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Veritas Directors Action on Nosh Sale Warrant Investigation

Bishop Warden: Actions of Veritas Directors During Nosh Sale Warrant Investigation

Commercial debt buying company Bishop Warden Limited has today submitted formal complaints to the Registries Integrity & Enforcement Unit of the Companies Office and the New Zealand Stock Exchange over the actions of Veritas directors during the Nosh sale process.

“After seeking indications of support from creditors, we decided to make a formal complaint to the Companies Office and the NZ Stock Exchange asking for the actions of Veritas directors to be investigated fully,” said Bishop Warden Communications Director Kirk MacGibbon.

Bishop Warden had hoped to be able to put a number of questions to directors at the meeting held for creditors of Old NGL Limited (in liquidation) on 4 October.

“It was disappointing that none of the Veritas directors felt it necessary to front up to their erstwhile creditors, instead leaving it up to the liquidators to read a prepared statement that provided no consolation at all,” said Kirk MacGibbon.

“We then put a series of questions to the liquidator, seeking more information about the sale process, but they were unable to provide answers.

“We have still not received any communication from Shephard Dunphy – and no answers to our questions – despite being appointed to the liquidation committee nearly two weeks ago.

“The creditors – around 150 of them – are in many cases smaller, family-owned businesses that supplied Nosh with the ability to keep its stores trading.
At the time of purchase, Veritas’ Chairman referred to Nosh’s “impressive revenues”, and “considerable potential for growth and innovation” and his confidence that “we can add substantial value to the business.”

“Bishop Warden believes that Veritas should pay the creditors. The debts were incurred under their watch, therefore they should pay up.”

Veritas listed on the NZX through a backdoor listing. The company raised $25m through a public share offer priced at $1.30. As at 13 October the shares were trading at $0.08c.

“That is a tremendous destruction of shareholder wealth in a very short space of time,” said Kirk MacGibbon.

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