CENTRAL to Craig Whyte’s business empire over many years have been a number of investment companies that specialise in lending finance to other companies.
He is reported to have taken an interest in financial matters from a young age and was already buying and selling shares before he left school. He set up his first firm, a plant-hire company, at the age of 19 – following in the footsteps of his father – but the firm later dissolved.
This did not dissuade him, however and he quickly set up a range of companies in fields including property, communications and security. In 1997, aged 26, he was Scotland’s youngest self-made millionaire and later sold off the majority of his business empire to move to Monaco.
Other companies he owned, including Intercity Guards and Whyte Communications, have been dissolved in the past.
In addition to Rangers FC plc, he has directorships in six companies, according to Companies House – including Rangers FC Group, previously known as Wavetower, which was the vehicle he used to buy the club.
His main business interest is in Merchant Corporate Recovery – an investment firm, which, at the time of its last accounts for the year to March 2011 held investment stakes in bus company Countryliner, LM Logistics and Your Media Communications. Merchant made a small loss in the financial year and none of the directors took a wage.
He also has two new firms, Merchant Strategic Renewals and Team Discounts.