Delta liquidated: creditors get in line

That was then: Delta mine workers from Wongawilli in action at the mines rescue competition in 2007.
That was then: Delta mine workers from Wongawilli in action at the mines rescue competition in 2007.

Illawarra workers and suppliers owed money from collapsed mining services group Delta will have to stand in line now the decision has been made to liquidate the company.

Workers are owed more than $9.6 million in entitlements, Delta’s administrators have found. They would likely retrieve between 60c and 100c in the dollar, company documents show. 

Other unsecured creditors won’t see more than 11c in the dollar, perhaps less.

Creditors of the Delta Group met on Friday with interested parties and decided to liquidate the company. 

Former employees are now being advised to lodge a claim with the liquidators, Said Jahani and John McInerney of Sydney solvency and audit firm Grant Thornton. They should also lodge a claim with the Federal Government’s Fair Entitlements Guarantee process.

An update is expected within a month.

Wollongong Coal had been blamed by Delta directors for sparking the service firm’s downfall. The administrators agreed the unprofitable contract to run the Wongawilli mine had been the fey factor which brought Delta to insolvency.

WCL’s failure to pay debts on time, and the mine and its infrastructure being in a poorer state than claimed, were named by administrators as major reasons the Wongawilli contract became unprofitable for Delta.

This had caused Delta to be trading insolvent since at least December last year, the administrators found in their preliminary report.

There is a possibility Delta’s directors could be liable for trading while insolvent. They have been asked to complete statutory declarations as to their finances.

A bid to sell Delta’s business and its assets had been attempted but was abandoned after South32 terminated its contract with Delta’s administrators. It is now the liquidators’ job to realise and distribute any assets, as well as enquire into the failure of the company and any possible offences by people involved with the company.

Before its collapse Delta employed about 600 people.