back to article Phorm issues shares to raise cash

Phorm told the Stock Exchange today that it will issue a million shares to institutional investors in order to bolster its dwindling cash reserves. The company is currently concentrating on Brazil and China. It is still under police investigation in the UK for failing to inform BT customers that it was snooping on their …


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  1. Flugal

    Surely this will fail

    Any investor would presumably have to exist in a due diligence vacuum to spunk money on this guaranteed fail.

    Bad luck and numerous unpleasant illnesses to Phorm, their investors, and all they represent,

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Due diligence?

      Companies like phorm pass due diligence, but have a set of "conditions" attached to the purchase.

      The most common set of conditions is that the company receiving the investment hires a specific outsourcing shop in UTC+5:30 to do a chunk of work. So while the company itself may be a guaranteed failure it is also a guaranteed conduit to move some money offshore tax-free declaring some losses in the process which can reduce your tax bill even further. After that you can repatriate it back, invest again, repatriate it back and so on with the carousel continuing ad naseum and not a single penny landing in the taxman's coffers.

      It is an obvious tax fraud but as long as outsourcing is not subject to a suitable excise duty there is f*ck all Inland Revenue can do about it in practice.

      I find it quite funny how it keeps fretting about pennies underpaid here in the so called "VAT carousel fraud" while people continue to drive ocean liners full of cash through the "invest and condition it on outsourcing" carousel. It is one of the _BIGGEST_ reasons for outsourcing by the way if not the biggest. Money talks.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  2. Anonymous Coward

    £2m fast funding

    £2 phast phunding....or is that too obvious?

  3. Neil Greatorex

    Who's going to buy these shares?

    Are institutional "investors" completely stupid?

    Phorm have burnt through a shed-load of cash already, they're under investigation & they have no real viability. The bubble has burst, Phorm really are the new boo

    Back to the old Mantra: Phuck off Phorm.

    1. Beau

      Easy to Solve!!

      Any Bank can buy them, just by using clients money, and not their own!!

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Uh oh

    Kent is merely "pleased". Not even "tremendously excited"?

    Things must be bad at Phorm these days. What a joke.

  5. Pirate Peter

    sp takes a dump

    the normal kent effect is in full swing

    kent ertugrul speaks and the share price takes a dive

    PHRX Share Price: 142.50 Bid: 125.00 Ask: 160.00 Change: 0.00 (-28.75%)

    PHRM Share Price: 157.50 Bid: 150.00 Ask: 165.00 Change: 0.00 (-5.97%)

    good to see everyone has such confidence in him

    the thing to note is the drop in the PHRX price these are held by a far smaller group as there are restrictions on who can hold them and trade themand these tend to be steadier even when there is bad news around

    so much for raising the cash in brazil!!, whats up kent investors over there not interested due to all the attention DPDC, CCJ and CADE are giving you and your "partners" and the debate in korea is not exactly going your way either


  6. ed2020


    One has to wonder what Kent would consider to be an *unsuccessful* launch.

  7. Conrad Longmore
    Thumb Down

    Die already

    Die already. Nuff said.

    1. It wasnt me

      I've had enough.

      I'm not normally a language nazi, but this 'already' on the end of every sentence is really starting to itch. Please explain it ? It just make you sound retarded.

      1. Intractable Potsherd


        As I understand it, the use of "already" on the end of a sentence or phrase is part of New York Jewish idiom. I don't know how it came to be, but it seems to be an accepted use of language in some parts of the US. I don't hear it much in the UK, so it may be fairly localised slang.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Die, you fuckers!!!

    That is all...

  9. Anonymous Coward


    that is all.

    Actually no it's not - why, if the police are investigating, have they not been royally shafted by now? It's not like it's a complicated issue.

  10. Z 1

    Nothing more enjoying...

    ... than watching the long drawn out death rattle of bunch of greedy, unwanted, useless ad-men.

  11. Matt D


    What kind of institution are these investors from? Broadmoor?

  12. 7mark7

    Easy come ...

    ... easy go.

  13. nichomach

    Face value, £2m...

    Actual value...not so much?

  14. kain preacher


    Who the hell keeps on giving them money ?? I have some bills that need to be paid and part of the bay bridge for sale .

