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Theatre 247 faces action over ‘unpaid’ thousands

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Theatre 247 Limited, the company behind online television entertainment channel reelkandi.tv, has been dissolved.

Following this, The Stage has been contacted by a series of industry figures claiming they are owed money by Theatre 247 Limited, while the company is recorded as having county court judgements against it totalling tens of thousands of pounds.

Jon Hawkins, founder of online social network Stage Status, is currently in financial dispute with Theatre 247 Limited.

He claims that he is owed £1,000 for advertising the reelkandi.tv theatre and entertainment news player on his website for several months this year, but Theatre 247 Limited insists the sum is much lower.

Meanwhile, two of the company’s former freelance employees have approached The Stage with claims that they are owed thousands of pounds.

Neil Oseman, who has worked for Theatre 247 Limited as a freelance camera operator and editor, says he is owed almost £1,700, plus interest, for work he did more than four years ago for which he has not been paid.

Oseman says a payment plan was arranged with Theatre 247 Limited, but a number of instalments were never paid, which forced him to terminate the contract and request the outstanding sum upfront, which he has still not received.

Another freelance worker, who asked not to be named, claims to be owed around £5,000 for work carried out over a four-month period earlier this year.

Both said they have now taken legal action against Theatre 247 Limited.

A credit check of the firm shows that 11 county court judgements have been ordered against it between July 2011 and last month, totalling more than £60,000. Of this, less than £11,000 is registered as having been paid.

Entertainment union BECTU currently names Theatre 247 Limited on its ‘ask first’ list, which details companies that have allegedly failed to pay members in the past.

Andi Super, group head of commercial and media for reelkandi.tv and a director of Theatre 247 Limited, responded to each of these cases.

He told The Stage: “In essence, [Stage Status] provided over-claimed data on its traffic, which at present we believe to be too negligible to be an ongoing commercial concern.” Hawkins disputes this claim.

In reference to claims from Oseman, Super confirmed that a payment plan had been set up to repay the outstanding sums of money. He said: “We continued to offer payments under this plan, to which [Oseman] declined and sought legal recourse… We have since applied to set the judgement aside after he turned down our offer.”

Responding to the unnam­ed worker’s claim to be owed around £5,000, Super said: “We cannot comment on any employee we do not know the name of [or] the circumstances surrounding this employee. However, we might add that this is probably a freelancer – rather than an employee – as all our employees have been paid well and on time.”

The Stage understands that as of October 2, reelkandi.tv continues to operate as a trademark under the new company Willowgold Limited.

Theatre 247 Limited was formerly an advertiser on The Stage website, which featured reelkandi.tv.

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