Australian winemakers count the cost following The Wine Society collapse

04 September, 2020

Australian winemakers look set to receive just $20,000 of the $2 million they are owed after The Wine Society plunged into administration.

Australia’s oldest wine club was in debt to 125 creditors when it collapsed, including Tyrell, Oatleys and Casella.

Creditors were initially promised 15 to 30 cents for each dollar they were owed. However, The Daily Telegraph reported that they would now receive just 1 to 2 cents on the dollar after the business was sold less than $1.4 million.

That means the biggest creditor, Tyrell, would receive just $18,000 to $36,000 of the $1.8 million it is owed.

Wine Industry Advisors Australasia, the company owned by the society’s former chairman, Robert Whitton, has claimed a debt of $400,000, according to The Daily Telegraph.

Administrators struck a deal to sell the wine club to Wine Collective Holdings, which has been running the society's day-to-day operations since 2016. It will take ownership of The Wine Society’s liquor licence, intellectual property and database of more than 20,000 members.

In December 2017, The Wine Society merged with Online Liquor Group, a deal that was heralded as creating the largest independent player in Australia’s online drinks industry. 

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