Updated: Award winning digital agency goes into voluntary liquidation
DLSHS (pronounced Delicious) won best social media campaign at last year’s AIMIA awards for its work on promoting independent film The Tunnel.
DLSHS Pty has called in liquidator Murray Godfrey from RMG Partners. The company’s shareholders voted on September 27 to voluntarily wind up the company. It appear to have changed its name to Forward Digital Media Agency Pacific Pty in recent days.
It is unclear whether somebody has bought the DLSHS name or other assets. (Update: A statement to Mumbrella states: “The acquisition of the DLSHS name is currently under negotiation.”)
The DLSHS website is still live, although the telephone today remained unanswered.
Agency boss Ahmed Salama did not return Mumbrella’s calls by the time of publication. At the time of posting, RMG partners had not responded to Mumbrella’s questions.
DLSHS launched a specialised film marketing division in February 2010 promising to offer Australian producers “unprecedented advertising and marketing techniques typically employed by big agencies and major brands”. Previous projects the agency worked on included promoting films such as The Combination, Cedar Boys and Acolytes.
In November last year, Salama and colleague Valeria Petrenko announced they would be launching an online film platform for independent producers called eCut. They said it would launch in early 2012 although at present the eCut site is a holding page.
(Update: Salama said in a statement: “eCut is an independent venture not dependent upon DLSHS. The eCut project continues development, for an updated anticipated launch date to be announced.”)
Salama is also a co-producer on the documentary Stand In My Shoes. (Update: He said in a statement: “All film projects associated with DLSHS or its directors remain independent of the company.”)
The largest unsecured creditor listed by the liquidator is the Australian Taxation Office which is owed $48,500.
Also on the list are Telstra, ASIC and ANZ bank. Salama and Petrenko are listed as being owed $3,500 each.
Declaration of interest: Mumbrella’s parent company Focal Attractions was among those owed money by the agency with an unpaid bill of $1,000 dating back to June 2010. (Update: This payment has reached us since publication of this article. Salama says the payment was always intended to be made and that the timing of its arrival was not linked to publication of this article.)
“Naturally, we are saddened by having to take this course of action with the company. In 2009, we launched our start-up with a vision to revitalise and reinvigorate the Australian independent cinema landscape by creating innovative ways of engaging with Australian audiences. Part of our core passion was, and still remains, to support home grown content using our acquired knowledge and skills to help emerging film-makers successfully launch their projects.
“During our journey, we have had the privilege of supporting and successfully launching some of Australia’s most innovative independent films and helped launch Australia’s first national film festival dedicated to championing domestic content on the big screen.
“Due to slow growth in domestic film development and distribution and a generally difficult economic climate for the industry across the board, we have had to carry the weight of some project’s development for significant lengths of time, making it unsustainable to continue operating the agency in its current form.
“This has given us an opportunity to reflect on our future endeavors and we plan to adapt our business model, including focusing on future innovative projects.
“We thank all of our supporters, partners and clients for the encouragement and support during this time and for allowing us to share your passion and creativity.”