EXCLUSIVE: Days after the collapse of Retravision Southern, Retravision WA is fighting legal battles on several fronts in the WAS Supreme Court in an effort to obtain money from former retailers who purchased goods via the West Australian buying group.In one case this month in the WA Supreme Court of Appeal, Master Sanderson ruled against Retravision WA claiming that the buying group overstated an amount of over $3 million dollars and that a prior judgement, which the group obtained against former South Australian retailers Dr Christopher and Janine Starrs who owned Truscotts in South Australia, was not valid.
The Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that a prior judgement obtained by Retravision WA was entered into in unusual circumstances because of an administrative error by the court
The Court heard that On 2 November 2009, Retravision WA commenced proceedings against consumer electronics and appliance retailers Dr Christopher and Janine Starrs who traded in South Australia as Truscotts. The business has since been placed into liquidation.
Retravision claimed that the Starrs owed them $3,141,011.92 under a former guarantee.
On 4 February 2010, Retravision WA obtained judgment against the Starrs in default of their appearance at a WA Court hearing.
The Starrs counter claimed, telling the Court that the judgment in default was irregular, as it overstated the amount that the Starrs claimed they owed to Retravision WA.
They also claimed that judgement was entered unreasonably and that the court, in the exercise of its discretion, should have also taken into account that they attempted to lodge an appearance and it was not accepted due to an administrative error by the court.
On 26 October 2009, Retravision served notice of default on the Starrs claiming that they pay Retravision WA, $3,141,011.92.
Master Sanderson varied the judgement to a claim of $2,811,511.92.
It is not known whether the Starrs will fight the claim.
In another case involving Retravision WA, the Supreme Court of WA heard that the WA buying group was in February 2012 looking to merge with Retravision Southern and Retravision Australia.
The case, involving a dispute over money owed by the Allmark Family Corporation who traded as Retravision Mirrabook in WA, heard that at one stage the Allmark Corporation owed Retravision in excess of $3.275 million, This was later reduced to $2 Million dollars.
During the case Retravision WA told the Court they were financially viable and that it was planned that ‘Retravision [will] merge, most likely with Retravision entities in other parts of Australia’.
During the past week Retravision WA has approached several Retravision Southern retailers in an effort to convince them to sign up with their WA buying operation.
On Friday Samsung, Sony and Whirlpool, recommenced supply relationships with Retravision WA and Retravision Northern after initially suspending their financial relationship with the two groups following Retravision Southern being placed into voluntary administration.
Retravision CEO Paul Holt said in an email to retailers “I am pleased to advise that both Whirlpool and Sony have removed the ‘on-hold’ positions they had taken and that their accounts are reopened with immediate effect”.
He added “Sony stock in transit will commence delivery from Friday morning. We are continuing to address supplier issues as they arise and will continue to resolve them as quickly as possible. As we work our way through current issues, please continue to draw stock from our warehouse and from suppliers that have continued to trade on an uninterrupted basis with us, including Samsung, Sony and Whirlpool who have re-established supply lines.”
The move comes as several appliance vendors report they have been approached directly by retailers to open up credit accounts. One small appliance retailer said that several former Retravision Southern retailers had offered to pay “using credit cards” as a form of financing.
It’s also been revealed that some of the Retravision Southern retailers are looking to form an alliance with the Narta buying group via the Betta Electrical Stores.
A Narta source said each individual Retravision store would have to prove their “credit credentials” if they were to become part of the Betta Electrical buying group.
It is not known whether the 100 former Retravision Southern stores who are allowed to purchase via the Betta Electrical Group will be rebranded as Betta Electrical.