urgent lift capital in administration

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    Fresh collapse hits finance industryBy Michael Sainsbury
    April 11, 2008 11:57am
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    THE nation's financial sector has suffered a fresh blow with administrators appointed to boutique lending group Lift Capital.

    The appointment last night follows the $1.3 billion collapse of Melbourne stockbroker Opes Prime and continuing woes of another broking firm, Tricom.

    Tony McGrath and Joseph Hayes of corporate recovery and advisory firm McGrathNicol were appointed as voluntary administrators of Sydney-based Lift Capital Partners well as Lift Capital Nominees No 1.

    The scale of the latest collapse is not yet clear. Lift operates as a margin lender, with about 1600 clients owning investments predominantly in listed shares and managed funds.

    A secured creditor, understood to be Merrill Lynch, has a fixed charge over the listed shares secured against funds advanced to Lift Capital.

    But the administrators said it “is expected that a significant surplus of funds" will be available to Lift Capital once the secured creditor has been repaid.

    McGrathNicol said it was too early to speculate on the ultimate return to creditors and investors but the underlying value in the shares was good and it is expected that a reasonable return will be achieved.

    An investor information phone line will also be established during the course of the day, details of which will be available on the Lift Capital website.

    A meeting of creditors will be convened for April 22 and creditors will receive information about that meeting in the post in the coming days. A full update will be provided to creditors at that meeting.

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