A notice announcing McAleese going into administration has been posted by McGrathNicol on Monday morning, August 29. The team were appointed as voluntary administrators of McAleese Limited and each of its wholly owned subsidiaries with the exception of Sunshine Refuellers.
The McAleese Group is a public company and is listed on the ASX, it includes heavy haulage specialist, McAleese Transport, National Crane Hire and Walter Wright Cranes. Specialised Transport or WA Freight Group provides express transport services to and from all major capital cities both interstate and intrastate.
In the oil and gas arena, Cootes Transport distributes liquid fuels, chemicals, LPG and other petroleum products across Australia. Refuel International is a manufacturer of specialist fuel transfer equipment. However, Refuel International is owned by Sunshine Refuellers, which is an entity to which the Administrators have not been appointed. Resources provides haulage and onsite services to mining companies as well as a a quarry in Cloncurry, Queensland.
This administration comes at the end of a long struggle to survive for the company, after being hit by a number of different problems. The Mona Vale crash back in October 2013 meant the McAleese investment in the fuel carrier, Cootes, would struggle as high profile customers walked away from the operation, citing safety concerns.
This was followed by the collapse of Jon Kelly’s tottering Heavy Haulage Australia, a business in which McAleese had invested heavily, in order to prop it up.
In June McAleese entered into a binding agreement with its financiers for a proposed recapitalisation. The proposed recapitalisation was subject to two conditions being satisfied or waived prior to the expiration of arrangements extended by the McAleese Group’s financiers. One of these conditions was not met or waived by the financiers. As a result, the McAleese Group’s debt is immediately due and payable.
The Administrator says it intends to continue to operate all four business units in the short-term while they undertake an urgent assessment of the business. Cootes Transport is already up for sale and this process is set to continue.