Ian Johnson's Businesses

Since his arrival in the UK in 2001, Ian Johnson has been involved with 26 companies in the UK, Luxembourg and Australia as a director / owner (view all his UK directorships here).

Whilst he would claim that he is a successful businessman, statistics paint a different picture about Mr Johnson's "successes" for over 11 years of being in the UK:

  • 18 past appointments (69%), 8 current (31%) (including Luminar International companies in Luxembourg)
  • 13 companies were dissolved after just over 2 years of operation from the date of incorporation - that is half of all the companies he has been involved with
  • 10 companies (38%) never even filed accounts
  • Average time with any one company: 2.6 years

Today he owns and is a director of 6 UK companies, and at least 2 overseas companies registered in Luxembourg. Anyone, who is considering doing business with Ian Johnson, should ask themselves whether the above statistics demonstrate that Mr Johnson is a successful businessman. They should also consider that if Ian Johnson is a valid businessman, then why he has his latest companies in Luxembourg. The simple reason for this is that such offshore companies based in Luxembourg are very difficult to take to court and try to get the money back from. Mr Johnson might argue it is for tax reasons – we know what the real reason is! But even if you go for the “tax argument” then consider if you want to do business with someone who sets up offshore companies to get around UK tax requirements!

If you know of any other companies that Ian David Johnson owns(ed) or is/was a director of anywhere in the world, please let us know. You can email us details anonymously at IanJohnsonScams@hotmail.com or complete a Contact Us form.

Here is a list of all known companies:

Current companies:

Business Thinking Systems Limited (BTS)

Company No.: 05806714
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR (previously: The Dell, 4 Ingleby Paddocks, Enslow, Kidlington, Oxfordshire, OX5 3ET)

This is a franchised operation providing general business advice to SMEs. Business Thinking Systems is the franchisor with whom franchisees have a contractual relationship. It collects up-front Licence Fees and monthly Management Service Fees from franchisees.

The franchisor collects client fees directly through another company, The Infinite Group (UK) Ltd (and The Infinite Group Australia Pty Ltd in Australia), and then pays these via BTS to franchisees.

Whilst monthly royalty fees are set at GBP 1,500 (AUD 1,500) or 10% of franchisees' earnings (whichever is greater), licence fees vary.

To entice potential franchisees to join, Ian Johnson allows them to offset their fees against future earnings. The sinister fact is the majority of franchisees fail to take on enough clients to even cover their franchise fees. This "loan" scheme therefore lands them in substantial debt to the franchisor with little or no income for themselves.

Find out more about Business Thinking Systems Ltd, its financial performance, past and present owners and officers as well as what others say about this company on www.duedil.com.

The Infinite Group (UK) Ltd

Website: www.the-infinite-group.com

UK Company No.: 06723006
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR (previously: The Dell, 4 Ingleby Paddocks, Enslow, Kidlington, Oxfordshire, OX5 3ET)

This is a customer-facing operation. Franchisees of Business Thinking System Ltd operate through The Infinite Group companies as "partners" offering general business advice to SMEs. The Infinite Group collects client payments on behalf of its franchisees. Client fees are then paid to franchisees, less their monthly management service fees, through Business Thinking Systems.

This set up means that, technically, franchisees do not "own" their clients; all clients "belong" to The Infinite Group.

The franchisor advises franchisees that they can charge a minimum of GBP 1,500 per session (up to 4 working hours). This is an equivalent daily rate of top consultants working with multi-national corporations. The reality is very different, however, and franchisees charge whatever they can get away with, sometimes as little as GBP 350.

Quality of The Infinite Group's advisers (franchisees) is variable, with many lacking commercial experience or experience in running a business. This results in high customer attrition and reputational damage.

The company's structure, methods and materials closely resemble - and in many instances are identical to - those of Action Coach and other advisory organisations.

Find out more about The Infinite Group (UK) Ltd, its financial performance, past and present owners and officers as well as what others say about this company on www.duedil.com.

