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The latest business news on ASIC, EML, Galilee, Lavo, Edify, Intega, AnteoTech, Red River, Thalanga, Collection House, Morgans, NEXTDC, Ballymore, Wagners, Fortescue, Committee for Brisbane, Fiji Kava, Terracom, Aurizon, ASIC

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Director banned for five years

ASIC has disqualified Giatano Barbera, of Bargara, Queensland, from managing corporations for five years for his involvement in nine failed companies that owed unsecured creditors $53 million.

The ATO was owed at least $3 million, according to ASIC.

Barbera was a director of nine companies which entered liquidation between 2012 and 2018.

ASIC found that Barbera allowed Barbera Transport to trade whilst insolvent; failed to ensure that the companies paid their taxation liabilities, superannuation and payroll tax; and failed to ensure that the companies kept proper records.

Barbera is disqualified from managing corporations until November 2026.

EML gets the all clear

Shares in the Brisbane based card payment system company EML soared 20 per cent today after the Central Bank of Ireland granted a reprieve to its PFS Card Services subsidiary to sign new customers.

The central bank had previously raised concerns about PFS and the potential for money laundering, but the company said it was confident it could work within the bank’s guidelines.

There would not be any broad based reductions in limit controls, but the central banks said it intended a limit would be imposed on PCSIL’s material growth for 12 months but could be rescinded earlier following confirmation the remediation plan had been effectively implemented.

New MD at Galilee

David Casey has been appointed managing director at Galilee Energy.

He has previously worked at a senior level in companies like Eastern Star Gas. He was also the author of the Galilee’s original scoping study for the Glenaras project.

Interim managing director David King will hand over to Casey on December 1 and will retire after eight years with the company.

Hydrogen debut at Springfield

Greater Springfield will soon be home to Australia’s first hydrogen fuel cell manufacturing facility.

Australian energy technology company LAVO Hydrogen Technology Limited will establish the $15 million facility, backed by the Palaszczuk Government.

Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick said construction of the new facility will begin in early 2022 and was expected to be delivered by the end of the year.

“This is one of the first projects to receive support through our Invested in Queensland program, and the jobs to come from this are significant,” he said.

“Up to 200 construction jobs will be created over the next 12 months, and once fuel cell production ramps up there will be almost 170 operational jobs supported here by 2026.”

 Edify gets port deal

The State Government said Townsville’s bid to become a renewable hydrogen powerhouse had been strengthened with the signing of another Memorandum of Understanding  to investigate the process and feasibility of exporting hydrogen through the city’s port.

The Port of Townsville and Edify Energy signed the MoU to work together to advance Edify’s renewable hydrogen export project.

The signing of the MoU follows Edify’s recent development approval to build and operate a renewable hydrogen production plant with up to 1GW electrolyser for 5,000 – 150,000 of  tonnes a year of renewable hydrogen at the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct, 46km south of Townsville.

 Ellume deal settled

Nov 25: AnteoTech has renewed its contract with leading healthcare diagnostic partner Ellume for the supply of AnteoBind to be used in Ellume’s range of testing equipment.

Ellume is an Australia-based diagnostics company that develops, manufactures and commercialises high-performance connected products for health professionals and consumers. Most recently, Ellume became the first over-the-counter fully at-home diagnostic test for COVID-19 to be granted authorisation from the US Food and Drug Administration. This test utilises AnteoTech’s unique AnteoBind technology.

AnteoTech and Ellume have been in partnership since 2016, and the company said the contract renewal highlighted the strong relationship between the two companies. The terms of the contract are commercial-in-confidence and reflect the commercial positions of both companies having undergone significant transformation over the past five years

FIRB approval for takeover

Nov 24: Intega said he had received formal advice from the Foreign Investment Review Board that there was no objection by Kiwa.

The approval was one of the key conditions of the takeover. It must also get shareholder approval at a meeting on December 6.

Red River hit for $20m

Nov 23: A royalty dispute between Red River and Thalanga Copper Mines has been resolved in the courts with Red River ordered to pay $20 million payable in 28 days.

The dispute related to royalties inherited by Red River subsidiary Cromarty Resources when it bought the Thalanga copper mine in north Queensland in 2014.

Red River has already placed $10 million in a trust account and the board has been given the task of finding out how it will pay the remaining $10 million. It has an undrawn $US15 million debt facility which may be used.

Knox walks away from Collection House

Nov 23: Morgans economist Michael Knox has resigned from the board of Collection House after four years.

The reason for his departure was that he wanted to pursue personal commitments.

Knox has been with Morgans since 1988.

NEXTDC takes equity stake

Nov 22: Data centre developer NEXTDC will take a 19.99 per cent stake in Sovereign Cloud through a placement and equity raising.

