ICT firm given £2.7m bailout by DfE linked to notorious Bright Tribe

Janet Downs's picture

Gaia Technologies, a supplier of ICT services to schools whose government approval was suspended in August when Gaia entered administration, has been given a £2.7 m bail out by the Department for Education, Schools Week reports.

This was to ‘minimise disruption’ in schools and an ‘attempt to get the best result for creditors by selling the business,’ The Register says.

Documents* seen by Schools Week show Gaia Technologies is ‘£5.8 million in the red’.   The firm has 192 creditors including HMRC which is owed over £860k.  The documents show the DfE will pay £200k towards the ‘trading costs’ of the joint administrators.   

Gaia Technologies supplied ICT services to, among others, the Academy Transformation Trust.  The trust awarded the ICT contract to Gaia when one of Gaia's directors, Anas Abdulmawla (aka Anas Mawla), was an ATT director.  In 2017, TES found ATT had paid Gaia more than £3.1m

Mawla was a trustee of Shelfield Community Academy before the school joined the Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT) and renamed Ormiston Shelfield Community Academy.  It still appears under its former name as a case study on the Gaia website.   TES found Gaia had been paid more than £3m by OAT before ending its contracts with the firm.

Mawla was also a director of My World Trust from November 2012 until February 2017.    The trust was listed as a ‘director’ (trustee) of the notorious Bright Tribe trust from November 2012 until October 2017.   Bright Tribe’s accounts for year ending 31 August 2018 show My World Trust was also a ‘member’ of Bright Tribe until October 2017. 

A fellow director of My World Trust from November 2012 to October 2019 when the trust dissolved was Michael Dwan who appeared in a Panorama programme in September 2018 which accused Bright Tribe of misusing public funds.   The case was referred to the police last month. 



*available from Companies House

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