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Mediaweb’s tangled finances: receivers say they found false invoices, accounts

A leaked email to interested buyers of the failed publisher Mediaweb reveals its financial records were not all accurate.

The company, which has been in receivership since early March, was moved into liquidation last week.

NBR ONLINE understands former editorial staff who were creditors applied for it to be liquidated.

Tenders to buy titles such as AdMedia, Hospitality, NZ Management, FMCG, Grill, Catering Plus and traveltrade close this week.

However, an email from receiver Jared Booth to parties interested in buying the company, reveals not all invoices issued to customers were supplied by Mediaweb.

The email also states the receivers believe the financial and other information provided may have been based on false or misleading information, including false or misleading invoices.

It says receivers do not know to what extent the invoices are false but says they were produced in the second half of 2013 and the beginning of 2014.

Before it went into receivership Mediaweb had distributed false financial accounts for the year ended March 2012, the email says.

NZ Management ownership, IP issues

The email also reveals a company part-owned by former Mediaweb publisher Toni Myers is trying to stake its claim over NZ Management. Ms Myers has not responded to NBR ONLINE's requests for comment.

The publication is viewed as the most valuable of the range of titles.

The email says www.Unu, believes it owns the magazine but receivers are unconvinced that Unu’s claim is valid.

The receiver also says the Intermedia Group – which intends to enter the market later this year – is breaching Mediaweb’s intellectual property rights.

Two of the titles Mediaweb has for sale are called Hospitality and FMCG, while the Intermedia Group has said its titles will be called Hospitality Business and FMCG Business. 

The email says receivers have written to the Intermedia group about this and has advised them of possible legal action. 

Intermedia's New Zealand representative Dale Spencer has not responded to NBR ONLINE's request for comment. 

vyoung@nbr.co.nz

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