A member of a business family, Mr. Gupta started a metals trading business as a student at Cambridge University in the 1990s. In 2015, he turned to the manufacturing side, buying steel and other metalworks in the UK and later in other countries such as Romania, France and the US. With some of these facilities struggling, Mr Gupta was hailed as the savior of the UK steel industry.
Greensill’s loss of funding has seriously threatened Mr Gupta’s businesses, which employ around 35,000 people, including 5,000 in the UK. Mr Gupta has been trying to find new funding to save these companies, but disclosing a high-level fraud investigation could complicate those efforts.
The UK government has turned down a request for £ 170 million (about $ 240 million) in aid to aid the Gupta companies, citing their “opaque accounts,” according to another parliamentary committee that is investigating companies and the UK steel industry .
A spokesman for the Gupta companies said the group will “cooperate fully” with the investigation into the Serious Fraud Office and “make progress in refinancing its operations”.
A Greensill spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
While Greensill and Gupta had interests around the world, some of the biggest impacts from the Greensill collapse were in the UK, where former Prime Minister David Cameron served as senior advisor to the financial firm.
Mr Cameron has been criticized less and less for lobbying senior politicians and officials on Greensill’s behalf. He frequently used email and WhatsApp messages to address top ministers, including Rishi Sunak, the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Mr Cameron said he should have used more formal means of communication.
During a video appearance before a parliamentary committee investigating the Greensill collapse on Thursday, Mr Cameron appeared to show little remorse despite harsh criticism from lawmakers. One of them described his dozen of approaches to government officials as “more like stalking than lobbying”.