Ross Asset Management liquidated

Ross Asset Management (RAM) and three associated entities have been placed into liquidation.

Those entities include Bevis Marks Corporation; Mercury Asset Management; and McIntosh Asset Management.

RAM’s receivers John Fisk and David Bridgman have this afternoon been appointed liquidators by Associate Judge David Gendall.

“I have no doubt the companies are quite unable to pay their debts and the application for liquidation is granted.”  Associate Judge Gendall said.

Messrs Fisk and Bridgman have so far found just $11.5 million of assets in the company. There was reported a total of $450 million.

Investors’ group spokesman Bruce Tichbon applied to the court to reconsider the appointment of the liquidators, claiming there could be a conflict of interest if Messrs Fisk and Bridgman were appointed, because they are already receivers.

However, Associate Judge Gendall admitted he was “somewhat unclear” as to what the shape or form the conflict of interest took.

Financial Markets Authority lawyer Hugh Rennie QC said he was reluctant to give “additional facilitation” to communicate Mr Tichbon’s concerns to the court.

“While it is undoubtedly correct Mr Tichbon has been industrious in contacting many investors and in his dealings with the FMA, the FMA’s response to that is to deal with all investors equally including putting correspondence to and from Mr Tichbon on the authority’s website.

“As with many liquidations, there are creditors with a proper and genuine interest. There is no special reason why anyone creditor should have additional facilitation in communicating their particular views to other creditors.”

Associate Judge Gendall also made an order keeping the complete list of creditors confidential to the liquidators.

“As I understand it, various creditors in these companies have major concerns to continue this confidentiality arrangement. I see no reason why those earlier orders cannot continue.”

Messrs Fisk and Bridgman’s lawyer Michael Colson said there had been wide-spread coverage of the case and many of the investors did not wish to have any publicity.

“Some are in a serious state of distress.”

bcunningham@nbr.co.nz

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