  15. Anonymous Coward


    "Phorm told the Stock Exchange today that it will issue a million shares to institutional investors in order to bolster its dwindling cash reserves."

    "Institutional investors"? Shurely they meant "institutionalised investors" 'cos let's face it, anyone who ploughs money into Phorm is a few sandwiches short of a picnic!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Kent does the opposite of what he says he will do - again

    Was it only a week ago that Phorm issued their 2009 accounts and told us in paragraph 4 of page 4, that they WERE NOT going to do this? That their strategy was for "funding at the local level" and that they were not keen on the dilution effect involved in a further Phorm Inc share issue?

    Oh well a week is a long time in the Brazilian Senate and the Korean parliament and I suppose they decided they desperately needed at least one months more working capital. And Phorm have always had difficulty matching their predictions with the outcomes.

    this company are sunk. finished. kaput.

  17. Paul Gomme

    The internet is a global community...

    And was set up for the free exchange of information...

    The current usage may not meet those aims, but neither does it give anyone a license to mine it for commercial purposes.

    If you wish to allow your personal details to be sent to a third party, that's fine. But that should be YOUR choice. An ISP that automatically opts you in, simply cannot be trusted..

  18. Kevin Johnston

    Share value

    Just wondering, what is the half-life for a Phorm share?

  19. David 45

    Going down for the tird time?

    Rats, sinking ships and straws, anyone?

  20. An ominous cow heard

    "The ad peddler lost $100m in the last financial "

    So they lost say $2M a week, roughly.

    Using your skill and judgement, how long will £2M last them?

    Answers on a postcard please to Stratis Scleparis, wherever he may be.

    He used to be on LinkedIn.

    He used to be BT Retail's CTO at the time of the denied trials.

    He used to be Phorm's CTO after the trials.

    Now he's invisible.

    How odd.

  21. Anonymous Coward

    And in accordance with their privacy policy...

    ....they are going to publish the names, addresses and bank details of all share holders.

    Well maybe not, but who in their right mind would trust this shower with their personal data (let alone cash) - if push comes to shove they would probably sell it to raise more revenue.

  22. N2

    To all potential investors in Phorm

    Put your money in a heap in the garden and burn it

    At least youll have the smug satisfaction of contributing to a little global warming as opposed to getting fuck all for it with Phorm.

  23. Anonymous John

    We need

    a PHAIL icon.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    My sympathy

    Brazil has enough problems without the scum of the earth turning up to fleece them of their privacy and cash!

    Perhaps if we have a whip round on the Reg forums we can hire one those death gangs we hear so much about, to sort something out?

  25. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    The Big Open Secret in Society?

    Phorm ..... is not really anything to do with ad peddling is it, but much more a to do about Minority Report type algorithms and deep packet inspections for an inkling of future likely intent? And that makes it a most valuable stock/program?

    But it/they are pretty useless and more of a liability, without smart analysts to ensure the attendant metadata is robust and justifiably secure against proxy challenge.

  26. John Smith 19 Gold badge


    Start a roll


  27. The Original Steve


    So that should last just over a fortnight if the last years financial loss is anything to go by...

  28. Anonymous Coward

    Still lots of un-answered questions

    One such is:

    Why have there been no prosecutions at BT and Phorm over the illegal trials? An illegal secret traffic-interception activity clearly took place but, as is documented in many places, such as [1], no action was taken and the issue was passed from pillar to post with no-one grasping the nettle. Why is this?


    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Lie back and think of ......... well, whatever , whenever you are getting right royally shafted


      Haven't you yet worked out how the System works? The law is an ass and justice its mules and your views matter not a jot in the Big Media Picture and Great Game.

      It is though, I admit, a little more complicated than that simplification but here and now is neither the time or the place to expand upon it.

      Oh, and what would be known of as the Establishment, has completely lost ITs Control of Crazy Plots for they have no leverage in the Virtual Domain which now Rules and Reigns Supreme and Sublime in Reality.

      And that is a little something stealthy which I am not at all surprised Lester and Lewis have not picked up on from their sources, and reported on. Prepare yourselves for a ...... well, Big Bang doesn't even begin to do it justice.

