Kennedy company put into administration
LUXURY watch reseller James Kennedy has lost control of one of his companies in the latest blow to the embattled high end retailer.
Administrators were appointed last week to his company EGI Audio Visual (Retail), with creditors to meet on Thursday at the offices of accountants Ferrier Hodgson.
EGI Audio Visual was the company that Kennedy used to sell luxury Bang & Olufsen televisions, speakers and headphones.
The Danish giant issued a $6 million debt demand from EGI Audio Visual in October.
The administration of EGI Audio Visual was the latest blow to Mr Kennedy, who has been battling with the loss of several luxury suppliers.
Exclusive watch brand Patek Phillipe severed its association at its Sydney outlet last month, fashion retailer Kenzo walked, and Bang & Olufsen split with Kennedy in September.
It comes after the Herald Sun's Page 13 column broke the story of the empire's woes, as well as the departure of the managing director Martin Rainer and the in-house marketing team.
The marketing team has been considering legal action after their phones were wiped when they lost their jobs, with precious family photos among the information lost.
The sponsor of The Oaks Day feature race told the Herald Sun on Sunday that EGI Audio Visual was placed into voluntary administration because it was no longer allowed to sell Bang & Olufsen products.
"Bang & Olufsen Denmark terminated the trade dealer agreement," he said.
"That ended on the 30th of September so we were not legally permitted to trade Bang & Olufsen products, we couldn't operate stores or use their trademarks."
The company closed seven Bang & Olufsen stores across the country, with some leases forced to be cut short.
"We are a creditor to that company like a lot of others," Mr Kennedy said.
He said the collapse of EGI Audio Visual did not impact on the watch division of the Kennedy group.
A notice on the Australian Securities and Investments Commission website confirmed the administration.
Mr Kennedy sued Bang & Olufsen in the Supreme Court this month, alleging that EGI Audi-Visual (Wholesale), the owner of the retail company, does not owe the Danish entertainment giant almost $6 million.
The companies had been in dispute about the amount owed over stock provided to the Kennedy group.