20 September 2017
Visit http://response.ncr.com

Bowie, Bentleys and Cantonese: Powa failure fallout rumbles on

09 March 2016  |  9096 views  |  1 dan wagner

The fallout from Powa Technologies' collapse continues, as details of over-hyped deals, Wikipedia shenanigans, comedy videos and David Bowie tributes paint a picture of a company in turmoil, led by a David Brent-esque CEO.

Despite once boasting it was worth $2.7 billion, payments firm Powa went into administration last month. After failing to pay suppliers and staff for months, Deloitte was finally called in, with 72 people losing their jobs.

In the aftermath, a picture has emerged of a dysfunctional environment at the company, led by serial entrepreneur Dan Wagner. In a LinkedIn post Steven Prowse, who spent three months as the firm's acting CFO, says Wagner is "just a salesman obsessed with image - mainly his own".

Prowse even claims that Wagner parked his Bentley in a disabled spot, using a sticker belonging to a parent.

And the ex-CFO has also shared an email purporting to show Wagner dressed up as David Bowie. The email is dated 12 January, in the midst of Powa's financial crisis, when many staff were not getting paid.

Wagner's office clown demeanor is also in evidence in a video sent to staff at the end of last year in which he mugs for the camera and attempts to talk simplified Cantonese.

The Chinese patter is in celebration of Powa's deal with the country's UnionPay card scheme. However, digging by the Financial Times shows that Powa actually only signed a joint venture deal with a small Guangzhou-based mobile payments company called CN2Pay.

China UnionPay sent a cease-and-desist order via law firm King & Wood Mallesons "asking for evidence of a relationship between China UnionPay or the subsidiary UnionPay Network Payment and Powa, which they had not been able to find. If they couldn’t provide that evidence, the letter asked them to, y’know, cut it out," says the FT.

Overhyping deals appears to be a pattern - according to Business Insider most of the 1200 clients Powa once claimed to have signed up to its PowaTag payments app had not inked a contract, merely "expressed interest".

Business Insider has also discovered that Wagner's Wikipedia page has been edited in recent days to downplay Powa's collapse. Since 2009, Wikipedia user Techtrek has only edited one page - Wagner's, which the mysterious fan has amended around 100 times.


Comments: (1)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member | 10 March, 2016, 11:38

It is much better than this...  

Insightful spoof twitter account from  an apparently well informed insider check out @danwagnerpowa



Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 thumb ups! (Log in to thumb up)
Comment on this story (membership required)

Finextra news in your inbox

For Finextra's free daily newsletter, breaking news flashes and weekly jobs board: sign up now

Related stories

Administrators sell failed Powa units

Administrators sell failed Powa units

03 March 2016  |  5892 views  |  0 comments | 3 tweets | 2 linkedin
Powa Technologies goes into administration - FT

Powa Technologies goes into administration - FT

19 February 2016  |  12871 views  |  14 comments | 26 tweets | 8 linkedin
Powa struggles to pay staff and suppliers

Powa struggles to pay staff and suppliers

17 February 2016  |  7264 views  |  1 comments | 9 tweets | 6 linkedin
Vodafone enlists Powa for QR-based top ups

Vodafone enlists Powa for QR-based top ups

03 August 2015  |  8061 views  |  0 comments | 6 tweets | 7 linkedin
Powa buys MPayMe in $75m deal

Powa buys MPayMe in $75m deal

12 June 2014  |  7762 views  |  1 comments | 5 tweets | 7 linkedin
Powa bids to revolutionise commerce

Powa bids to revolutionise commerce

04 March 2014  |  6196 views  |  4 comments | 2 tweets | 3 linkedin
Powa plans 250 UK jobs after $76m funding round

Powa plans 250 UK jobs after $76m funding round

21 August 2013  |  6721 views  |  0 comments | 3 tweets

Related blogs

Create a blog about this story (membership required)
visit www.sibos.comvisit www.capgemini.comvisit www.temenos.com

Top topics

Most viewed Most shared
JPMorgan Chase chief says he would fire traders dealing in bitcoin for stupidityJPMorgan Chase chief says he would fire tr...
10543 views comments | 16 tweets | 29 linkedin
Equifax hack: Visa and Mastercard flag 200k compromised credit cardsEquifax hack: Visa and Mastercard flag 200...
10083 views comments | 6 tweets | 17 linkedin
HSBC switches on selfie payments in ChinaHSBC switches on selfie payments in China
9462 views comments | 21 tweets | 39 linkedin
Dutch bank sentences teenage DDoS culprit to community serviceDutch bank sentences teenage DDoS culprit...
9000 views comments | 6 tweets | 3 linkedin
UAE banks pool cyber security dataUAE banks pool cyber security data
7427 views comments | 5 tweets | 4 linkedin

Featured job

A minimum of £200K (not a limiting factor)

Find your next job