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Kailis takes over R&O lobster assets

LIVE and frozen lobster processing facilities at Lancelin, the major assets of failed processor R&O Seafood, have been acquired by Kailis & France.

The sale, for an undisclosed sum, is understood to have followed the failure of an earlier deal between New Zealand lobster player George Stavrinos and administrator Louis Nilant of Clout & Associates.

Mr Stavrinos is believed to have found another way to access the WA market as the beach price for Western rock lobster jumped to as much as $32kg in the opening weeks of the seven and half month season.

R&O chief Nic Ruello could not be contacted but Business News understands Kailis & France, through its subsidiary Lobster Australia, bought the assets of two companies, Mainstreet Holdings Pty Ltd and Mainace Pty Ltd, which both traded under the R&O name.

Secured creditors owed around $2.2 million will receive a partial return of their claims.

It is believed unsecured creditors owed as much as $2 million are unlikely to see any of their debt repaid.

Some fishermen have missed out on bonuses which could have been worth as much as $495,000, based on bonus payments of as much as $1.65kg for the 1999-2000 season.

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