Twice-bankrupted Phoenix Forex's self-proclaimed "sales legend" Mark Brewer was back in Auckland at birthday celebrations in a $4 million beachfront home yesterday but did not want to answer questions about the business, the subject of a warning by regulators.
Brewer, whose second bankruptcy was annulled in June, did not want to comment when approached at a small gathering in Milford and told the Weekend Herald to email questions.
The Weekend Herald understands Brewer is living at the property, which has a capital value of $4.15 million.
Brewer, 39, was out of the country with Phoenix Forex director Kendall Twigden when the Financial Markets Authority issued a warning about the firm last week.
Phoenix Forex offered clients access to the OakFX software package, which traders paid a fee of up to $25,000 to use. It was promoting OakFX as providing high returns and had previously advertised it as offering gains of 50 to 65 per cent, the FMA said in its warning last week.
"The FMA believes that Phoenix Forex's claims about the level of returns made by its trading system are untrue, and that Phoenix Forex is misrepresenting the profitability of, and risks associated with, its trading system," the FMA said.
Brewer emailed late yesterday to say he would reply to questions next week when he returned to work.
"I am sure Kendall will do so as well now that she has returned," he said. "Based on your visit today and the nature of your questions I would also urge a little balance and some accuracy in your reporting as I have been advised that Phoenix lawyers are ready to pursue any libel or defamation with vigour."
Twigden said last week that she did not accept the FMA's allegations.
Most references to Phoenix Forex have now been removed from the OakFX website.
Before it was changed, the website said Phoenix Forex believed in "supporting local communities and deserving organisations throughout New Zealand".
One of the charities claimed to be supported was the Starship hospital, which told the Herald it had no record of receiving donations from either Phoenix Forex or OakFX.