MFS Octaviar class action against accounting firm KPMG settled

MFS Octaviar class action against accounting firm KPMG settled
MFS Octaviar class action against accounting firm KPMG settled

A class action by 2000 small MFS Octaviar unitholders against auditing and accounting firm KPMG has been settled out of court for a reported $20 million plus.

Unitholders in the Premium Income Fund, an offshoot of Gold Coast-based finance, property and tourism group MFS, also known as Octaviar, brought the case against KPMG.

KPMG was the managed investment scheme’s compliance plan auditor.

MFS collapsed in early 2008 owing about $3 billion.

MFS Ltd was a publicly listed company with interests in financial services, travel and leisure and child care businesses.

MFSIM was an unlisted public company and wholly owned subsidiary of MFS Ltd (now in Liquidation).

MFSIM was the responsible entity for six unlisted managed investment schemes, including the PIF and the Maximum Yield Fund (‘MYF’).

In late 2009 ASIC commenced its own civil proceedings in the Supreme Court of Queensland against MFS Investment Management Ltd and four former officers and one manager of MFSIM.

The proceedings relate to the use of $147.5 million in funds of the Premium Income Fund (PIF), for which MFSIM was the responsible entity at the relevant time. 

In taking this action, ASIC stated it was addressing the core obligations of a responsible entity and its directors and officers to operate the fund with care and diligence, and in the best interest of the fund’s members.

From November 2013 to December 2013, the trial was part-heard before Justice Douglas with further trial hearings in April 2014 and May 2014 and further hearings scheduled for August 2014.

Earlier this month the Law360, New York website reported Octaviar Administration Pty Ltd won Chapter 15 recognition in a New York bankruptcy court, six months after the Second Circuit overturned an earlier order granting the relief.

Over the objections of Drawbridge Special Opportunities Fund LP, a hedge fund managed by Fortress Investment Group LLC, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley C. Chapman found that Octaviar meets the provision of the Bankruptcy Code requiring debtors to prove that they have property or a place of business in the U.S.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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