Cardiff-based PC builder OP3's trading company Top Banana ceased trading on 31 May - the very same day its much bigger rival MESH entered administration. MESH continued to trade under its new owners, although its website has been offline for several days. [updated: June 15]
The OP3 brand will live on, under a company called T3 Computers, also based in Cardiff.
'OP3' was the licensed trading name of Top Banana Computers Ltd, a Cardiff-based computer repair and systems build shop. It had the OP3.co.uk and Custombuildmypc.com web addresses. After it ceased trading, the company was described in a legal announcement as having 'no assets and significant debts'. The company will be wound up.
The 'OP3' brand has been taken on by a new company, 'T3 Computers Ltd'. But as with the MESH situation, customers who are owed money by Top Banana are advised to contact their credit- or debit-card company.
Any such customers should have received the following statement:
"On 31st May 2011, Top Banana Computers Ltd ceased to trade following a period of financial uncertainty and difficulty caused by lower than expected orders due to the current economic climate in the UK. At this point, in line with the terms of its licence, the authority to use the OP3 brand was withdrawn. With no assets and significant debts it is expected that the company will be wound up in the coming months by its creditors.
"Any customers who ordered through Top Banana are urged to contact their card issuer to seek refunds for outstanding orders. The company offices have been closed with immediate effect.
"On 6th June 2011 the authority to use OP3 brand was quickly snapped up by T3 Computers Ltd.
"T3 Computers Ltd was granted the licence to use the OP3 brand by its owners. T3 is a dynamic new player in the computer market, who has acquired manufacturing facilities within Cardiff, and expects to take advantage of the OP3 branding to produce top quality electronics equipment at affordable prices. The company envisages becoming one of the top 10 computer manufacturing companies within the UK by the end of 2012."
Zak Ali, Sales Manager at T3 Computers, told Expert Reviews that T3 would honour the three-year parts and labour warranties that Top Banana provided with PCs.
According to OP3’s website OP3 Technology was founded in 2008 by Zak Ali.
Ali was also MD of Custombuildmypc.com. A 2010 Custombuildmypc press release stated: “Top Banana Computers Ltd are the manufacturers of the OP3 brand and owners of Custombuildmypc.com based in Cardiff South Wales.”
Cardiff-based T3 Computers was founded on 17 May 2011. T3’s managing director is Kerry Collins.