Liquidated Whale Oil company owes more than half a million dollars

The liquidator of Social Media Consultants has already issued her first report. While total debts are unknown (including the bank and IRD) Sundry Creditors total $519,625, and there’s another $146,361 owed to the shareholder Current Account, and subscribers with an estimated $5,000 paid in advance.

Most of the sundry creditors are likely to be lawyers bills and court awarded costs in several defamation proceedings Cameron Slater and Social media Consultants Limited remain embroiled in.

The only assets apart from $856 in the bank and $4,538 debtors are Intangibles – listed as blog, domain name and IP.

 

Slater’s stroke may have had some impact on ongoing income, but his legal costs must have had most impact. he was hit with several expensive legal whammies in the weeks just before and after he had his stroke.

$5,000 doesn’t sound a lot for 300+ subscribers. perhaps most of them are only paying monthly. That would be a prudent approach at this stage.

Who would be interested in buying Whale Oil?

It’s difficult to know what the blog and website address would be worth. It would hardly be a going concern, and it could be an expensive hobby.

The liquidator states that a priority is obtaining a legal opinion on “the ability to sell the blog which contains personal information that may be subject to legal proceedings in the future”. It could be a big job checking the vast content still online for legal risks.

There might be most value from someone who had an interest in buying Whale Oil to shut the blog down and scrap all contents. That would be a huge fall from the heights it reached five years ago. Dirty Politics probably precipitated the fall, but the ongoing legal issues ended up being the most damaging.

Slater has ruled himself out of involvement in the blog, and it’s difficult to see how the current sole shareholder, Juana Atkins, can continue there either. Atkins has done a huge job reorganising and running Whale Oil over the last few months, but she may not see much for her efforts.

NZ Herald:  Whale Oil company owes more than $670,000 – liquidator

I can find no sign of this news on Whale Oil, nor of the company going into liquidation earlier in the week.

They are still advertising subscriptions and meat. They have shuffled things to different companies, but this must be a but suspect, especially the subscriptions.

Whale Oil company put into liquidation after rearrangements

Social Media Consultants Limited, the company that until recently was the owner of the Whale Oil blog, has been put into liquidation.

Last month Cameron Slater’s shares were transferred to his wife Juana Atkins, who became sole shareholder and director (she had been joint owner and director until then.

Soon after that Slater filed for bankruptcy.

Also last month the website registration for whaleoil.co.nz was transferred to a new company WOBH Limited, owned by an accountant associated with Slater.

Yesterday a liquidator was appointed for Social Media Consultants Limited

Stuff:  Whale Oil company previously owned by Cameron Slater goes into liquidation

The company that owned the controversial blog Whale Oil has been put into liquidation.

Social Media Consultants Limited, which was previously owned by Cameron Slater, was put into voluntary liquidation on Monday, by his wife and sole shareholder Juana Mary Atkins.

Slater vacated as a shareholder of the company in February. Another company was set up called Wobh Ltd. under Atkins’ name at the same time.

That’s not accurate. Timeline

  • 1 February 2019 (filed 22 February 2019)
    – Cameron Slater ceased director of Social Media Consultants Limited
    – Cameron Slater removed shareholder Social Media Consultants Limited
  • 13 February 2019
    – shareholder for MADAS 114 Limited recorded as Howard Karl Taylor, Accountant
    – directors details for MADAS 114 Limited recorded as Howard Karl Taylor, Accountant
    – new company incorporation MADAS 114 Limited, registered office Howard Karl Taylor
  • 22 February 2019
    – Cameron Slater ceased shareholder of Social Media Consultants Limited
    – Juana Atkins sole shareholder of Social Media Consultants Limited
  • 25 February 2019
    – registration of website whaleoil.co.nz changed from Social Media Consultants Limited to WOBH Limited
    – new company MADAS 116 Limited: shareholder and director Howard Karl Taylor
  • 26 February 2019
    – company name changed from MADAS 114 Limited to WOBH Limited
    – company name changed from MADAS 116 Limited to Whale Meat Company Limited
    – Whale Oil website announces “Ongoing medical tests following Cam’s stroke have shown that he remains severely incapacitated and consequently is unable to work…This has led Cam to make the very difficult decision to declare bankruptcy”
  • 27 February 2019
    – Cameron Slater files for bankruptcy
  • 5 March 2019
    – Juana Mary Atkins appointed new director of WOBH Limited
    – Juana Mary Atkins appointed new director of Whale Meat Company Limited
  • 24 March 2019
    – new shareholder of WOBH Limited: Juana Mary Atkins
    – removed shareholder of WOBH Limited: Howard Karl Taylor
    – new shareholder of Whale Meat Company Limited: Juana Mary Atkins
    – removed shareholder of Whale Meat Company Limited: Howard Karl Taylor
  • 25 March 2019
    – appointment of liquidator to Social Media Consultants Limited

The above details are from the companies website as of today. I’m fairly sure that that company history and documentation has been changed, I checked companies last month and I saw no mention of MADAS Limited.