  29. TkH11


    I doubt there will be any opposition in China by the government of Phorm, if anything, I'd expect the Chineese authorities to request changes to Phorm to actually not anyonymise the information and then forward it on for data warehousing by a secret arm of government...

    you just know they'd do it.

  30. Renan "C#" Sousa

    "Successful launch in Brazil"

    Actually, no. I'm speaking from Brazil here.

    They've managed to bill Oi, their ISP partner, for about a million Euros so far. That's quite less than what they lose on average per month, right? And I'm sure it's a small fraction of the value of the fine that the local government is about to produce due to some irregularities in the business they're making here.

  31. DavCrav

    Quick question

    Q) How did Phorm manage to lose £100m last year when it doesn't do anything, and how is £2m (i.e., a week's losses) going to help?

  32. The Metal Cod

    Phuck off and die

    Somehow Phorm is hanging around like a dose of the clap that just won't go away. Will someone with cojones and legal clout please terminate Phorm's existence for one and for all? Phorm have never proven the legality of their "product" - that should speak for itself.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    So what?

    Can't really see a problem with this - as long as it complies with the law and allows users to make an informed choice of whether they're profiled or not. Listening to the commentards on here is quite pathetic: "Meh meh meh its so unfair....interwebs shud be free....i wanna my content wiv no nasty ads...."

    If it's legal, do it.

    Phorm ph*cked up in the UK because they didn't comply with the law - should they try again (this time on the right side of the law) I'd welcome them.

    PS - I'm not a Phorm employee. Nor NebuAd / Front Porch. Not in advertising at all.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon


      "PS - I'm not a Phorm employee. Nor NebuAd / Front Porch. Not in advertising at all."

      Yet you have exercised your right to anonymity. How ironic.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      But it doesn't

      comply with the law.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A Truly Lamentable Performance

    (Cash) Burn Baby (Cash) Burn!

  35. Anonymous Coward

    Fickle investers

    I hope all those investors who have burned their Phingers on Phailed Phorm learn a lesson or two in life.

    If it seems to good to be true it probably isn't.

    If it comes from Phorm, the speech most probably definitely isn't.

  36. The Nameless Mist

    How long does the UK Police investigation take already?

    They've been shown to be taking UK citizen's IP traffic without telling them they're "involved in a test".

    Throw the book at them and ban them already.

  37. Anonymous Coward

    Going down

    A lovely graph of the Phorm share price in steep descent can be found here:

  38. MJI Silver badge
    Big Brother


    I actually told some UK staff I was off if it was implemented, it seemed they had had hundreds of complaints.

    My only problems were 6 BT email addresses to change and a BT Vision box.

    I think the rear of losing a good proportion of customers sorted out BT.

    I have included Kunts dream date

    1. Alex C

      re BT

      I would have done the same if I was with them (and made damn certain my provider at the time knew Phorm was a deal breaker)

      When BT occasionally try to get my business I remind them that they sold our privacy up the Swannee, without even asking first. Not that the drone in the call centre cares...

      1. MJI Silver badge

        I am stuck with BT

        Well mainly that the free Freeview PVR they gave us needs BTBB to operate, and it is full of Come Dine With Mes - and I don't want to upset the wife.

        Then loads of places using our email addresses.

        But Phorm would have forced the change, I did phone up BTV support and ask about moving from BT and then they got into a panic.

        I think one of the reasons they dropped Phorm is the threats from BTV and Total Broadband customers.

  39. VulcanV5

    Elastoplasts for The Titanic.

    Worth noting that when any ship is listing so badly that it will inevitably sink beneath the waves, every second gained in staying afloat means a greater opportunity to launch the lifeboats and a greater chance of escape by those on board.

    Though SS Phorm (the initials can be taken to represent whatever you wish) has been toppling over in slow motion for almost two years, it has managed to limp to a couple of foreign ports in hope of attracting more passengers. It has also had its ballroom extensively refurbished and a new orchestra hired.

