Having failed to monitor the company myself via Companies House, I received an email a couple of days ago from an anonymous source calling himself Acorn Informer pointing out to me that the registered details for Acorn Computers (Cambridge) Ltd had changed. A quick visit to the Companies House website myself, and I had the new details.
Acorn Computers (Cambridge) Ltd was formed only quite recently, in December 2009, through Duport Associates Ltd, a Bristol based company, with the sole director and registered address only leading to Duport, who handle company registrations for third parties. In a post on The Icon Bar forums, Andrew Hodgson revealed himself as being behind it and in the ensuing discussion was willing to provide information regarding his plans, but was soon forced to give up the project, largely due to the actions of an anonymous party with some kind of chip on his or her shoulder. Andrew suggested that the company would be dissolved unless anyone was interested in taking it over.
Well, almost a year later that is indeed what appears to have happened – rather than dissolve the company, it appears that it is in new hands. The new registered address (which I won’t reveal here, though it is readily available via Companies House) is the residence of one Robin Hodson – member of the Wessex Acorn User Group, and whom some may remember offered free sandwich board advertising to RISC OS based companies, in late 2008.
After a false start, emailing the wrong Robin Hodson (who, by a remarkable coincidence, did actually work at Acorn for six weeks in 1996), I have contacted Robin to ask if he’d like to comment on the acquisition and his plans for the company. Unfortunately, all he could tell me was that obtaining the company was just a small part of a bigger plan, and that it would be unfair on other parties to comment further.
Looking back about a month or so on Robin’s Facebook Wall, amongst many other things there are various comments regarding legal paperwork, which may or may not be relevant, but this comment from 9th October would seem to indicate that a meeting has taken place to obtain the rights to a trademark. The meeting being described as ‘international’ would seem to suggest that one party was foreign – and the Acorn trademark is owned by Julien Clairet, so it seems reasonable to assume that this was the trademark in question.
Moss, the other person mentioned in Mark Fraser’s comment on that post, is almost certainly fellow WAUG member Moss Rolfe.