The UK’s best-known TV property show presenter Kevin McCloud is facing questions over the potential collapse of an eco-building company he set up in 2007.
McCloud established Happiness Architecture Beauty (HAB) to construct green housing developments and to date, approximately 650 individual private investors have ploughed in at least £4.3 million during two cash raises, as well as money pumped in by McCloud.
This included a record-breaking £1.9 million raise via a crowdfunding website in 2013 and a further £2.4 million raised two years ago via a ‘mini-bond’ scheme.
During the latest cash call, McCloud urged people to “join our community of like-minded investors” promising returns of between 5% and 9% per annum.
INVESTORS MAY LOSE UP TO 97%
But the company backed by the long-standing presenter of Channel 4 show Grand Designs says investors may lose up to 97% of their money – and that if even if the business can continue, they are unlikely to see any returns until 2024.
“I stand shoulder to shoulder with those who have lost money. I will do everything in my power to improve the situation,” McCloud told The Guardian over the weekend.
“I placed my faith in past management. Business is tough and, even if you have a skilled team and strong backing, other circumstances can pull the rug from under you.”
HAB has built homes for sale and rent in five locations including recently-completed sites near Oxford, a completed site near Swindon and a fourth near Winchester in Hampshire.
Its fifth site, within the Southmead area of Bristol, has yet to be released but is expected to include over 100 units including houses and apartments.