Babcock and Brown Limited | Deloitte Australia | Insolvency matter

Case studies

Babcock and Brown Limited

Insolvency case information


Appointment type:

Voluntary administration


Appointment date:

13 March 2009



108 614 955



David Lombe






General enquiries
Sabrina Tran
Tel: +61 2 8260 4648

Media enquiries
Simon Rushton
Tel: +61 2 9322 5562


Related Links

Insolvency information sheets

Help for workers who have recently lost their jobs
Job Services Australia publication

Taking care of yourself after retrenchment or financial loss
Beyond Blue publication

Background information

Babcock & Brown Limited ("BBL") is the ultimate holding company of the Babcock & Brown Group. BBL is a shareholder of Babcock & Brown International Pty Limited ("BBIPL"), the intermediate holding company. All assets of the Group are held by BBIPL and its subsidiaries.

Deloitte Partners David Lombe and Simon Cathro were appointed Voluntary Administrators of Babcock & Brown Limited on 13 March 2009.

BBL's Second Meeting of Creditors was held on 24 August 2009 and creditors resolved for BBL to be wound up. David Lombe and Simon Cathro were appointed the Joint Liquidators pursuant to Section 446A of the Corporations Act 2001. Mr Cathro resigned as liquidator of BBL on 9 August 2011, and David Lombe is the sole Liquidator of BBL.

Summary update (November 2020)

Outstanding legal proceedings – Masters, Broome and Wilhelm proceedings

At the time of preparing our Annual Report to Creditors dated 27 September 2018 (2018 Annual Report), the Court had advised that judgment in the Masters, Broome and Wilhelm proceedings (MBW proceedings) would be delayed with Justice Foster unable to finalise his judgment due to serious illness.

Judgement in the MBW proceedings was handed down on 18 October 2019, with Justice Foster dismissing all three proceedings with costs in favour of the Liquidator. The plaintiffs lodged an appeal on 15 November 2019.

The appeal of the MBW proceedings is now scheduled to be heard in court in November 2020.

Outstanding legal proceedings – Pain proceedings

In late 2018, the litigation funder for the MBW proceedings commenced a completely new set of legal proceedings (Pain proceedings) following the Liquidator’s decision to reject a new tranche of shareholder proofs of debt forms which now make up the Pain proceeding received in October 2018.

As the arguments raised by the plaintiffs in the Pain proceedings share similarities with those in the MBW proceedings, we including the opposing counsel, agreed to adjourn the Pain proceedings until the outcome of the MBW proceedings are known. Given the plaintiffs have lodged an appeal in the MBW proceedings, the Pain proceedings have been adjourned, with no date fixed for any future hearings until the outcome of the appeal is determined

Estimated timeframe for completion

The next steps of determining what dividend is available to creditors, including noteholders, cannot be determined until both of the above sets of legal proceedings are finalised.

The Liquidation can be finalised in approximately thirteen (13) months following the completion of the MBW proceedings and the Pain proceedings. Given the delay in the MBW appeal proceedings from May 2020 until November 2020, we estimate the Liquidation can be finalised by December 2023. This is on the basis that we are successful in the MBW appeal proceedings (to be concluded within two (2) years), which may allow us to dispose of the Pain proceedings thereafter. This is contingent upon no further appeals lodged by the plaintiffs, and no further legal proceedings commenced against BBL.

Please note that the 2018 Annual Report was the last annual report to creditors and noteholders that we are required to issue pursuant to Section 508 of the Corporations Act 2001. The Insolvency Law Reform Act 2016, which came into effect on 1 September 2017, repealed annual reports in a liquidation.

As such, we will continue to update our website as and when new information comes to hand.

Separately, pursuant to section 70-5(6)(b) of the Insolvency Practice Schedule (Corporations) 2016, we provide notice that we have lodged our Annual Administration Return (Form 5602) with the Australian Securities & Investments Commission.

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact Sabrina Tran of the Liquidator’s office on the details above.