PPB ADVISORY APPOINTED ADMINISTRATORS BY HASTIE GROUP

Hastie Group Ltd (ASX: HST) has appointed Ian Carson, David McEvoy and Craig Crosbie of PPB Advisory as Administrators to 44 companies in the Hastie Group, effective today.

Hastie Group is a provider of technical and engineering services to the building, infrastructure and resources sectors. It has operations in Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Ireland and the Middle East and has approximately 7,000 employees worldwide including approximately 4,000 in Australia.

Peter Anderson, Joseph Hayes, Jason Preston and Matthew Caddy of McGrathNicol have been appointed Receivers and Managers of 11 companies that include the refrigeration and maintenance services divisions in Australia. We understand the Receivers and Managers will continue to operate those businesses.

Receivers and Managers have been appointed to one company in New Zealand. All New Zealand businesses are expected to continue to operate as normal.

The United Kingdom and Ireland businesses are standalone operations. We believe they are profitable businesses with liquidity headroom and will continue to trade as normal under the control of the directors. Over the coming weeks we expect there will be an orderly process to sell the Rotary UK and Ireland businesses as going concerns.

The Administrators will remain in control of the companies that comprise the mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) businesses in Australia as well as operations in the Middle East. These businesses employ 2,700 people in Australia and approximately 2,000 in the Middle East.

There are insufficient funds to enable the Administrators to operate the MEP companies. Regrettably the Administrators have no option but to suspend operations whilst they assess the financial position of each company.

The Administrators will make every effort to assist employees.

PPB Advisory Chairman of Partners, Ian Carson, said it is particularly disappointing, but given the extreme financial situation of the Hastie Group there was no other immediate option open to the Administrators, who have defined obligations under Australian law. Ian Carson said: “We are obliged to confirm Hastie Group’s ability to fund trading before we can resume business. We need time to assess the details of the situation and to determine the viability of the ongoing businesses. In the meantime, we remain acutely aware of Hastie Group’s role on major construction projects and are assessing those urgently. We will provide an update to employees and other affected parties as soon as possible.”

Employee entitlements have priority for payment from the proceeds of certain asset realisations. We are unsure of the asset values, but in the event there are insufficient funds and the companies within Hastie Group are wound up, employees will be entitled to lodge a claim under the federal government’s General Employee Entitlement Redundancy Scheme.

A list of Hastie Group entities for which PPB Advisory is acting as Administrator is attached to this media release.

Further information is available to creditors and employees of Hastie Group under the Creditors Information section of PPB Advisory’s website at www.ppbadvisory.com.

Employees, customers and suppliers are invited to contact PPB Advisory’s hotline on 1300 868 464.

PPB Advisory media contact:
Tim Duncan                                                           Scott Hinton
Hinton & Associates                                            Hinton & Associates
Telephone: +61 3 9600 1979                            Telephone: +61 3 9600 1979
Mobile: +61 408 441 122                                    Mobile: +61 419 114 057

McGrathNicol media contact:
Paula Hannaford
Kreab Gavin Anderson
Mobile: +61 413 940180

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