Sovereign has a target of $35 million which will be used to developer new cloud platforms in Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide as well as growth projects and working capital.

NEXTDC managing director Craig Scroggie said his company had an in-depth understanding of the cloud market dynamics. He said Sovereign was well placed to benefit from the increasing trend towards sovereign IaaS cloud and high security solutions.

Ballymore secures Ravenswood

Nov 19: Ballymore Resources said it had secured the 49 per cent of the Ravenswood gold project that it didn’t already own.

The company said it had secured the rights in a deal with AvtivEx which would include issuing 2 million of Ballymore shares to ActiveEx.

Drink up, kava gets green light

Nov 18: Brisbane based FijiKava said the Federal Government had approved the importation of drinking kava and it was now working with distributors and customers to be the first to offer retail products in Australia.

Customers would be able to order drinking kava at its website from today.

The company said products should be available in retail outlets early next year.

Wagners scores haulage contract

Nov 18: Wagners said it had won the haulage contract for Glencore’s McArthur River mine in the Northern Territory.

Wagners said the revenue from the contract was expected to be about $33 million but could vary depending on production.

The revenue will fall mostly in the 2023-24 years.

GC tourism boss steps down

Nov 18: Following 17 years in the role, Destination Gold Coast chairman Paul Donovan has announced his intention to step down at this year’s Annual General Meeting. Appointed as chairman in 2004,  Donovan had overseen Gold Coast tourism through the Global Financial Crisis to the highs of the 2018 Commonwealth Games and record visitor numbers in 2019, securing of major new air routes, expansion of the Chinese tourist market and more recently to navigate the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19.–

Gladstone hydrogen project gets a tick

Nov 17: Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest’s Fortescue Future Industries has gained planning approval to build one of the world’s largest hydrogen equipment manufacturing facilities in Gladstone.

Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development Steven Miles said the approval would allow FFI to progress plans for constructing the facility in the Gladstone State Development Area (SDA).

“FFI now has the planning approval required to progress the $114 million first stage of its Global Green Energy Manufacturing Centre (GEM) at Aldoga in the Gladstone SDA,” Miles said.

“In its initial stage, this $114 million investment from Fortescue Future Industries will create more than 100 construction jobs and 50 operational jobs.”

 Eagers tips profit to double

Nov 17: Eagers Automotive said it expected underlying operating profit before tax for the 2021 year to be between $390 million and $395 million, almost double the 2020 result.

On a statutory pre-tax basis it expected a result of between $440 million and $445 million.

Eagers said Covid restrictions meant it was impacted for 114 trading days during the year and as much as 35 per cent of the company was affected by lockdown conditions at any one time.

That would impact its underlying earnings by as much as $25 million, it said.

The Queensland and West Australian markets performed well.

Blair Athol boosted

Nov 17: Terracom said EBITDA for October from the Blair Athol coal mine in central Queensland $19.5 million.

It said coal sales for the December quarter were expected to be 575,000 tonnes and operating EBITDA $70 million.

In October, coal sales were at $213 a tonne.

Aurizon downgraded

Nov 17: RBC Capital Markets has downgraded Aurizon to “underperform” following the company’s decision to buy One Rail.

RBC said the deal would mean Aurizon would become a “forced seller” of One Rail’s “unwanted” east coast rail asset which transports coal.

RBC said the diversification benefit from the One Rail deal was minor and selling the coal exposed rail business would face a lack of investor interest. Aurizon has said it would demerge the asset if it was unable to sell it.

FijiKava to double output

Nov 17: FijiKava’s wholly owned subsidiary South Pacific Elixirs has started works on the double the output of kava extract at its facility in Levuka, Fiji.

The project will take five months and will address bottlenecks in production and also allow for higher value, lower moisture content extracts.

Gold Coast exec penalised for insider trading

Following action from ASIC, Paradise Waters executive Gregory Campbell was been sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment, to be released immediately upon his own recognizance in the sum of $10,000, and a fine of $10,000 for one count of insider trading in the shares of Pulse Health.

Campbell was also ordered to pay a pecuniary penalty order of $31,996 representing the profits made from his offence.

ASIC’s case was that on or around October 19, 2016, Campbell received information about a potential deal with Pulse. He understood this to mean that Healthe Care had reached an in principle agreement to acquire a substantial shareholding in Pulse. He then purchased 392,257 shares in Pulse for a total value of $127,384.26.

ASIC said that on October 20, 2016, Pulse entered a trading halt and announced that it had received a non-binding, indicative offer from Healthe Care to acquire all of its shares for a cash price of 47 cents a share. When trading re-opened on 21 October 2016, Campbell sold his shares in Pulse, resulting in a profit of $31,996.

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