Big Un’s founder claims $1.33 million in termination payments following the collapse of his business

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Big Un’s founder and former chief executive, Richard Evertz, is claiming $1.33 million in termination payments from the failed video content provider, but there might not be enough money from the collapse to pay him — let alone other creditors.

A mandatory report from the company’s directors to Big Un’s administrators states that the company had a negative cash balance just days before the company collapsed into administration last month.

Big Un developed video packages for small businesses which it claimed to sell for up to $12,000.

Mr Evertz has lodged a claim for $111,228.19 of holiday pay and a retrenchment payment totalling $1.22 million.

The administrators, led by Deloittes’ Neil Cussen, declined to comment on the validity of the claim.

“Director and employee matters are still under investigation,” said a spokesman for the administrators. “The administrators will have a position on these in coming weeks and will report to creditors ahead of the next creditor meeting.”

The company’s only asset with any value might be a $233,899 refund from the tax office, according to the report.

Big Un’s investment in its former subsidiary Big Review TV (BRT) was listed with an “unknown” realisable value, which means there is no valuable ascribed to the asset which Big Un spent $12.6 million developing.

One of the authors of the report to the administrators was Mr Evertz’s son, company co-founder Brandon Evertz.

Most of Big Un’s operations, and workforce, was housed in BRT. Its shares posted a ten-fold gain on the ASX last year on the back of financial reports to the ASX attesting to its strong revenue growth, and cash flows, from selling these promotional packages to business clients.

The stock was suspended from trading in February following reports that questioned the financial health of the business. It was the last time its shares would trade on the ASX.

The company finally lodged its December half-year results in July. It reported a $52 million loss and negative cash flows when new accounting standards forced the company to report actual revenue from clients rather than money forwarded by a “sponsor” before clients had even agreed to pay for the service.

There were also questions about the background of Richard Evertz who had been imprisoned in 1994 for blackmailing innocent men in public toilets by impersonating a police officer.

Mr Evertz resigned in May, the same day that Big Review TV was put into administration as part of a manoeuvre to restructure the business “and preserve value for shareholders of Big Un,” according to a statement to the ASX.

This article was originally published by the Sydney Morning Herald’s Business Day. Read the original here, or follow Business Day on Facebook.

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