It is hard to indicate when it started, but for sport fans it definitely started in November 2006, when the chairman of a Perth-based fuel technology company Firepower became known as the main sponsor of the South Sydney Rabbitohs. The Rabbitohs’ part-owner Russell Crowe was the one to unveil the reported USD 3 million. The next step was Firepower’s announcement that it would be throwing its financial clout behind the Sydney Kings basketball team, which changed its name to the Firepower Sydney Kings. Later, Tim Johnston bought the Kings. So, in three smooth steps, Tim Johnston, standing behind the company, entered the world of Australian sport.
What is peculiar is the fact that the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has no record of a company called Firepower Group Pty Ltd, presented by the taxpayer-funded Austrade as an export success story in Russia; no record of a company called Firepower International Pty Ltd that represented Australia in another Austrade investment mission to Malaysia in August 2006; and no record of a company called Firepower Technology Ltd that appears on the Firepower website. However, Firepower Operations Pty Ltd, listed in the phone book, is first registered in December 2004 and owned by the British Virgin Islands-based Firepower Holdings Group Ltd.
Firepower is working in a technical capacity with General Motors Holden and, according to Johnston, is about to list on the London Stock Exchange.
How does Tim Johnston with its Firepower make his money? This seems rather suspicious and the number of versions and rumours is quite impressive â€“ from a multi-level marketing scheme based in New Zealand and links to a Russian winner of a multimillion-dollar legal suit against The Times in London over claims about his involvements in a large money-laundering scandal, to the involvement of the KGB and the NASA. There seems to be no much point to describe all those as far as the mystery has not been unveiled by anyone yet.