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Vostech leaps out of the frying pan and back onto the boards

SIDELINED industrial technology player Vostech is set to return to the field tomorrow after a $1.7 million equity raising, which has helped pave the way to a deal with creditors.

Former Vostech managing director Richard Poole has joined forces with brothers Roger and David Steinepreis to return the company to the boards after nine months in administration under Michael Humphris and Laurence Fitzgerald of Simms Lockwood. Roger Steinepreis, a partner at Steinepreis Paganin, said the intention was to review and assess opportunities for taking the existing technology into some form of joint ventures, as well looking for potential new directions.

“We would like to look at investments in other new projects,” he said.

“Vos can’t live with just that (existing) technology, it has to look further and identify other acquisitions.”

When Vostech was suspended last year, it seems it had simply run out of steam after more than 10 years of developing frying technology that was estimated to have cost at least $25 million.

Long-running negotiations and in-depth testing by multi-national fast food chains had failed to deliver a deal for the Vos technology, which included an industrial fryer that sprayed oil to reduce waste.

There also was a smaller non-spraying unit, the V20. In addition, the company will examine the possibility of legal action.

The Steinepreis brothers, Mr Poole and their associates have taken about 20 per cent of the company and Australian Heritage Group has come in as a significant new shareholder with about 8 per cent.

Several former creditors have opted to take equity.

New funds were raised at 1 cent per share compared to the 3.9 cent price when the shares were suspended.

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