I suspect some of those arrangements and rearrangements will be checked out.

Stuff:

It is not clear what the move means for the future of the site, which was still active on Tuesday.

I have seen no mention of any of this over the past two months on the Whale Oil website

Slater officially bankrupt, Whale Oil, Whale Meat ownership changes

On Tuesday at 8:00 am Whale Oil announced that legal costs had led Cameron Slater “to make the very difficult decision to declare bankruptcy, since he is unable to generate enough passive revenue to fund the three extremely expensive and in his opinion, vexatious, defamation actions against him.”

Slater has followed through on this, with it being adjudicated yesterday on his own petition.

Estate Details
Insolvency Type   Adjudicated bankrupt on debtor’s application under S.47
Estate Number   891053
Name   SLATER, Cameron John
Month & Year of Birth   November 1968
Alternate Names   SLATER, Cameron John Dalley
Supplied Address  
Insolvency Status   Current Bankrupt
Adjudication Date/Time   27-Feb-2019 14:20
Occupation at Adjudication   Unemployed
Multiple Insolvencies   No
Petition Type   Debtor Petition

Bankruptcy can be tough, but it can also be a relief to have someone else (the Official Assignee) dealing with your financial problems.

A comment at The Standard yesterday from Redbaiter:

Among all the commentary on this event, there is little information on blogs or in the MSM on how the bankruptcy will effect the Whaleoil blog and its subscribers,

My understanding is that if someone becomes bankrupt then the official assignee takes over all of their affairs. The idea is to ascertain what revenue is available for the creditors.

One assumes the blog is a business, with revenue from subscription and advertising, and it also has some connection with the Whaleoil Meat Company.

So will this “business” be henceforth run by an Administrator appointed by the Official Assignee, and/ or will it be closed down as a loss making enterprise & therefore of no value to creditors?

If it is deemed of value, could it be sold off?

Would guess Slater’s legal team will have done what they could to minimise the effects of his bankruptcy on the blog, but IIRC, the OA can look at what happened in the recent past and reverse any actions taken to hide assets away.

People who have subscriptions to the blog, or are considering renewing them need answers to these questions. Same goes for meat purchasers.

Good points. Readers of Whale Oil don’t appear to have been informed about the implications of the bankruptcy. They were still advertising for subscriptions and trying to sell meat yesterday and again today.

Ownership of various things could take a while to sort out. There have been a number of changes over the last couple of months.

Social Media Consultants Limited

On 22 February 2019 documents were filed with the Companies Register removing Slater as a director and shareholder of Social Media Consultants Limited, effective 1 February 2019.

Juana Atkins (Slater’s wife and apparent manager of the Whale Oil blog, is now sole director and shareholder.

The registered office is shown as Howard K TAYLOR – ACCOUNTANT.

Social Media Consultants Limited is named as second defendant in the Blomfield v Slater defamation. In October a court found that Slater and Social Media Consultants Limited had no credible defence – see What Whale Oil isn’t telling their readers

Whale Meat Company Limited

http://app.companiesoffice.govt.nz/co/7292558

In advertising last year the Whale Oil meat selling venture was described at Whale Meat Company.

On 25 February 2019 Whale Meat Company Limited was registered. Incorporation date 25 February 2019.

Sole director and shareholder is Howard Karl TAYLOR.

From The Whale Meat Company website About:

Whale Meat became a reality when Cam tapped some of his many contacts to help supply meat, set up and run The Whale Meat Company.

You can take advantage of the buying power of Cam and the Oilers and enjoy restaurant quality meat delivered to you, by buying the pack that suits you, when it suits you.

The impression there is that Cam was instrumental in setting up and running the company.

WOHB Limited

http://app.companiesoffice.govt.nz/co/7271736

On 13 February  2019 WOBH Limited was registered, Incorporation date: 13 Feb 2019

Sole director and shareholder Howard Karl TAYLOR.

whaleoil.co.nz

https://www.dnc.org.nz/whois/search?domain_name=whaleoil.co.nz

The domain name was first registered on 2 November 2005.

It was last modified 25 February 2019 11:00 pm

Registrant name: WOBH Limited

However the address remains as Slater’s address, and the contact is sb at whaleoil – aka ‘spanish bride’ and Juana Atkins, Slater’s wife.

I expect that the Official Assignee will be looking at some of these ownership changes.

I’m not sure that these various ownership switches are a good way of reducing Slater’s stress.