Former Brierley Investments executive John Beattie saw no signs of tension in missing businessman Herman Rockefeller when the two families enjoyed a holiday together in Australia earlier this month.
Mr Beattie is extremely upset and baffled about the disappearance of his good friend and said he totally endorsed remarks made about Mr Rockefeller by former colleague Sir Selwyn Cushing.
"He was very diligent and had a good personality," Sir Selwyn told the Hawke's Bay Today newspaper.
Sir Selwyn described Mr Rockefeller as an astute gentleman and slammed suggestions Mr Rockefeller could have been in financial strife.
"Herman always underplayed, not overplayed. He is a highly intelligent person."
Mr Beattie started working with Mr Rockefeller at Brierleys around the same time in 1986.
"Herman Rockefeller is a person who does not take substantial risks. I believe Sir Selwyn's assessment of Herman is entirely accurate," Mr Beattie said.
"Along with all my former associates at Brierley Investments, many of whom have contacted me in the past few days because they know of my close association with Herman, we are terribly upset and confused about the circumstances he found himself in, whatever they might be."
Mr Beattie's family holidayed with Mr Rockefeller's family in Melbourne early this month.
"I saw absolutely nothing during the close to a week that we were on holiday together and the subsequent activities we did in Melbourne that would lead me in any way to believe that he was experiencing tension of some form, either financially or in some other way," Mr Beattie said.
Mr Rockefeller's 2007 Toyota Prius was found near an abandoned homestead by a riverbank near Ballan, about 75km west of Melbourne.
The car was last seen leaving Melbourne Airport about 9.30pm last Thursday, after Mr Rockefeller returned from an interstate business trip. He had flown in from Newcastle after a four-day business trip.