Luminar Administration Limited (in the UK), Luminar International S.àr.l. and Luminar International Holdings S.àr.l. (in Luxembourg)

UK Company No.: 07057304
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR

Luxembourg Company No's: B154087 & B145676
Registered address: 70, Route d'Esch, L - 1470, Luxembourg

Luminar International is a franchised operation that was launched in October 2009 with Luminar Administration which was in July 2010 transferred to Luminar International companies registered in Luxembourg. Its stated activity is the acquisition of companies with EBITDA of over GBP 500 thousand, although as at March 2013 not a single acquisition has been concluded by the company.

At its peak, there were 14 franchisees in the UK, Spain, Australia and USA; now there are just 2.

Up-front licence fees vary from GBP/USD/AUD 50,000 to GBP/USD/AUD 150,000 and monthly royalty fees are GBP/USD/AUD 3,000. Luminar franchisees are enticed to join and pay these substantial fees with the promise of equity in acquired businesses.

Franchisees endeavour to acquire businesses from retiring vendors in partnership with second-tier management, a so-called “Management Involved Buy Out”. Acquired businesses would be jointly owned by Luminar International Holdings S.àr.l. (a separate holding company), the franchisee and the management team.

Management teams who wish to participate in the acquisition are obliged to pay a non-refundable, up-front commitment fee of GBP 15,000-20,000. In addition, Luminar has tried to insist that vendors pay an additional GBP 15,000 to produce a business plan, but with limited success. Luminar, however, does not put any money in the deal.

Luminar claims to have a unique acquisition model, but no such model exists. This leads to the inevitable failure of each acquisition attempt and loss of commitment fees.

In the absence of any revenue from their Luminar activities, franchisees eventually run out of money to pay their fees and their agreements are terminated by the franchisor. Only 2 remain and not a single deal has been concluded.

Founders of Luminar businesses are Ian David Johnson and James Russell Lowrie

Infinicorp Limited

Company No.: 06953409
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR

Infinicorp was set up as franchise to replicate The Infinite Group's operation, offering general business advice and consultancy services but targeting corporate businesses. Since its launch in 2009, there have been no franchisees and limited business activity.

BZL Administration Ltd

Company No.: 06961227
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR

BZL Administration Ltd is believed to be the current owner of a licensed network called BizLinx (previously Bizlinx UK & Ireland Ltd, which was dissolved because of near-bankruptcy), whose activity is business networking for SMEs.

Licensees own territories, in which they endeavour to build networking groups which meet over lunch. Membership in BizLinx is GBP 1,500 per year with further meeting fees of a minimum of £600 per annum to cover lunch costs.

There is little substance or support available to Licensees, leading to high membership attrition. Whilst originally there were BizLinx groups in Kent, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Scotland, today this networking organisation operates a very small number of groups in Oxford and the surrounding area.

The original BizLinx idea (it used to be called BizLinx International) was developed in Australia by Ben Fewtrell, with Don Graham as an investor, who agreed for Mr Johnson to expand the business into the UK. It is understood that whilst Mr Johnson brought BizLinx to the UK, to date this has not been linked to the original Australian operation. It is believed therefore that the UK operation is an unauthorised replica of the Australian business with no royalties paid to Australia to date.

Purchasing Partnership (UK) Limited

Company No.: 05834912
Registered address: Brunel House, Volunteer Way, Faringdon, Oxfordshire, SN7 7YR (previously: The Dell, 4 Ingleby Paddocks, Enslow, Kidlington, Oxfordshire, OX5 3ET)

Purchasing Partnership is a franchised operation, whose main activity is procurement and supplier management for businesses. Ian Johnson is currently a co-owner and a director of this company, although he is not involved in any day-to-day activities. There currently have no known franchisees and the business is insolvent.

Previous companies:

Mr Johnson was previously involved with the following companies:

The Internet Accounting College Ltd

Action International Business Coaching Ltd

Action International London Ltd

Global Telemarketing Solutions Ltd

Pink Portfolio Investments Ltd

Pink Portfolio Management Ltd

Learn2account Ltd

Icon Accounting Solutions Ltd

Orange Genie Cover Ltd

Genie Management Group Ltd

Genie Services Ltd

Genie Payroll Ltd

Orange Genie Admin Ltd

Orange Genie Business Services Ltd

Orange Genie Holdings Ltd

Prodat Services Ltd

Wes Tech (UK) Ltd

Infinity Franchising Ltd