Skope facing second creditors meeting
Controversial signage operation Skope Group will have its second creditors meeting on Monday. This could spell the end for the tangled business, which at one point had revenues of more than $40m and operations across the country.
During the meeting, the voluntary administrator will offer his opinion on the three options available to creditors: return the company to the control of the directors, approve a deed of company arrangement, or put the company in liquidation.
No-one in the industry is betting against the third option coming into play. Skope, or part of it at least, was already in a DOCA, which saw $1.5m of the $2.3m debt owed by related manufacturing business Clear Skies wiped off the books, much to the fury of the rest of the sign industry.
However, Skope in its role as supporting entity failed to make the February payment of just $22,000. The group was then placed in administration. Clear Skies still owes $700,000 under its DOCA, Skope having paid $88,000.
The original administrator for Clear Skies said its director, Robert Price, was a “dummy director” with Skope Group director Ann Orren and husband Charles Orren actually controlling the company. Clear Skies was effectively the manufacturing arm of Skope Group and its various entities, and, according to the administrator, was selling work to Skope at “uncommercial” rates.
Clear Skies racked up huge debts over four years, the majority of which were wiped away with the DOCA. Orren then bought Clear Skies for $100,000 when the DOCA went through.
Charles Orren was not listed as a director of the business; he was general manager of related entity Scream Visual, which went into administration last month.
Skope Group went into administration on 28 Feb, just three days after Orren registered a new trading name Skope Group Wholesale Manufacturing for the new entity she registered back in August Skope Group Holdings Pty Ltd with $5 in paid-up capital.