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Tuesday, 14 September 2021 20:07

SchoolsCompany – were its Directors suitable to run an Academy Trust?

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This article is a follow-up to my previous Government  At Last Takes Action against SchoolsCompany (Indirectly) on the main news page.

The above headline is based on the hypothetical assumption that the founder of the academy Trust SchoolsCompany, Elias Achilleos, along with Heinrich Zimmerman, one of the Directors, appear to have vanished after running a number of companies across the world, most of which apart from SchoolsCompany Limited have now closed down, and most never appear to have operated. I make no comment on the other founding Directors. If any of my assumptions or conclusions are incorrect, then I am of course happy to change or if necessary withdraw the article.


One can only speculate how the track record below persuaded the government that SchoolsCompany Limited, set up in 2011, was a suitable organisation to run an Academy Trust, take responsibility for its finances, and provide its support services. Its founding CEO ran at least three Limited Companies between 2006-2011, all of which were dissolved before the appointment. One was engaged in unspecified business activities (which was wound up by application of its main creditor – HM Government!), one an entertainment company, the third offering administrative and support service activities, with no evidence of any educational background at this stage.  

I have previously featured the non-existent Royal Academy for Construction and Fabrication in Nigeria, projected to ‘develop a workforce that is skilful and intellectually equipped for the 21st century construction and fabrication’. Schools Week reported on a description of SchoolsCompany by William FranklinCEO of China Investors Club, as ‘the UK’s leading special needs education specialist consultancy’ who were looking for partners to ‘provide capital and distribution capability in China with a commitment to run a school and develop a range of kindergartens, as well as an undertaking to support the 2022 Winter Olympics in Hebei province’. Janet Downs reports on Explico International Holdings registered in South Africa, founded 2019, now being deregistered for not producing an Annual Return, and run by Messrs Achilleos and Zimmerman.
Companies House also provides us with the following companies set up by Achilleos: ESA Investments (UK) Limited (2006 – 2008, dissolved, Nature of business, Administrative and support service activities);  Lix Entertainment Ltd (2006 – 2008, dissolved via voluntary strike-off);  E1 Consulting Ltd (2007 – 2011 when it was wound up at the request of its creditors (HM Revenue & Customs), unspecified business activities).

SchoolsCompany Limited, set up in 2011 is still running with Mr Achilleos as its only Director and CEO. Its most recent accounts were signed by him in March 2021, so the government does presumably have contact details for him at that point.

Then, more recently, during the time that SchoolsCompany Trust was operational: Schools Company UK Holdings Ltd (2017-2019, voluntary strike off, educational support services – the big money spinner); International Teacher Training College Ltd (2017-2018, dissolved, First-degree and Post-graduate levels higher education); Construction Academy Of Uk Limited (2017 – 2018, voluntary strike off, Technical and vocational secondary education, and Post-secondary non-tertiary education); Bureau For International Education Limited (2017-2018, voluntary strike off, pre-primary, primary and general secondary education); Nexdefence Global Limited (with Zimmerman 2017-2018, dissolved, voluntary strike off, Information technology consultancy); Premier Sports Academy Limited (2017-2018, dissolved, voluntary strike off, sports activities). Mr Achilleos was also a Director of Adaptations To Buildings And Living Environments Limited, around 2006-2008 (no further information known of this inactive company).

Clearly, any information to balance this record would be welcome to help understand the government’s decision to award SchoolsCompany Trust to its Directors in the first place.
Last modified on Sunday, 26 September 2021 18:58

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