17/08/2004 - 22:00

Shipbuilder clears the debts

17/08/2004 - 22:00

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Shipbuilder Wavemaster International is confident it can meet its creditors’ demands, despite more writs having been lodged.

Shipbuilder clears the debts

Shipbuilder Wavemaster International is confident it can meet its creditors’ demands, despite more writs having been lodged.

Wavemaster general manager Malcolm Swaddle said the bulk of the company’s financial difficulties related to a contract the company had to build a 38-metre ferry and that a prospective buyer had been found for it.

He said the Singaporean company that commissioned the ferry had abandoned the purchase after it lost the route the ferry was to be used on.

The vessel is about 70 per cent completed.

“We’ll take a hit on our price but we’ll be able to cover our costs,” Mr Swaddle said.

“That will stall a lot of our debts as they are attached to that vessel.”

He said there would “be action taken” against the Singaporean company that had failed to complete the ferry purchase but refused to specify what form that action would take.

As of July 5 the company had received writs totalling nearly $155,000. In the past three weeks Wavemaster has received a further $30,700 in writs from creditors. It has also been ordered by the courts to pay creditor OneSteel Trading $45,660.

Of the most recent writs, the largest is from Flagship Enterprises, which is seeking $17,400. Tenix Defence has also appeared as a creditor.

There had also been claims in July that Wavemaster’s workers had not been paid.

Mr Swaddle said the company had missed one payment to workers – himself included.

He said the Wavemaster’s Malaysian owners, Penang Shipbuilding and Construction, had kept the 100-strong workforce employed through the time the company had been without a contract.

Wavemaster has recently started winning some ship-building contracts after a nine-month lean patch.

It  won a $6 million contract to build a ferry for Danish company Christiansoefarten and is in a good position to win another contract of similar magnitude.

Mr Swaddle said the new contracts would help it trade into a strong position.

The company is ranked 37th in the WA Business News List of Largest Exporters in WA with a reported export revenue for 2002-03 of $36 million.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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