Monday, June 4, 2012

Hastie Group subsidiary sold a week after collapse saving 134 jobs

By Business editor Peter Ryan
Administrators sifting through the collapse of the Hastie Group have announced the sale of a company which will save 134 jobs.
A week after Hastie Group failed putting 2,700 jobs in jeopardy, the administrators PPB Advisory have finalised the sale of the plumbing and hydraulics business, Cook & Carrick.
Hastie Group bought the Tullamarine-based Cook & Carrick in July 2007 for $18 million in an early phase of its expansion. A spokesman for PBB was unable to confirm a sale price or the name of the buyer.
However, the current sharemarket volatility and investor caution about a global downturn is making the sale of assets under the Hastie Group umbrella difficult.
At the time of the purchase in 2007, Hastie billed the acquisition as “another significant step in Hastie’s growth as a major building services group.”
Hastie and its 44 subsidiaries were placed in administration last week after a $20 million “accounting irregularity” derailed negotiations with banks to recapitalise the company.
Hastie posted a loss of $149 million in the six months to December and its share price tumbled from $9 last year to 16 cents before shares were suspended in April.
Administrators also dealing with the potential sale of Hastie’s overseas assets, including those in the United Arab Emirates where 1,500 staff are yet to receive termination entitlements.
The ABC reported last week that Hastie’s top three executives in the UAE last the country on 28 May after A$3 million was transferred from Dubai to Sydney.
Twitter: @peter_f_ryan

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