Little joy for Hewatt creditors

A Deed of Company Agreement has been entered into with Hewatt Pty Ltd and its creditors.
A Deed of Company Agreement has been entered into with Hewatt Pty Ltd and its creditors.

A second meeting of beleaguered Hewatt’s creditors, which took place in Canberra on Friday, July 25, voted unanimously to accept the company directors’ proposal to enter into a Deed of Company Agreement, as of that date.

Hewatt Pty Ltd went into voluntary administration in May, 2014. The civil earthworks contractor, which had been operating in the ACT and southern NSW region since the 1990s, owes subcontractors in the ACT and South East millions of dollars. 

Speaking to the News Weekly, Alan Walker, from PBB Advisory, the company appointed as administrators, said the Deed of Company Agreement was the prefered of two options offered to creditors, the alternative being to vote for liquidation.

“This option provides some degree of certainty,” he said, referring to the estimated 4.47cents in the dollar unsecured creditors will receive of what they are owed. 

In early July, the administrators, PPB Advisory, commissioned Slatterys to dispose of the majority of Hewatt’s heavy equipment fleet. The sale yielded around $9 million, however, the amount of money available to unsecured creditors is around $700,000.

When asked about this shortfall, Mr Walker said that the secured creditors would be paid first, followed by employees (all of whom would receive their full entitlements), partially secured creditors and finally, unsecured creditors. 

One such creditor is Co-ordinated Logistics, who is owed $350,000. Spokesperson for the company, Mark Nelson said it would mean a return of just $15,000 on his losses.

According to PBB Advisory’s Alan Walker, once the arrangements have been finalised, which he expects will take between nine and 12 months, the management of the company will be returned to the directors, “free of liability”, describing the process as a “restructuring of the business”.

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