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Thread: Podmore bankruptcy criticised

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    Member Beachedas's Avatar
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    Podmore bankruptcy criticised

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    Former finance company boss Kevin Podmore has declared himself bankrupt, absolving personal responsibility for paying out any funds to the 9400 investors who lost $245m in his St Laurence companies. The bankruptcy should have little impact on his lifestyle as he is expected to continue to live in the $2.27 million family house that was moved into his wife's name several years ago, which one investor who lost money in St Laurence labelled "bloody disgusting".

    Podmore had made a $20m personal guarantee to St Laurence investors in 2008 through three of his other companies, before it was taken over by receivers in April 2009. But when the guarantee was called in, it appeared Podmore was unable to pay. The move to make himself bankrupt came shortly after trustee of the guarantee, Perpetual, told Podmore it would begin bankruptcy proceedings against him.

    The $2.27 million, 419sq m house at St Andrews Grove in Wellington that Podmore calls home was transferred into his life-coach wife Lyncia's name in 2005. Perpetual head of corporate trust Matthew Lancaster said it had rejected a Podmore proposal to partially make good on the $20m guarantee.

    "We had indicated we were going to push for bankruptcy and I think he decided it would be a better process for him to put himself into bankruptcy," Lancaster said. "The three corporate guarantors will be put into liquidation."

    Deloitte receiver Barry Jordan said it did not surprise him that Podmore had declared himself bankrupt. "He obviously doesn't have $20m. Our trustee [Perpetual] called up that guarantee and Mr Podmore and the three companies couldn't satisfy it so I think the bankruptcy was probably inevitable once he got to that position.''

    St Laurence investors are expected to receive around 15 cents in the dollar of their original investment.Kapiti investor Rowland Crone said the bankruptcy was well-deserved. "I think he should have owned up and done it before. He no doubt has assets or his wife has them or the family trust has them, I'm sure it happens all the time, but I guess the poor old investor just has to finish up paying all the time," Crone said.

    Another investor, who asked not to be named, said there were a lot of people left angry over the company's failure. "There are people around here who I have seen lost everything and they are struggling in their 80s. When I see people can't afford to get someone in to mow their lawns at the age of 87 and [Podmore] can still live in the [$2.27m] house... it makes me sick," the investor said
    Jordan said the bankruptcy made no real change to St Laurence's receivership with one final large loan to a large glass and metal recycling plant near Sydney being worked through and that should be completed midway through 2012.

    "There's a risk the glass, metal and all the constituent parts that flow from pulling various metals apart and breaking them down could have leached into the land - we don't believe they have but we have to check that out before we can sell them. We have to work with the local environmental agencies over there, it's not a quick process,'' Jordan said.
    Last edited by Beachedas; 06-06-2012 at 11:17 PM.

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