Provident faces claim from Yes Car founders

Provident Financial is facing a claim for unfair dismissal from the founders of Yes Car loan company, who say the mid-cap lender sacked them just weeks before they were due to collect £38m as their share of the acquisition proceeds.

Len Newby and Joe Prince shared £11m with seven other Yes Car executives when they sold the cut-price car finance firm to Provident for £141m in 2002. Together with other executives who continued working for the company, they were entitled to a further payment of up to £50m if Yes Car hit performance targets over the next two years.

But at an employment tribunal due to start on Wednesday, the pair will claim they were sacked days before the target date and thus denied £19m apiece.

Provident claimed Mr Newby and Mr Prince had deliberately slowed the rate of car repossessions to make the figures look better, and sacked them for gross misconduct on 25 June, five days before the 30 June cut-off date for determining the final acquisition payments.

Last month, Provident took the pair to the High Court, claiming it had overpaid £26m for Yes Car. The case was dropped after 14 days.