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Government launches investigation into Comet's collapse

Final stores close today.

The government has launched an investigation into Comet's collapse after allegations that OpCapita and backers had charged Comet £12.8m for financing and "monitoring" fees, despite the company's spiralling losses.

Here's the Telegraph:

The administrators report for Comet shows that Hailey Acquistions Limited (HAL), the vehicle OpCapita used to buy the retailer, received £11.5m in interest and arrangement payments while OpCapita and another Hailey vehicle collected £1.3m for “quarterly monitoring fees”.

There is anger among the retailer’s employees at OpCapita and its founder Henry Jackson for allowing the business to fail just months after the private investment firm bought Comet for £2 and received a £50m dowry from previous owner Kesa.

Comet's final 49 shops are to close today, after the store went into administration last month.

The company's collapse has been costly: the government lost £49.4m in unpaid tax and redundancy payments, and according to Deloitte unsecured creditors will recover less than 1 per cent of the money they are owed.