The liquidator of Riverland Fruit Co-operative Limited (‘RFC’), BDO Partner George Divitkos, today announced that all 490 shareholders were paid a dividend from the surplus funds from the liquidation of RFC. Cheques were mailed to shareholders last night. This follows full repayment to creditors, plus interest.
“We are extremely pleased with the outcome,” Mr Divitkos said. “A return to shareholders is a reward for their patience during the lengthy receivership and liquidation process and is a successful outcome, just in time for Christmas.”
George Divitkos was appointed liquidator of RFC in January 2002 by order of the Supreme Court of South Australia. This followed the appointment of Receivers & Managers to RFC in late 2000, who dealt with the majority of the “physical” assets, returning payments to secured creditors.
At appointment, RFC had some 2,000 creditors. More than 1300 were based in the Riverland, many of whom were fruit growers / suppliers. They were owed around $2.6 million. There was also an outstanding $400,000 South Australian Government loan.
Mr Divitkos and his insolvency team at BDO were able to provide two dividend payments to creditors that fully repaid creditor debts of 100 cents in the dollar. A further interest payment, representing 8% interest a year on the amount they had claimed, was then made to creditors in 2010.
“A payment of 100c in the dollar and interest to all creditors, plus a return to shareholders, is an extremely unusual occurrence from a court liquidation, particularly given RFC had gone through the receivership and liquidation process”, Mr Divitkos said.
“This is a terrific outcome for many individuals and small businesses that have trusted our team to realise assets. We have had close cooperation from creditors, the Committee of Inspection and strong legal advice, which enabled us to pursue and settle two significant legal actions.”
The RFC liquidation was mentioned in the Australian Senate as a success story as part of the IPAA submission for the 2009 Senate enquiry into Liquidators and Administrators.
Shareholders should receive their dividend cheques within the next few days.
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