    But nothing can patch the hole beneath the water line and nothing can bring back the £100m that was spent on everything but life-boats, this despite the way the best-equipped of those vanished over the horizon with former First Matey Stratis Scleparis at the helm. (Incidentally, Scleparis has now gone back to what he used to be -- Albert Brown -- as there's no longer any need to compete with Phorm's CEO in the Really Silly Names competition.)

    The £2m now being sought is the last whip-round amongst onshore friends and relatives who've been led to believe this comparatively trifling sum is all that's needed to keep SS Phorm afloat, in much the same way as donating Elastoplasts for The Titanic would've solved its own difficulties with the iceberg.

    All that's left to ponder on now is how many lifeboats are fit to be launched -- and will that renowned financial genius Norman Lamont get one all to himself?

    Phorm. About to become the deepest packet of 'em all. Glug. Glug.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Needs an Astute

      Now that will sink it!

  40. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

    Re: Who's going to buy them ?

    I'd guess anyone who thinks Phorm can overcome the public disgust and legislative restrictions which currently keeps them out of the marketplace.

    Don't forget there are ISP's and others who obviously think Phorm is a good idea. There is a potential market out there.

    What? You thought investors and backers have ethics and morals?

  41. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Phorm. Last of the unflushables.

    I hope not.

  42. Morel's Ghost
    Thumb Up

    @ AC 08:56

    Amid all the salt-the-ground-Kent-Ertugrul-has-walked-over-and-drizzle-it-with-holy-water gnashing you have a fair point. If Phorm can come back with a strictly opt-in version of Webwise with clear and full information about what they're doing, then find enough people who are dumb enough to sign up, then he isn't breaking the law and ought to be able to deploy. Those ifs are dependent on Kent finding a truckload of cash to float his operations long enough to generate a revenue stream - with no possibility of further equity dilution (hence the obviously desperate £2m share issue) and £100m of investor cash already up the Swannee that's going to be next to impossible. I suspect his subscribers are waiting for a white knight (ISP anyone?) prepared to snap up Phorm data-snaffling kit at a bargain basement price. Does anyone think that Kent and his venal pals haven't mapped out an exit strategy?

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon


      Don't forget that in order to make that opt-in legal, no opted-out traffic would be able to legally pass through their DPI kit - and that would break their technical model.

      1. Morel's Ghost

        @ Sir Runcible Spoon

        Of course you're right if they're still using their cookie-based opt-out, but Ertughoul's recent Annual Report suggested this isn't the case anymore:

        "... technical trials such as those undertaken by BT in 2008 are no longer necessary. It is now possible to ensure that the only data that our system comes into contact with is that of a consumer who has explicitly granted opt-in permission."

        Not that there's any reason to trust anything KE says (even when he's saying it under the auspices of AIM reporting requirements) but it looks like he's realised that it's game over for opt-out based snooping. This is probably a moot point, as the deep dark whirlpool where he'd like his operational budget to be will sink him long before he gets to prove his new model. When that happens, it'll be worth keeping an eye on the deserting rats to see what happens to the kit they've developed.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Sorry, not correct

      you need consent from both parties to a communication. BT's/Virgin's/Talk Talk's customer cannnot give consent on behalf of the other party.

  43. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

    For those

    wondering who invests in phorm shares, may I refer you to the whole CDO swap phuck up that many of the investors bought into willingly on the chance of making a $ or 2

  44. Yorkshirepudding

    rot in silicon hell

    that is all

  45. Sam Therapy
    Thumb Down

    Agree with many of the previous posters

    Die, you scabby bastards. Painfully.

  46. James Pickett


    “it will issue a million shares “

    That’s not going to raise £2m, then, is it? About £2 if the investors aren’t quick...

  47. Camilla Smythe

    China now....??11!1?

    Chuckles.. ㅋㅋㅋ

    Next stop Elbonia.

  48. This post has been deleted by its author

  49. An ominous cow heard

    A week later.

    It's a week later. They had, according to the calculations, two weeks or so. Are they nearly bust yet or has the white knight arrived?

    Are the techies (well, those that remain now that CTO Stratis Scleparis is long gone [1]) ready to relocate to (say) Cheltenham?

    [1] Did you know that before he was CTO at Phorm, Stratis Scleparis was CTO at BT Retail, including at around the time of the denied trials... small world, isn't it.

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