Chameleon sinks, new company rises

Krico, parent company of Queensland print outfit Chameleon Group is in liquidation, but a new company Chameleon Group Australia Pty Ltd is now trading.

The sole owner of the new company is Emma Van Der Pluym, the long term partner of Chameleon Group CEO and banned company director Chris Krieger, who is the son of the owner of Krico, Kevin Krieger.

Van Der Pluym was an admin worker at Chameleon Group. The new company was established in October last year. Krico was founded in 2003.

Owner Kevin Krieger placed Krico in liquidation last week, just days after the company laid off 13 staff at its Bundaberg and Hervey Bay sites.

The liquidated business Krico has $3 in hand, with a $1.07m debt to the ATO, and has $158,000 in payroll tax owing. In addition there are various unpaid staff liabilities with some staff claim they have not been paid super for three years. The liquidators are now writing to other creditors.

[Related: STS into liquidation]

Chameleon Group CEO Chris Krieger was banned from being a director for six years after a 2013 conviction for 2010 insurance fraud when he tried to claim a printer was damaged in a fire, when in fact it did not exist. He received a 12 month suspended jail sentence for his efforts. The insurance company did not pay any part of his claim, despite the fire causing more than $1m in damages.

The Group – which included The Sticker Co – had been on an acquisition spree in the last few years, buying McTaggarts and Digital Powerhouse in 2014, H & H signs in Bundaberg in 2015, and the next year it bought SignTec in Maryborough. Its last acquisition was Innovation Graphix in Hervey Bay in 2017. It also owned Rockhampton Printing Services.

Krico’s liquidation is being handled by de Vries Tayeh.

Troy Graham of de Vries Tayeh says, “We were only appointed as liquidators last week, we are still trying to get our heads around the situation. We are investigating and looking at why the company is in the position it is, we will report our evaluations to the creditors, and in due time we will make a decision about where to go from here.”

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