Halifax Investment Services Pty Ltd
Halifax Investment Services Pty Ltd (Halifax), was a financial services licensee headquartered in Sydney with a partially-owned subsidiary in Auckland, New Zealand.
On 23 November 2018, Morgan Kelly, Stewart McCallum and Phil Quinlan of Ferrier Hodgson were appointed as joint and several voluntary administrators of Halifax.
What is voluntary administration and liquidation?
Voluntary administration is where the directors of a financially troubled company or a secured creditor with a charge over most of the company’s assets appoint an external administrator called a ‘voluntary administrator’.
The role of the voluntary administrator is to investigate the company’s business, property, affairs and financial circumstances, to report to creditors and to recommend to creditors whether the company should enter into a deed of company arrangement, go into liquidation or be returned to the directors.
Another responsibility of the voluntary administrator is to report to ASIC on possible offences by people involved with the company. If breaches are reported, ASIC will assess the reports to consider its own investigations and action, if any.
Liquidation is where:
- the creditors of a company vote for liquidation following a voluntary administration;
- an insolvent company’s shareholders resolve to liquidate the company and appoint a liquidator; or
- the court appoints a liquidator to wind up a company following an application, usually by a creditor.
It is possible for a company in liquidation to also be in receivership.
The purpose of liquidation of an insolvent company is to have an independent and suitably qualified person (the liquidator) take control of the company so that its affairs can be wound up in an orderly and fair way for the benefit of all creditors.
If a liquidator suspects that people involved with the company may have committed offences and the liquidator reports this to ASIC, the liquidator may also be able to apply to ASIC for funding to carry out further investigations into the allegations.
ASIC notes that Halifax is a financial services licensee and is authorised under its licence to issue and make a market in derivatives and FX.
ASIC is in close contact with Ferrier Hodgson as the voluntary administrator.
ASIC will consider further the circumstances surrounding the voluntary administration, particularly those concerning compliance with financial services laws.
Under the law, including the Corporations Act, licensees must keep client money separate from their own. This is an important safeguard to protect the interests of retail investors.
Client money must be adequately protected.
Help for investors
Investors seeking information should contact:
Link Market Services
Phone: 1300 910 051 or +61 1300 910 051 (if overseas)
For information to assist you if your investment has been adversely affected, please visit Problems with your investments on ASIC’s MoneySmart website.
For any tax-related questions or concerns, please contact the Australian Taxation Office on 131 020.
Trouble with debt
The Trouble with debt page on our MoneySmart website also has information to assist you if you are experiencing problems with debt and cash flow.