Cashbox settles Hanco litigation

Cashbox settles Hanco litigation

UK independent ATM operator Cashbox has agreed to pay £1.8m to settle a litigation brought by Hanco, the cash machine vendor owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

Cashbox was set up in September 2003 by Carl Thomas - a former sales director at ATM firm Hanco which was acquired by RBS in 2004 - and his brother Matt. The firm floated on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) last year. Carl Thomas was sacked in March this year following an investigation into his share dealings in the wake of a bid approach for the company. He was replaced by Ciaran Morton.

Hanco originally launched proceedings against Cashbox and Carl Thomas three years ago. It was reported that Hanco was pursuing Cashbox for £2m in damages following claims that Thomas "diverted" a contract from Hanco to Cashbox, namely a deal for the installation of ATMs with Thresher Group.

A summary judgment in Hanco's favour was handed down by the Masters' Chancery Division last November. Cashbox was later granted permission to appeal against the decision that it had knowingly received a document containing Hanco's trading terms and conditions. The hearing was adjourned on 31 July.

In today's statement Cashbox says it has reached agreement on a "full and final settlement" and will pay Hanco £1.8m, together with interest accruing daily if payment is deferred.

Cashbox has the option of deferring payment up to two years on the basis that interest will accrue on the settlement sum at five per cent per annum for the first year and at 20% per annum thereafter.

Commenting on the settlement John Maples, Cashbox chairman, says: "I am pleased that both sides have been able to reach agreement and bring this matter to a close. The company is currently at a key stage of its growth and one that demands the full attention of its senior management."

"The management team is now able to fully concentrate on the rapid deployment of ATMs across our estate and drive this business forwards towards profitability," adds Maples.

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