Time Computers denies tales of woe

Rumours of financial troubles at Time Computers are just the work of a 'disgruntled employee', according to the firm's parent company

An email claiming to detail a multitude of ills at Time Computers was dismissed by a company spokesman on Thursday as "a malicious mix of fact and fiction" and probably the work of a "disgruntled employee".

The message, which was circulated within the company on Wednesday, listed a series of alleged problems at Time Computers, including the allegation that the company had defaulted on a loan from HSBC, resulting in shop and head office staff being paid late two months in a row.

Speaking on behalf of the company, Richard Harris, head of human resources at Granville Technology Group, Time's parent company, admitted there had been some issues with the bank but insisted that employees had been kept informed of the issues at every stage.

He said he had read the email and was working to discover who had sent it around the company.

Harris also admitted that one of the directors of Time, Dr Tariq Mohammad, had left the company. The email claimed that four directors, including Dr Mohammed, had left.

Harris also "formally denied" another rumour that The Computer Shop is going to be bought by a company called Andy Clark and Associates.

Granville Technology trades under four main brands — The Computer Shop, Time Computers, Tiny Computers and Time Education.

Asked about the claim in the email that all of the company’s tech support had been transferred to India, Harris said this was not true and would be news "to the 145 people here". Harris added that after-hours tech support was handled in India, but a call put through to the Time help desk at 1615 BST was taken by an operator in Bangalore.

When asked about speculation that HP, one of Time's major suppliers, is worried about payment and refusing to supply computers, Mr Harris said; "That's not my area, I would not know about that."

Mr Harris reiterated that the email was the work of a malicious employee and that he and others at the group were "working very hard" to deal with the consequences.