This article is must reading for chess promoters. Since it is lengthy, I will attempt to summarize it.
The article states: "When it was launched in the Spring of 2000 BGN attracted £3 million in investment, but within weeks more than £500,000 had been siphoned out of the company."
BGN or Brain Games Network is a company formed by Raymond Keene to sponsor the Kasparov vs. Kramnik World Chess Championship match and also the Kramnik vs. Computer Chess Match.
(I am sure that I do not have that exactly right, but that is the general gist of it.)
Levy says that £510,000 or approximately $750,000 was siphoned out of the company almost as soon as the share offering was completed. In essence, three empty corporations and two websites owned by Keene, www.brainrating.com and www.brainranking.com, were sold to BGN for that amount.
Raymond Keene and the London based company Brain Games Network plc (BGN) are the subject of fraud allegations made in an article entitled "Cheque Mates", published in the current issue of the magazine Private Eye (Number 1044: Dec 28th-Jan 10th, page 27). The amounts in question total £510,000 (approximately $750,000), in addition to which the "Eye" discusses some fees totaling a further £201,000.
I am not convinced that this constitutes fraud. What interests me is that a newly formed corporation is able to go public and raise £3,000,000 to sponsor a chess match.
What about my web site? I get more than 50,000 hits per day, everybody reads it, and so far nobody has offered me £510,000 for it. Who knows, I might even be willing to let it go for that price.
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