The TV Host Who Can’t Handle His Drink
The sommelier to Bangkok’s boiler room boys Nils Daniel Boccalini – also star of a little known television programme called ‘Thailand My Second Home’ is being chased by angry creditors who say that he should look for a third home.
Sweet talking Swedish amateur TV show host Daniel says he had a different story – but executives from a South African wine company flew into Bangkok last week to try and ‘lock up’ a container load of wine sold to him – until he pays. The fee owed is about US$20,000.
A British company claims it is owned some US$15,000 for spirits including a luxury whisky.
And in Chiang Mai the Honorary Consul for Austria is still waiting for his payment for 14 crates of exotic Thai Vodka.
It seems Danny boy has been mixing his drinks and his jobs. A long list of people say they have been ripped off.
The row has been simmering since a ‘Wanted’ poster of Boccalini was put up on Facebook. I cannot say what he was wanted for – but he quickly retaliated by putting on Facebook that the man whom he wrongly believed was the source of the poster was heavily into drugs ‘which are illegal in Thailand.’
Now what sort of people in Thailand caught in a corner claim their accusers are druggies? Readers of this site will know that.
Daniel moves among circles which include the self-styled ‘farang elite’ of Pattaya,
They are many, including movers and shakers who attend charity events in five star hotels and who will attend the opening of a can of baked beans.
Daniel hit on the idea of producing a television show featuring top class hotels, while at the same time selling advertising on the show.
To be seen as an important ‘farang’ in Thailand on television seemed to excite a lot of people and the show ‘My Second Home With Daniel’ , of which the production standards are well below any self-respecting TV channel, filled slots on True TV Channel 99 (but not a lot of people know that) with advertising cash from those who were interviewed.
The show comprised glamorous shots of the location and party plus a glib interview of the host or owner with Daniel. Daniel of course is also a salesman too. That is where the problem stems from it seems.
One local businessman Sergei Ghitti former manager of ‘Lucifer’s Disco’ in Patpong went into a joint venture with Daniel on a DJ tour of Asia. Ghitti brought in Dutch DJ David Dixon, real name David van den Hurk and also employed in the project sponsored by Winter Palace Vodka, were Ken Leing from the Theoxeny PR Company, and cameraman Mike Fowler. Boccalini took charge of the finances.
All the above are complaining that they were short changed out of most, if not all, of their promised cash.
DJ Dave’s tour included KuDeTa in Bangkok, The Pier, Pattaya, The Beach Club, Koh Samui, Xana Club, Phuket and f Club, Singapore.
|with Dixon at KuDeTa|
From Eindhoven Dave Dixon said: “When I approached Boccalini on the last day of the tour and demanded my money (usually half is paid up front) Boccalini threatened me by saying he was powerful and well connected and I should take my losses and go home quietly. He said people in Thailand would know him as a TV personality and a successful businessman.”
The sums here of course are not outrageous by Bangkok standards but the interesting part came when Boccalini started up a supposed 50/50 luxury drink business with Briton Mike Orpwood called Artisan, Thailand.
Mike is well known in the luxury drinks trade claims. He owned his own company Liquid Luxury and was then headhunted by an Italian import copmany G4. In fact he was the one person in the partnership who actually knew about the drinks trade.
But when he checked the company records he found not only was he not a director but had no signing powers over the accounts.
The majority owner was not their Thai lawyer as he thought. The lawyer was no longer answering calls because he had not been paid.
“Our customers were not paid and there was nothing I could do about it. Daniel was upfront. He said: ‘This is Bangkok. I am not paying anybody,’” said Mr.Orpwood.
“I am getting lots of complaints from customers who have said they have not been paid. That includes some £10,000 worth of spirits including luxury whisky from distillers in the UK. I do not know where the stock is,” added Mr. Orpwood.
As a result Mike Orpwood says had to disassociate himself from the company after just four months.
But Boccalini had done this anyway, he added, by sending a round robin to Orpwood’s suppliers, saying he was the new boss.
|Nikolai Prachensky (Nikki) and his wife|
Fortunately most of his customers knew him well and have now switched to Orpwood’s new company Artisan Trading.
Of course it was not Thais who Boccalini was short-changing.
Meanwhile African Queen have found their 10,000 bottles of wine and written to and now visited the Footprint storage facility demanded that none of the bottles be released to Boccalini.
Meanwhile Daniel has found new clients among Bangkok’s boiler room boys who run late night operations and bars where customers are happier with ‘cheaper brands’. Six of these venues advertise with him.
Boccalini is right of course. Unless he has money to throw away, a foreigner trying to call in a debt in Thailand can be on a hiding to nothing.
When I checked his website ‘MySecondHomeThailand’ I saw that Niel Daniel Boccalini was claiming he was born in Rome. One has to be suspicious about somebody that cannot remember that he was born in a suburb of Stockholm.
But when I caught up with him and brought up the complaints he avoided questions and said: “I am the man who puts things together.” He then excused himself and said could he call back. I agreed.
He did not call back so I called him today. “Are you the criminally convicted journalist who skipped his trial?”, he said, and then started reading from Brian Goudie’s CasewatchAsia Blogspot.
I then sent him a list of questions by email. He did not reply.
One thing I guess Boccalini can say however is: ‘Cheers’.