Kreab Gavin Anderson set to pay former employees half of their entitled superannuation

The company behind the ‘Kevin 07’ PR campaign, which shut its doors in December last year terminating its 14 remaining staff, will repay half of the $278,000 it owes employees in superannuation, administrator PKF has revealed.

When senior staff left Kreab Gavin Anderson late last year to start a competing agency, PKF advertised in the Australian Financial Review, seeking a buyer for the agency.

PFK managing partner Brad Tonks has rejected a report published in The Sydney Morning Herald last week which stated the company owed $1.8m in wages, superannuation and leave entitlements, telling Mumbrella “it was a very misleading figure” which was not consistent with reports which have been sent to staff and creditors to date.

“The figure that was quoted in the article about a week ago of $1.8m is a gross exaggeration,” he said.

“There is around about $278,000 in outstanding superannuation due to employees, through the liquidation process we’ve started a dividend process which will be complete in approximately the next six weeks.

“That’s likely to pay employees around half of their superannuation entitlements at the moment, the balance of that would be subject to further realisations in the liquidation as we collect outstanding [payments] due to Kreab from its former clients. In addition to that there’s also some leave entitlements due to employees.

“There’s a government safety net scheme in place called FEG (Fair Entitlements Guarantee) and at this stage I’d anticipate that employees will pick up most of what’s owing to them in relation to outstanding leave entitlements and any servicing entitlements through the FEG scheme.”

Despite allegations from a former employee, which claim her requests for information and clarity from Kreab have been “ignored”, Tonks said he would be surprised if any former employee had not already received communication from PFK about these plans.

“There has been a number of meetings and reports issued to employees to keep them abreast of where the liquidation is at, I’d be surprised if someone said they’d hadn’t received those.

“In fact if that hadn’t I’d urge them to come forward and contact us so we can make sure we’ve got the correct details on file for them,” he continued.

Speaking to Mumbrella, Nicole Miller, former office manager at Kreab Worldwide, somewhat disagreed with Tonks’ version of events, saying: “I can confirm that I have not received my outstanding superannuation payment from my time working at Kreab. With respect to correspondence from PKF, I have received one piece of communication from the firm in writing on 7 March, sometime after Kreab went into administration.

“The correspondence in question concerned PKF’s discovery that Kreab Australia was a foreign company registered in the Cayman Islands, a fact that made the appointment of administrators “defective” and required an application to the Federal Court to resolve. The application was to ratify the appointment of the administrators and their remuneration.

“No mention was made of staff superannuation or other entitlements in this correspondence,” she said.

Tonks said employees can expect to see payments once the prescribed process is complete

Speaking on behalf of Kreab, Tonks said former employees can expect to see some of these entitlements after the prescribed process has been complete – which is expected to be another six weeks.

“We are at the stage within the liquidation now where we have received sufficient money back that we can start to pay distributions back to employees on their outstanding entitlements. There is quite a prescriptive time frame for that.

“There’s quite a prescribed process for dealing with a distribution process and that takes two months to work through, that was started recently and there’d be about six weeks to go in that before we will actually be in a position to start to release those payments,” Tonks said.

Tonks also thanked those employees who stayed right until the end.

“We’ve had quite a good working relationship with the employees throughout the administration and liquidation process they assisted us with the trading on of business prior to Christmas, so as I said we’ve had a number of meetings and reports issued to those folk,” he said.

“So I thank all of those employees for their assistance to date. If there were any employees out there that felt like they were left out of the loop or wanted more information of the status of the liquidation process then I’d urge them to get into contact with us directly and we can answer any questions that they’ve got.”


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