Vintage rescue bid

SHAREHOLDERS in Rockingham-based timber floor manufacturer Vintage Hardwoods are hoping to rescue the company with a buyout arrangement after major creditor, the National Australia Bank, appointed receivers to the company last month.

Former managing director David Day said the firm received a letter of demand from the bank for a sum of more than $860,000, which the com-pany had received through previous banking arrangements and primary debt that stemmed from the previous owners.

Mr Day said a request for a 21-day extension to refinance the firm was refused. Instead the firm was given just 24 hours to come up with the money.

Geoff Totterdell from Pricewater-houseCoopers was then called in as receiver and manager and the firm was offered for sale as a going concern.

“They [the banks] don’t take any prisoners. There is a lot of good blood on the ground but also some bad blood,” Mr Day said.

“We decided we are going to buy it [the firm] lock stock and barrel without encumbrances.”

He said the decision was then made to stand behind the firm and the staff. Mr Day said that if the finalisation of the purchase went ahead as expected the staff could expect to keep their jobs.

Since taking over the firm last April Mr Day said turnover had increased by around 340 per cent and the company was on the verge of making an announcement about a deal to supply timber flooring to a major Australian hotel chain.

“It is still very much a success story,” he said.

The company only recently com-missioned a new finger-jointing mach-ine, which it had purchased from Germany, and would further assist in the growth of the business.

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