Stirling Homes’ creditors unlikely to see a cent
CREDITORS owed millions of dollars by the collapse of Gympie building company Stirling Homes are unlikely to get a cent, with the liquidation about to finish and the ex-wife of director Peter Bazzan paying for release from the company.
Receivers Cor Cordis notified the Australian Securities and Investments Commission they ceased administration for PRB Constructions, the second company owned by Mr Bazzan, on Monday.
Their departure follows an agreement earlier this year between the former wife of director Peter Bazzan, Karen Michelle Bazzan (also known as Robinson), and the company for her release.
The release was approved at a meeting between liquidators Chifley Advisory, and representatives of creditors the Australian Taxation Office, Tradelink and Work Cover Queensland.
About $6 million was reportedly owed to more than 130 creditors by the two companies.
Minutes of the February 26 meeting lodged in a report to ASIC reveal a public examination into the Bazzans investigated various pre-appointment transactions and issues "concerning (the) potential shadow director role of Ms Bazzan".
The findings revealed the pair were divorcing, and "it appears that Mr Bazzan has limited financial means while Ms Bazzan has some financial means in meeting any successful claim by the company".
However, the minutes said the liquidator's position was Ms Bazzan may have an arguable defence "with respect to various claims … and there are risks associated with commencing legal recovery proceedings against Ms Bazzan".
The public examination was funded by Peter Bazzan's brother, Geoff.
The meeting's chair, Chifley Advisory's Desmond Teng, said the liquidator's position was a settlement offer from Ms Bazzan of $75,000 was a "a commercial offer and should be accepted by creditors".
Other legal proceedings to recover money were still an option but needed to be"accompanied with funding commitment from creditors".
The ATO's representative, Usha Narayanaswam, asked if $75,000 was the best offer and was told Ms Bazzan had initially offered $15,000 before revising the figure upward.
This will reportedly be paid through the potential sale of Ms Bazzan's residential property, which was subject to divorce proceedings and is the mortgage security of the National Australia Bank.
The deed of settlement and release between Ms Bazzan and the company was ultimately approved by those at the meeting.
Mr Teng said yesterday the company was still awaiting Ms Bazzan's payment, and even the ATO was unlikely to receive anything back as a creditor.
A report by the liquidators early last year identified allegations of embezzlement and insolvent trading as key reasons for the company's collapse.
But Ms Bazzan refuted the claims at the time as "complete and utter rubbish" and no charges have been laid following the allegations.