George Calombaris is caught in a new debt scandal in which yogurt chain Yo-Chi owes $ 140,000 to MAdE
George Calombaris’ up-market yogurt chain reportedly refuses to repay a $ 140,000 loan, throwing the celebrity chef into a new debt crisis.
The scandal comes after the former EmpireChef star’s restaurant empire, MAdE Establishment, folded in February with just a pitiful $ 389 in the bank and owed $ 22 million to creditors.
Yo-Chi, the up-market yogurt chain of Mr. Calombaris based in Melbourne, owes money to his failed restaurant business, ” The Daily Telegraph reported.
The liquidators with the task of raising money to pay creditors of MAdE and a $ 1.32 million pay and dues account have given up attempting to recover Yo-chi’s money because it has ‘minimal’ funds and has recoverable assets’.
George Calombaris has been caught in a new debt scandal with his up-market yogurt chain refusing to repay a $ 140,000 loan (pictured: George Calombaris and wife Natalie Tricarico)
Melbourne-based up-market yogurt chain Yo-Chi (pictured) owes the money to Mr. Calombaris’s failed company
The liquidators, KordaMentha, have been trying to recover the outstanding debts for MAdE since February 10.
MAdE Establishment, a once-thriving company, was ruined after a wage theft scandal last year.
The liquidators had hoped that the $ 140,000 debt that Yo-Chi could contribute to the funds would contribute, as the money was provided as an “intercompany loan.”
MAdE Establishment alone owes $ 9 million to the Commonwealth Bank, most of which will not be repaid.
“Yo-Chi has minimal cash and recoverable assets,” said the final liquidator report after correspondence with one of Yo-chi’s shareholders.
“In addition, Made Establishment’s claim is an unsecured creditor of Yo-Chi and we are aware of a secured creditor overriding Made Establishment’s claim in any formal insolvency proceedings.”
Founded by Calombaris, the Melbourne-based restaurant empire operates 18 locations, including the Press Club, Gazi and the Hellenic Republic (photo)
The announcement comes the same day that the former MasterChef judge marked the sale of his mansion (pictured) in Melbourne’s exclusive Toorak suburb
The liquidators have so far raised $ 820,000, including earning $ 222,000 through an online restaurant equipment and food inventory auction.
The Melbourne-based restaurant empire, founded by Calombaris, operated 18 locations, including the Press Club, Gazi and the Hellenic Republic.
The company had a dizzying array of intercompany loans – allowing companies to exchange money in the event of a shortage.
Their fortunes changed in July 2019 when it was revealed that it had underpaid personnel in the amount of $ 7.8 million.
Less than two years later, the company switched to voluntary administration, which meant the immediate closure of the 12 sites – with up to 500 employees losing their jobs.
Five have now been sold to new owners, leaving little hope for the remaining seven.
George Calombaris (photo) admitted that he was ‘devastated’ after his restaurant empire became voluntary government
The company had a complex web of debts to more than 200 small creditors, including food suppliers and traders, according to documents that Australian.
Business partner of Calombaris, millionaire Radek Sali, claims to owe $ 13.7 million.
The former MasterChef host said he was ‘devastated’ by the decision to close his empire taken on February 10.
“It is with great sadness and regret that MAdE Establishment was placed in voluntary administration today,” he wrote on social media.
“For all my team, I really regret that it has come this far. Personally, the past few months have been the most challenging I’ve ever experienced.
“Right now, while personally devastated, I continue to thank my family, friends, the MAdE team, our loyal and regular customers.
“I am so sorry that all our joint efforts have not yielded enough. I am shocked that it has come this far. ‘
The announcement came the same day that Calombaris marked the sale of his mansion in Melbourne’s exclusive Toorak suburb.
The house has five bedrooms, five bathrooms, a swimming pool, a private gym and a movie room.
The exclusive house (photo) has five bedrooms, five bathrooms, a swimming pool, its own gym and a movie room
Jimmy Grants’ Melbourne locations (pictured) have since been sold after MAdE Establishment was taken into management
A few weeks earlier, on Australia Day, Calombaris and his wife Natalie Tricarico sold their Mornington Peninsula vacation rental for $ 1.01 million at auction.
Calombaris’ hospitality empire was unveiled in July 2019 with an underpaid staff of $ 7.8 million.
The pay scandal was uncovered and reported by staff of Mr. Sali, who joined the company in 2016.
The $ 7.8 million in wages and layoffs of MAdE Establishment staff were paid back in 2019, but it destroyed the company’s reputation.
The Fair Work Ombudsman also hit the company with a $ 200,000 fine.
At the time, Calombaris told the 7:30 PM ABC program, “We’re not closing our restaurants, we’re here.”
Calombaris (photo, center) was a judge and host of the successful Network Ten show MasterChef from 2009 to 2019
Hellenic Republic in Brunswick, Melbourne, (photo) closed immediately after the company went down
Founded by Calombaris, the Melbourne-based restaurant empire operated 12 locations, including the Press Club, Gazi and Jimmy Grants (pictured)
“And it is my job as their leader to continue and speak this message, not shy of the mistake we have made, but also recognizing that we have resolved it.”
“I won’t forget that afternoon in 2017 when we were there with my new business associates after doing a full audit for the company and discovering the underpayments.”
The bosses said that if the company went down, the workers would get all the outstanding wages.
MAdE’s management, backed by former Swiss CEO Radek Sali, met with creditors before the announcement was made.
Craig Shepard and Leanne Chesser of the restructuring of KordaMentha were today named volunteer administrators of 22 companies in the MAdE Establishment Group, the consulting and investment company said in a statement.
“The deal doesn’t include the [smaller offshoot, yoghurt store] Yo-Chi activities that continue to trade. All other locations immediately stopped trading.
“Until the date of their appointment, the employees have received all outstanding wages and pensions.”
Timeline of Calombaris misery
MAY 15, 2014 – The Ministry of Health is investigating after diners eating in the Hellenic Republic in Kew fell ill. It was later confirmed that the norovirus affected about 100 people
APRIL, 2017 – It has been revealed that approximately $ 2.6 million in arrears has been paid to 162 Made Establishment employees due to pay differentials dating back to 2011.
MAY 10, 2017 – Calombaris is charged with assault during a fight with a 19-year-old in an A-League grand final between Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory in Sydney a few days earlier
MAY 16, 2017 – Melbourne man David Peter Schreuder sues the Hellenic Republic and Made Establishment group for outbreak of norovirus encephalitis
AUGUST 17, 2017 – The chief pleads guilty to attacks on the A-League incident
SEPTEMBER 8, 2017 – He delivers his Melbourne Victory No. 1 ticket in because of the attack
OCTOBER 20, 2017 – Calombaris is fined $ 1,000 for the A-League attack
FEB 1, 2018 – His assault conviction is overturned on appeal after a district court agreed with Calombaris’s lawyer that he had suffered material financial and personal harm and was unlikely to offend again
JULY 18, 2019 – The Fair Work Ombudsman fines the MasterChef Australia judge and his Made Establishment company $ 200,000 for underpaid staff in his restaurants by nearly $ 8 million
JULY 22, 2019 – Western Australian government suspends its tourism campaign with Calombaris over Fair Work Obudsman fine
JULY 23, 2019 – Calombaris and fellow judges Matt Preston and Gary Mehigan leave MasterChef after contract negotiations fail
FEBRUARY 10, 2020 – Reportedly, Made could fall into voluntary administration, jeopardizing the future of 500 employees in the 18 restaurants.