Retro Computers Ltd, which absorbed £513,000 of backers’ money to produce ZX Spectrum-themed game consoles it then failed to deliver, has been wound up – by Private Planet. RCL, whose fortunes have been chronicled on El Reg, was wound up on 1 February 2019 by Private Planet Ltd. That company’s sole director is Janko Music-Flogel, whose other company, Planet Computers Ltd, produces the Gemini PDA and announces a second gadget in November 2018, the Cosmo Communicator. Music-Flogel is also a former director of RCL. In August last year, he resigned from RCL before one of the many legal hearings that culminated in his being ordered to pay £38,000 in legal costs to two of RCL’s founders.
Music-Flogel had to stump up along with RCL’s other then-directors: chairman David Levy and MD Suzanne Martin and the company itself. Private Planet’s winding-up petition was first filed on 30 November 2018. To obtain a winding-up order, a creditor must be owed at least £750 by a company. Private Planet’s director was originally brought aboard RCL’s ill-fated ZX Spectrum Vega+ console project by David Levy after co-founders Paul Andrews and Chris Smith left in 2016. Smith had written the console’s firmware but had not handed over ownership to RCL by his departure, leaving the company needing replacement software. The few dozen machines (RCL claimed 400) that eventually reached customers were running freeware emulation software FUSE.
We have contacted Music-Flogel to ask him for an explanation and will update this article if he responds. RCL’s sole director at the time of its winding-up, David Levy, had ignored emailed requests from The Register to explain what had happened. RCL was not represented at the winding-up hearing; a court official told El Reg.
As for the crowdfunding site Indiegogo, we have asked whether it will engage in the liquidation process to recover monies for RCL’s customers.