Customers have been left angry and confused as broadband provider Tentel has fallen into administration.
All product sales have been stopped through the Tentel website as the Edinburgh firm faces closure by the end of June 2017.
Early indications are that despite rapid growth, Tentel couldn’t secure enough funding to carry on as a going concern.
The news leaked out over the weekend after business affiliates were told to take Tentel off their selling pages and to stop promoting the Scottish ISP.
There’s been no official comment from Tentel and the company has not yet responded to a request for details.
Tentel, based near Edinburgh, was set up in 2013 and has around 40,000 customers in the UK.
Corporate restructuring firm FRP Advisory have been appointed to handle Tentel’s administration.
I’m with Tentel, will my broadband go down?
No, it shouldn’t do. It’s understood that TalkTalk will take over your broadband account and from now on you will be a TalkTalk customer.
TalkTalk have told us that they have taken over every Tentel contract, so if you’ve got broadband with Tentel, even if it’s a 30-day contract, nothing will change and your service shouldn’t be disrupted.
How do I pay for my Tentel broadband now?
The price you pay for broadband won’t change, according to TalkTalk. Even your Direct Debit to Tentel has been automatically switched over so you don’t need to alter anything with your bank.
TalkTalk say that if you are waiting to have Tentel broadband installed, TalkTalk will do this for you
What to do now if you’re a Tentel customer
It’s being reported that everyone who has a contract with Tentel, whether that’s a one-month or six-month contract, will be moved over to TalkTalk broadband.
If your Tentel broadband is already up and running then TalkTalk will take over the running of it and you should be contacted by the company by email.
FRP Advisory say that Tentel will keep its customer service centres open until the end of June to help with the transition.
It’s understood that your accounts will be taken over by TalkTalk.
Who to call if you’re with Tentel
Tentel customer services are still answering calls for customers – the number to call is: 03330 112 321.
At this stage it’s not clear whether you will be able to get through.
Tentel has suffered severe criticism in past weeks on social media as customers report their broadband connections have been down, or set-up has not been completed properly.
Users also report being left hanging on the phone for hours on end waiting for a customer service advisor.
What went wrong for Tentel?
As recently as November 2016 company bosses were touting “record growth” and opened a new customer service centre in Edinburgh.
Tentel launched to focus on broadband sold on short-term contracts, mainly to students, renters and housing associations.
Managing director Robert McKechnie told the press last year that Tentel had “established ourselves as one of the fastest-growing independent internet service providers in the UK, with more than 10 per cent revenue growth month-on-month.”
Documents filed with Companies House show that Mr McKechnie was removed as a Tentel director on 16 May 2017.
Tentel were still putting out ads on Twitter to recruit new customer services advisors as late as the end of May.
It’s not clear what will happen to Tentel employees. When firms go into administration they effectively can’t pay their debts, so job losses often follow.
But TalkTalk are taking over Tentel accounts so these employees may stay on or may transfer to the new ISP.
Update: The administrators FRP Advisory have started talks with Tentel’s 54 staff.
Latest: Why Tentel failed
Tom MacLennan and Iain Fraser, partners with FRP Advisory, have been appointed joint administrators of TenTel Limited.
The corporate restructuring firm say despite rapid growth for Tentel, the business “had been unable to secure the funding needed to take it to the next stage of development.”
In a statement FRP Advisory said: “Talk Talk has acquired all customer contracts, and will be responsible for the on-going supply of broadband and phone services.
“The joint administrators will maintain the company’s offices until the end of June to ensure a smooth transition of services.”
What do TalkTalk say?
TalkTalk have moved to reassure Tentel customers.
They said today: “Everything should continue as normal – you will have the same broadband and phone service as you’ve always had, and you’ll be paying the same price.
“You can still access ‘MyTenTel’ in the same way, and you don’t even need to change your payment details – that will all transition smoothly.”