Cara Waters | 20 November 2012

Nahas Construction latest Aussie home builder to enter administration

Nahas Construction has entered administration owing over $25 million to creditors, following what the administrator describes as a "domino effect" of construction company collapses.

John Vouris of Lawler Partners has been appointed as administrator to Nahas Construction NSW, Nahas Construction and Development and Nahas Construction.

Non-payment by Nahas Construction was blamed for the collapse earlier this year of Bluestone Constructions.

Bruce Oaklands, principal supervisor and licence holder for Bluestone Construction, told SmartCompany that Bluestone was not paid for work it did as a subcontractor for Nahas Constructions.

At the time, Nahas Construction spokesman Joe Nahas toldSmartCompany he could not confirm nor deny whether Nahas Construction owed Bluestone Construction money and whether it owed money to other contractors.

"It is a fair bit of baloney. I am not denying or admitting anything," he said.

Now Nahas Construction has collapsed and administrator Vouris says he sees "the domino effect" of company collapses all the time.

"It is a major cause of company failure where they rely on their debtors to pay them and there is one that does not pay – it is a domino effect," he says.

Vouris says the convening period for the administration has been extended until December 11 to enable him to determine whether National Australia Bank is a secured creditor.

National Australia Bank is owed $23 million and claims it is a secured creditor but the director of Nahas disputes this claim, Vouris says.

"If they are satisfied and release the Nahas group of companies, creditors may get a distribution through a deed of company arrangement. But if [the National Australia Bank] is still in there [as a secured creditor] other creditors will get nothing," he says.

Vouris says unsecured creditors include the Australian Tax Office, which is owed $800,000, Crane Contractors, which is owed $600,000, and Bright Ceiling Systems, which is owed $300,000.

"The director [of Nahas] blames the collapse on an adverse radio comment by a leading Sydney radio jock about union's involvement in Nahas and says that sent shockwaves through the company," he says.

"To me it is just another example of the dire straits of the building industry in NSW and Australia. We have seen a lot of failures recently, Reed and Southern Cross to name a few."

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