“Out Of Time” Barclays Backed ABCUL Bid Wins!
Published by Graham Tomlin for Credit Union Solutions Ltd in Central Government and also in Education, Health, Housing, Local Government, Universal Credit
Yesterday Mark Lyonette from ABCUL announced that their bid to the DWP’s Credit Union Expansion Programme had been the only successful bid scooping all of the £35M of Government funding.
Controversially the ABCUL bid should have been ruled out as it was outside of the “strict” deadline set by the DWP whereas the other competing bids were all in on time.
A key question remains as to how much influence Barclays will have in ABCUL’s Cornerstone back office for their £300k investment in ABCUL’s bid. Already several credit unions have complained about a lack of representation on the Cornerstone board for participating credit unions.
This leaves Citysave Credit Union and their partner TATA and Kesho and their partner Dot Community left to consider how they can protest at the actions of DWP Officers. At the meeting in Aston Villa Football Club in 2012 where the DWP outlined their expansion programme attendees were left in no doubt that late submissions would not be considered yet these rules were set aside in ABCUL’s favour and to the detriment of the other bidders. It is understood that ABCUL’s bid was funded by £300K from the trade association’s coffers and a matched £300k from Barclays Bank.
There is a sense that the Government is becoming far too influential in the operational side of the credit union movement and that quite soon there will be a purge of small credit unions that will see many close down or become forced to amalgamate. This is in sharp contrast to their hands off attitude to Pay Day Lenders and High Street Banks who continue to flout the law with impunity.
I wonder what the attitude of the Government will be when the extradition orders from the USA begin to hit the Libor fixing crook’s door mats?
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