Printing consumables distributor, Phoenix Toner, has ceased trading effective immediately.
General manager, Don Bentley, confirmed the decision was made by owner, Mory Khadem, to close the business on October 29. Its 35 employees were informed at a meeting at 3pm, and the doors closed at 5pm.
The news comes just days after the company cut ties with tier-one vendor partner, HP. At the time, Bentley told ARN the decision was driven by cost considerations, but said Phoenix was planning to continue working with its remaining vendors including Kyocera, Brother, Canon, Oki and Epson.
Khadem is expected to appoint administrators to wind up the business shortly. Bentley said he was “slightly guttered” by the news, but admitted Khadem had been looking to exit the business for some time. He also expressed disappointment of behalf of the 35 staff, who are now looking for new jobs.
“It has been a fairly tough year this year,” Bentley told ARN. “Mory told us he wanted to close the doors when we can still cover all debts and staff entitlements and he can walk away in peace.”
Aggressive competition from rival distributors including Ingram Micro and Synnex was also putting pressure on Phoenix, he said.
Brother channel manager, Kim Ward, expressed surprise at the news and confirmed the vendor would be one of Phoenix’s creditors. Others are believed to include Lexmark and Kyocera.
Phoenix Toner opened in 1984 and is headquartered in Sydney. It maintains offices in Melbourne and Perth but closed its Adelaide branch several weeks ago.