THE founder of the Bournemouth-based loan company Amigo has demanded to be installed as the chief executive of its parent company.

James Benamor threatened last night to call a shareholders' meeting unless the company's current board gave "suitable public assurances".

Mr Benamor said the company should be fighting a crackdown by the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) which has squeezed the business in recent months. He said the group could devote some of its resources to lending money away from the jurisdiction of the UK regulators.

Mr Benamor supported the decision to bring back Glen Crawford as chief executive of Amigo Loans Ltd, but said he should take the job of chief executive of parent company Amigo Holdings PLC himself.

He demanded the replacement of chief financial officer Nayan Kisnadwala within 30 days and the immediate removal of chairman Roger Lovering.

He also wants his own choice of directors on the boards of both companies.

Mr Benamor founded the business in 2005 but is reported to own only 14.6 per cent of it now.

Amigo’s founder quits – and launches attack on the company

He quit Amigo in March and was selling off his stake after failing in earlier attempts to appoint his own choices to the board.

In his statement, he said Amigo had a mission “to fight the unfairness of exclusion that comes from an industry that judges customers on their credit history alone”.

The business lends money at 49.9 per cent annual percentage rate (APR) to people who can find a guarantor to support their application. 

Amigo boss Glen Crawford returning to the business

Mr Benamor said Mr Crawford would have “a lot of work to do”, including “cutting back layers of unnecessary suits brought in by the previous board”.

Mr Crawford’s tasks should also include “fighting the unethical, and I believe unlawful U-turn by the FOS which has financially excluded millions of ordinary people”, he added.

He said: “The UK regulator’s actions have supported fraud by consumers against lenders, and a campaign of looting led by claims management companies, many linked to the most unscrupulous vultures the industry has to offer. Amigo Group does not have to maintain the vast majority of its assets in a sector where a business projected to make over £100m/year and which had several hundred million of future receivables net of debt could be valued at under £50m.”

As chief executive of Amigo Holdings, he would “support the board of Amigo Loans Ltd in their strategy of cost cutting, bond buy backs, debt clearance and judicial review of FOS decisions”.

He said the group had allocated hundreds of millions of pounds in asset to the loans business.

He added: “It is now time for some of that money to be taken back out of UK regulated lending, and used to pursue Amigo’s mission, building secure shareholder value in the process.”

In an announcement made after the close of the stock market, he urged the Amigo board to “work diligently” to respond in public before the start of trading on Monday. He suggested a shareholders meeting would be called if he did not receive "suitable public assurances".

Amigo has been approached for comment.