20 April 2011 - 8:01am | posted by | 0 comments

Olympic athlete Brian Whittle to sue Scottish Enterprise-backed TalentNation

Olympic athlete Brian Whittle to sue Scottish Enterprise-backed TalentNationOlympic athlete Brian Whittle to sue Scottish Enterprise-backed

Former Olympic athlete Brian Whittle has lodged an action at Hamilton Sheriff Court against ex-employer TalentNation. The case is due to be called tomorrow.

Whittle, is one of a number former workers at the internet business who claim they have not been paid.

The business was launched by high-profile journalist Steve Sampson, a former editor of the Scottish Sun, and benefitted from £1m worth of funding from Scottish Enterprise.

However, in recent months it has become the subject of a series of claims by disgruntled former staff who include Craig MacKenzie, the brother of former Sun editor, Kelvin over unpaid fees.

As well as Scottish Enterprise, the business – which bills itself as 'sport's biggest social network' - has also attracted investment from some major footballing names including Scott Brown, Kenny Miller, Gary Caldwell and Michael Dawson.

However, despite its PLC status and public funding it has not filed accounts since the 31/10/08, when it reported a shareholders' deficit of £223,005.

Whittle, who competed in the Seoul Olympics, won the gold medal in the 4x400 metres relay in both the 1986 and 1994 European Championships, is the first individual to seek redress against TalentNation through the courts, although others are considering action.

He has not enjoyed as much success in business however. His previous company PB Events collapsed after a plan to bring Bill Clinton to Scotland fell through at the last moment.

He declined to comment in advance of the hearing, but Sampson, who insists TalentNation is a strong and viable entity said in an email: “Left it to my lawyer. Two minute job.”

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