Legal battles may have led to the Matthew Perrin’s downfall

More details have come to light about the dramatic events that led to the collapse of entrepreneur Matthew Perrin’s empire.

Perrin, who filed for bankruptcy two weeks ago with debts of $28 million, has blamed his downfall on troubles with his investment in a Chinese supermarket chain called Global Mart. 

But court documents obtained by the Courier Mail have shed more light on the problems with the Chinese investment, including a dispute over the purchase of two Chinese supermarket malls between companies associated with Perrin and property and finance group Orchard Capital Investments

According to the Courier Mail, Global Mart leased two supermarket malls from Orchard. Perrin and other parties set up a company in Mauritius called GCAM5 to buy the two malls from Orchard, which owned the shopping centres through a vehicle called Global Capital Asset Management (GCAM).

Perrin and associated companies raised more than $US70 million in investments and more than $US85 million in loans to buy the malls from GCAM and Orchard.

But the relationship between Orchard and the Perrin clan soured in 2007 when Orchard decided to sell its investments in GMAC to Perrin for $47.3 million. 

Orchard claimed Perrin had defaulted several times under the share sale agreement; Perrin countered with claims Orchard was trying to speed up the sale process and exit its Chinese investments.

Orchard and a company called GCAM2 (which is owned by GCAM) were listed as secured creditors of Perrin’s family company, Christie Pty Ltd.

The legal matters have now been dismissed, although they do highlight the complexity of Perrin’s empire and the challenges of doing business in China.


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