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Heavy Haulage Australia in administration; McAleese considers legal action


kscarbel2
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Australasian Transport News / June 29, 2015

Heavy Haulage Australia (HHA) has hit the wall and is in voluntary administration, 50 per cent owner McAleese and specialist accountancy Ferrier Hodgson have revealed.

The high-profile heavy haulage logistics specialist is now under the control of Ferrier Hodgson partners Brendan Richards, John Lindholm, and Tim Michael but any move there may have to contend with legal issues.

While McAleese some of the problems besetting HHA at the feet of an extremely difficult market making it unlikely the firm could handle its costs let alone make a worthwhile financial return, there appear to be deeper issues at play.

"McAleese Group is considering its options for legal recourse against the vendor (and associated parties) of the company’s shareholding in HHA Group, in connection with the sales process and conduct after that time," McAleese, which bought the stake last November, says in a stock exchange announcement.

The company expects to take a $17 million hit to its full year results relating to loans and interest and other receivables payable by HHA Group to it but insists it has no other exposure.

Ferrier Hodgson says the decision to go into voluntary administration was made" in the best interests of protecting the considerable assets of the company and maximising the prospect for it to continue as a going concern".

Richards, who leads Ferrier Hodgson’s logistics practice, expressed his disappointment in seeing another high-profile Australian transport business in distress.

"This is indicative of the downturn we are seeing in the resources sector and the knock on effect it has and will continue to have on the transport industry," he says.

"Unfortunately, HHA has a very high cost base and when revenues are challenged, it is left with little room in which to manoeuvre."

"We will be working hard to try and achieve a strong outcome for all of the parties involved, but this is a tough time for Australia’s transport industry and heavy haulage businesses in particular."

In the short-term, Ferrier Hodgson will continue to trade the business as normal while a buyer is sought and arrangements are made to protect the interests of the employees, customers, suppliers and creditors.

"A clear strategy and direction for the business is expected to be established within the week," it says.

Established in 1999, HHA specialises in 4,000-8,000 tonne haulage movements for infrastructure, mining and special projects.

Its services include, transportation, cranes, electrical wire, haulage consultancy, storage services, SPMT trailers, heavy haulage fleet leasing and specialist haulage services for the oil and gas, power, rail, refinery and infrastructure sectors.

HHA was also a prominent sponsor of V8 Supercars and the subject of the ‘Megatruckers’ series featured on Foxtel’s A&E Channel.

Heavy Haulage Australia (HHA) - http://www.hhagroup.net/

http://www.hhagroup.net/services/heavy-haulage-transport/

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Hmmmmmmm Tim your not the first person to say that or something along those lines.

There has been talk about this on some other Aussie forums and most people seem to feel the same way.

Kelly stepped on a lot of toes from what I understand even if I cut it in half and divide it by four he upset a lot along the way and goodness how many mum and dad firms he owes bucket loads to not good for them

Paul

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Yeah I heard the same Paul. I know locally he would use a pilot vehicle then wipe his ass with them and not pay them and move onto the next one.

Plus, he has been broke before, this is his 2nd time and I bet he will start up again and do it all again. Too much of that thing happens in this industry.

Also, he builds his truck with his wallet! Takes them to shows puffs his chest out like he is the man and claims he deserves a ribbon. While the true enthusiast like yourself and I, the only trophys we want are stone chips.

I do like his old macks but!

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Update: Heavy Haulage Australia undergoing restructure

Prime Mover Magazine / July 7, 2015

A week after officially being placed into administration, Heavy Haulage Australia (HHA) is now undergoing a rapid restructure in an attempt to preserve the parts of the business that could be of interest to potential buyers.

Ferrier Hodgson’s partner and Voluntary Administrator of HHA, Brendan Richards, said that the sales campaign calling for expressions of interest in both the business and its assets has generated a promising response so far, but a restructuring of the business is still considered unavoidable.

The downsizing reportedly affects 14 full-time and three part-time staff in Brisbane, two full-time staff in Toowoomba and six full-time staff in Perth and Port Hedland combined.

“We have informed all of the staff about the downsizing and explained that, while unfortunate, it is the only way that we have any chance of achieving a good outcome for both employees and suppliers,” said Richards.

“We are currently in negotiations with interested parties and I am hopeful of being able to announce a resolution in the very near future.”

According to Richards, HHA’s voluntary administration is “yet another indication” of the difficulties facing the Australian transport industry following the downturn being seen in the resources sector.

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Interest received for all and parts of HHA business

Australasian Transport News / July 7, 2015

The search for a positive outcome for Heavy Haulage Australia (HHA) has entered its next stage following Friday’s deadline for expressions of interest (EOIs) in the firm.

HHA entered voluntary administration last week, with accountancy Ferrier Hodgson handling the company and haulage firm McAleese, which owns half of HHA, making threatening legal noises.

"We’ve had a really good level of interest in the business," Ferrier Hodgson partner Brendan Richards says.

"It’s only early in terms of the process of selling it.

"We’ve had lots of expressions of interest – converting those into offers is the real task."

Amongst the EOIs, Ferrier Hodgson is also fielding interest in parts of HHA’s business.

Even if it comes to breaking the business up, Richards says he is "feeling reasonably confident that there is a solution out there".

On the block are assets including around 55 prime movers, 120 heavy haulage trailers, 15 cranes and 45 pilot cars and light commercials.

HHA’s services include mobile, track and rough terrain cranes, oil and gas rig and camp move services, self-propelled modular trailers and licenced electronic haulage escorts.

It also has facilities in Brisbane, Toowoomba/Wellcamp, Beaudesert, Port Hedland, Perth and Darwin.

Group turnover is estimated at about $50 million, which is said to be the amount sought by all creditors and about what HHA paid for trailers and 40 new Macks 18 months ago.

The $3 million purchase of half of HHA last November has been a huge headache for McAleese, which has admitted woes related to the move will cost it $17 million.

HHA’s public profile was raised with its appearance last year in satellite TV show MegaTruckers, which also brought managing director Jon Kelly to broader prominence.

But with that has come scrutiny of its finances.

Following the administration announcement, Kelly has stated that McAleese has been in the driving seat since the takeover.

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Yeah I heard the same Paul. I know locally he would use a pilot vehicle then wipe his ass with them and not pay them and move onto the next one.

Plus, he has been broke before, this is his 2nd time and I bet he will start up again and do it all again. Too much of that thing happens in this industry.

Also, he builds his truck with his wallet! Takes them to shows puffs his chest out like he is the man and claims he deserves a ribbon. While the true enthusiast like yourself and I, the only trophys we want are stone chips.

I do like his old macks but!

I have been told all sorts stories over years and none of them any good most times you come across some people that like them but not Kelly and the Kelly gang as they are known

They would go to shows and walk around shit can other trucks mouthing off all over the place very un Australian

Paul

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