Details emerged this week about the demise of Soho post facility Laughing Buddha that was put
Details emerged this week about the demise of Soho post facility Laughing Buddha that was put into liquidation two months ago.Based in Little Portland Street, London the firm was set up two years ago by by well-known industry figure Andrew Lee and freelance editor Justin Annandale, with backing from German investor Nico Demitriov.However, after a rocky two years, which included the departure of shareholder Annandale last July - after differences of opinion on how the company should be run - and the removal of Lee by shareholders earlier this year, administrators were finally brought in at the end of April. Around five jobs went as the business folded, although at its peak, the firm employed around eight people.Broadcast has also learnt that the company's shareholders are seeking an investigation into the firm's debts, which include money owing to the Inland Revenue and former staff.One source said: 'It is the classic case of overheads exceeding income.' Another, who is owed 'several thousand pounds', said the problems arose because the firm had no management, administration or promotional skills.'There wasn't even a ratecard,' the source said. 'With that kit, turnover should have been around £80,000 per month and break even about £40,000.So where the money went, who knows?'Demetriov has also lost money as he is the guarantor for the firm's £500,000-worth of equipment, which includes an Editbox, two Avid Media Composers and an Avid offline. However, although buyers are being sought for the kit, any proceeds will be used to pay creditors rather than Demitriov who is understood to be paying off the remaining £200,000.Lee was the original founder of post-production facility TSI and also founded 8811/The Mouse & Keyboard, which have been put into liquidation twice - first under Lee's ownership and more recently under Applied Media Group (AMG) ownership (Broadcast, 23.11.01).