY PINK HORSE BOX 3.5 TON PERFECT FOR ALL DRIVER on eBay (end time 18-May-10 23:08:30 BST)

Click the name 'flowerpet' on that page and you will see the snob dog logo!! and a handy phone number to call them on ANT: REMOVED NUMBER

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I need some advise! Ive no idea what to do now?

I used moneyclaim.gov.uk and paid my £25 to pursue simon heard for my money. I paid my £25 and the courts sent the claim to TP, the address I used was TP's business address. He's had his time to respond but Ive got nothing, the Moneyclaim site is down at the minute for service so I cant check until monday. The next step online is to enter judgement but is this going to go anywhere?? Should I have used his home address and if so can I change it?

Im really wondering what my chances of getting anything back are now, but I issued the claim before "Telescope Planet temporary have Ceased Trading until Further Notice" so does that count for anything?

Anyone have any ideas what I should do??

thanks everyone :)

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To come back to the business of whacking great 2 page ads in two magazines, you would be looking at around £2,500 per month, I would think. Maybe more. They would get a good discount off the standard card but it would be something like that.

Now that says a lot about the way you are doing business. You have big overheads just to cover the ads amd you MUST, therefore, keep seling like crazy. It is interesting that the most-praised retailers on this forum, who include FLO, Ian King and others do not operate in this way. A place like Telescope House is an importer so not in quite the same position. I have never bought anything from these mega-ad places and I rather think I will leave it that way.

I did once buy a camera from a Big Ad shop only to find they had gone bust, but I was offered refunds all round, by the plastic, the magazine and the travel insurance (for the replacement which was promptly stolen by - really - Mexican bandits!!)

Olly

Edited by ollypenrice

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