Investigation into Grant Shapps’ former web business HowToCorp resolved

PUBLISHED: 16:48 10 October 2012

MP Grant Shapps

MP Grant Shapps


AN investigation into Grant Shapps’ former web business HowToCorp has been “resolved informally” by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

The Welwyn Hatfield MP has come under-fire after it was announced the ASA was looking into claims the web business he founded with his wife was misleading customers.

The complaint, by university lecturer Aiden Byrne, argued that the website painted Mr Shapps’ pen name of Michael Green as a real businessman, and asked the authority to examine whether online testimonials praising HowToCorps’ products were genuine.

Mr Shapps, who resigned from the company in 2008 and handed full control to his wife Belinda, had previously branded to the complaint “spurious”.

The ASA has now confirmed to the WHT that the investigation has been closed.

A spokesman said: “We have closed the investigation, but we resolved it informally.

“We like to resolve cases in an informal basis where appropriate.

“With HowToCorp, the issues that were raised were no longer appearing on the site.

“We also received assurances it would make clear in future if pseudonyms were used.

“There was no need for formal action.”

Mr Shapps has spoken to the WHT about his involvement with HowToCorp.

See this week’s paper for the interview.

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