ASIC investigation into Metigy as David Fairfull goes bankrupt

Chris Pash
By Chris Pash | 23 November 2022
David Fairfull. File photo

The returns to creditors from Australian startup Metigy look thin, with staff entitlements now being paid via a federal government scheme, as the corporate regulator ASIC investigates suspected insolvent trading. 

The now collapsed machine-led marketing platform owed an estimated $32,366,606.84, according to the liquidators in documents filed to ASIC.

The liquidators are stil to sell two properties owned by Metigy founder David Fairfull for which he used a $7.7 million loan from the company to purchase.

Fairfull went bankrupt this month, according to the National Personal Insolvency Index. Records show this is his second run at bankruptcy. His first was 2006-2009.

A meeting of creditors this week was told that liquidators Simon Cathro and Andrew Blundell of Cathro Partners are continuing to assist corporate regulator ASIC in its investigations.

The liquidators are now using the Fair Entitlements Guarantee Scheme (FEG), a legislative safety net scheme of last resort, to pay various employee entitlements.

So far, these payments have totalled $1.3 million. However, there are additional claims made by employees.

The sale of the two properties -- one in Sydney’s upmarket Mosman and the other in Kangaroo Valley, in regional NSW -- were scheduled for December 6 and 8.

Blundell told the meeting of creditors that it appears that those two properties were bought towards the top of the market.

And that the realisable value may be less than what was paid for them.

Previous reports to creditors estimated the value of properties: 2 Sirius Avenue, Mosman NSW - $10,500,000; 741 Wattamolla Road, Wattamolla NSW $7,700,000.

But the combined mortgages of $12,740,000 left possible equity of $3,760,000.

“The Liquidators had written to the mortgagee on numerous occasions and despite numerous requests, they had not been provided any details relating to their costs incurred or the expected realisation amounts,” according to minutes of the meeting.

Previous reports from Cathro and Blundell of Cathro Partners show Metigy relied almost entirely on capital injections to run its business.

Part of a $20 million capital raise last year -- led by Cygnet Capital and including Regal Funds Management, OC Funds and Five V Venture Capital -- to expand the business then became a loan used to buy personal property.

The 2015 startup apparently didn’t lodge business activity statements, didn’t create formal financial statements and nor did it appear to lodge tax returns.

The report to creditors from Cathro & Partners: “From our investigations to date, it appears as though the Metigy Group didn’t ever reach a cash flow positive trading position.

“During the year prior to our appointment, Metigy raised capital of more than $20 million from various investors which appears to have been used to service the day-to-day trading requirements of the group entities and a loan to the director which was used to purchase personal property assets.”

Seventy-five staff lost their jobs when the company went into voluntary administration in July.

The investigation report: “Metigy does not appear to have earned any revenue since its inception.”

Have something to say on this? Share your views in the comments section below. Or if you have a news story or tip-off, drop us a line at

Sign up to the AdNews newsletter, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for breaking stories and campaigns throughout the day.

comments powered by Disqus