ASIC disqualifies construction industry director for five years

ASIC has disqualified industry director Joshua Ian Ridley of Helensvale QLD, from managing corporations for the maximum period of five years due to his involvement in the failure of six companies.

Between April 2009 and November 2021, Mr Ridley acted as the director of six companies that operated in the construction industry:

  • Disco Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN 608 310 390);
  • Tiger Trac Pty Ltd (ACN 137 633 357);
  • Dalrimple Investments Pty Ltd (ACN 139 036 712);
  • Rocor Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN 135 727 267);
  • CTE (Aust) Pty Ltd (ACN 135 308 495); and
  • Tiger Mech Pty Ltd (ACN 141 831 601).

ASIC found that Mr Ridley acted improperly and failed to meet his obligations as director when he:

  • failed to ensure that Disco Holdings, Tiger Trac, Rocor Holdings, CTE (Aust) and Tiger Mech paid their statutory debts to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO);
  • failed to ensure Disco Holdings and Tiger Trac complied with their ATO lodgement obligations;
  • iImproperly used his position as the director of Disco Holdings by disposing of assets, equipment and vehicles in circumstances where the proceeds for those disposals were not properly accounted for, and by personally receiving the proceeds of the sale;
  • failed to ensure that Disco Holding’s books and records accurately and transparently reflected ownership of its assets, their disposal and the receipt of sale proceeds;
  • improperly used his position as the director of Tiger Trac by transferring assets to a related company where there was no evidence of full consideration being paid, and transferring funds to related parties where there was insufficient evidence of a proper basis for such transfers;
  • allowed Disco Holdings and Tiger Trac to continue incurring debts where there were reasonable grounds for suspecting they were insolvent;
  • failed to ensure that the financial records of Disco Holdings and Tiger Trac correctly recorded and explained their transactions, financial position and performance, and would not enable true and fair financial statements to be prepared and audited; and
  • continued to manage Disco Holdings whilst he was disqualified from managing corporations contrary to s206A of the Corporations Act.

At the time of ASIC’s decision, the companies owed a combined total of $7,144,033 to creditors, including $2,991,983 owing to the Australian Taxation Office.

In disqualifying Mr Ridley, ASIC relied on supplementary reports lodged by Disco Holding’s liquidators, Joanne Dunn and Kelly Trenfield of FTI Consulting, and Tiger Trac’s liquidator, Greg Dudley of RSM. ASIC assisted Ms Dunn, Ms Trenfield and Mr Dudley to prepare their reports by providing funding from the Assetless Administration Fund.

Mr Ridley is disqualified from managing corporations until 20 June 2027.

Mr Ridley has the right to seek a review of ASIC’s decision by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Background

Section 206F of the Corporations Act allows ASIC to disqualify a person from managing corporations for a maximum period of five years if, within a seven year period, the person was an officer of two or more companies, and those companies were wound up and a liquidator provides a report to ASIC about each of the company’s inability to pay its debts.

ASIC maintains a banned and disqualified persons register that provides information about people who have been disqualified from:

  • involvement in the management of a corporation;
  • auditing self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs); or
  • practising in the financial services or credit industry.

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