A Typo Bankrupts and Destroys a 124 Year Old Company (and cost $13.5+ million)

Spelling is very important.

How important? Just ask Companies House, the UK government’s registrar of companies.

In 2009, Taylor & Son was going bankrupt.

So Companies House, recorded the company as going bust.

However, the UK government’s registrar recorded Taylor & Sons as going bankrupt.

See the problem?

If not, check again.

Taylor & Son was going bankrupt, not the Welsh engineer company Taylor & Sons.

The one letter S was apparently worth £9 million ($13.6 million).

Taylor & Sons was established in 1875, and was going along just fine, but once the company was mistakenly noted as bankrupt, all hell broke loose.

The government noticed the error and corrected it three days later, but the damage had been done.

The false information was already passed on to multiple different organizations including credit lenders, suppliers, and clients.

Credit lenders and suppliers refused to work with them despite all pleas that it was all in error, and Tata Steel, which did work with Taylor & Sons to the tune of £400,000 ($607,000) a month had moved on.

At the time of the error, Taylor & Sons had employed 250 people, two months after the error, the company went bankrupt.

They recently sued the British government and was awarded £9 million ($13.6 million) from the British High Court to be paid from taxpayers.

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