Social/Professional

Hughes bruised as Westgem judge rejects voidables

Pitcher Partners’ Bryan Hughes. Pitcher Partners’ Perth office nabob Bryan Hughes has come in for some stick in a judgment of the Supreme Court of Western Australia, which has rejected Hughes’ multiple claims of voidable transactions in respect of stricken developer Westgem. In what may turn out to be a costly decision for Hughes’ litigation funder IMF, Justice Paul Tottle said yesterday that the basis…


Grant Thornton duo prepare to tread perilous path

Grant Thornton’s Matt Byrnes. Grant Thornton’s Phil Campbell-Wilson. Having replaced Jirsch Sutherland’s Malcolm Howell as liquidators of AXF Group, Grant Thornton duo Matt Byrnes and Phil Campbell-Wilson now have the job of negotiating AXF Group’s related party labyrinth, and that’s without considering the attitude of Howell’s out-of-pocket backers, Claims Funding Australia (CFA). According to Howell’s last report to creditors dated August 4, the Maurice Blackburn-backed…


Jirsch partner dumped as creditors invoke new powers

Grant Thornton’s Phil Campbell-Wilson. Grant Thornton’s Matt Byrnes. Jirsch Sutherland partner Malcolm Howell has branded his removal as liquidator of AFX Group Proprietary Limited “a blatant abuse of the new insolvency laws” after he was replaced at a meeting of creditors last Friday by Grant Thornton’s Matt Byrnes and Phil Campbell-Wilson. The meeting had been convened in accordance with ss 90-15(1) and 90-21(2) of the…


Cor Cordis’s $500,000 I-Prosperity indemnity

Cor Cordis’s Jeremy Nipps. Cor Cordis’sBarry Wight. The God awful mess that is the I-Prosperity collapse seems certain to test the patience, skill and resources of the nine practitioners currently appointed across the group’s many entities, but we think the Cor Cordis threesome of Jeremy Nipps, Barry Wight and Alan Walker will have the toughest time of it. iNO says this because according to the…


Insolvency 2020: How the year succumbed to CORONA

Mackay Goodwin principal Domenic Calabretta. Image courtesy Mackay Goodwin. They say the first sign of an impending tsunami is evidenced by the waterline receding. If that’s so then Sivaa Consulting’s FY20 Insolvency Analytics report demonstrates in detail how formal insolvency appointment volumes retreated in the latter stages of the 2019/2020 financial year. In July 2019 there were 944 formal insolvency appointments. The previous corresponding July…


Brother’s link to referrer complicates liquidator’s life

With its connections to Knox Grammar and the Baptist Church high profile building industry failure Clifford Constructions was always going to present added complications for whichever liquidators won the appointment, and that’s without the further complication of one of the liquidator’s brother’s links to the referrer. The link and the potential for conflict it creates is disclosed in the Declaration of Independence, Relevant Relationships and…


AAF’s alleged obstacles no hurdle for some

Worrels Partner Simon Cathro. ASIC’s Assetless Administration Fund (AAF) is routnilely bollicked for being too tightfisted, too difficult to access and just too bloody hard but a look at the numbers going back to 2016 shows there are some practitioners more fortunate than others when it comes to extracting those prized grant dollars. Number one has been Worrells partner Simon Cathro, who since My 2018…


Cant can’t shake dreaded friendly phrase

Romanis Cant’s Tony Cant. If there’s one term likely to irritate liquidators more than “corporate undertaker” it’d have to be “friendly liquidator”, a phrase that impugns the profession’s almost collective commitment to independence with unerring efficiency. We say almost because on occasion allegations may be aired by a court suggesting a liquidator has strayed, and in the case of Romanis Cant’s Tony Cant the damning…


Receiver resists inquiry into asset sale to appointor

Worrels Partner Simon Cathro. Hell hath no fury like a debtor who sees their assets sold at what they believe is significant undervalue – just ask Worrells partner Simon Cathro who is seeking to have dismissed an application for an inquiry into his conduct as receiver of International Business Corporation (IBC). IBC’s secured lender FC Securities appointed Cathro receiver of IBC and some related entities…


Worrells partner seeks to strike out phoenixing case

Worrells partner Jason Bettles. Worrells Queensland partner Jason Bettles has gone on the front foot in his defence of allegations brought by the corporate regulator of complicity in illegal phoenixing, launching an application to have ASIC’s case struck out. Submissions lodged with the Federal Court reveal that Bettles, who could face a judicial inquiry into his conduct as liquidator of Member Alliance Group if his…