In a dramatic new twist, Queensland distributor Intermedia Computers has agreed to purchase the QLD IT trading name, goodwill, customer list, intellectual property, domain name and e-commerce software as the younger maverick company sinks into liquidation.
Intermedia managing director Ray Shaw told ARN that Intermedia has agreed to fulfill any outstanding warranty claims against QLD IT, providing appropriate documentation can be displayed.
"We have avoided buying the whole company, as there are still too many unknowns," Shaw said. "However, QLD IT had a good relationship with their channel partners and we intend to maintain those relationships."
According to Shaw, resellers will find it is "business as usual," as customers shift from one company to the other. The change over will be effective from December 1, 2000 when all communications directed towards QLD IT will be redirected to Intermedia's Milton (Brisbane) offices.
Shaw also confirmed that while he intends to maintain the distributor's customer base, QLD IT's Nintaus brand PCs will be discontinued under Intermedia direction.
"Intermedia is in a unique position to seamlessly honour all existing commitments to customers," Shaw said. "QLD IT's customers will receive the same prices, same goods, same terms and hopefully even better service from Intermedia."
Although Shaw is unsure of the fate of many former QLD IT staff, he has confirmed the QLD IT sales manager Les McLean has agreed to joined Intermedia.
"Les worked with Intermedia before joining QLD IT," Shaw said before praising McLean's customer relationship skills and describing him as "a real salt of the earth type of person".
Shaw also said that at this stage Intermedia's ability to fulfill the outstanding warranty claims for goods purchased in the 2000 calendar year depended on it being granted access to appropriate documentation on behalf of the administrator, Brisbane-based Knights Insolvency Administration.
Despite the Intermedia announcement, the fate of approximately 10 employees - not to mention unpaid debts totaling more than $3 million - remains uncertain.
Numerous industry pundits confirm the three year-old Queensland distributor finalised its operations yesterday when employees were informed the company - which was already in administration - was going into liquidation.
"As per usual employees are often the last to know," lamented one industry commentator.
Another said former QLD IT employees he had spoken to on Monday were "still in shock", and wondering if they would be paid their entitlements.
There is no official statement regarding the whereabouts of QLD IT founder Scott Matthews, although unconfirmed reports claim he has traveled to Thailand.
QLD IT was placed in the hands of administrators on November 13 after a Commonwealth Bank auditor questioned $400,000 worth of apparently invalid transactions.