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Altech Computers blames credit insurance companies for its demise

Altech Computers blames credit insurance companies for its demise

The distributor instantly lost half of its turnover once credit cover was removed, MD Antony Sheen, said.

Antony Sheen - Managing Director Altech

Antony Sheen - Managing Director Altech

Distributor, Altech Computers, has pointed the finger at credit insurance companies for its demise.

Altech appointed administrators, Andrew Scott and Daniel Walley of PPB Advisory on December 3, after more than 18 years in business.

Altech managing director, Antony Sheen, said credit insurance companies were too negative, and when its credit cover was removed, the distributor instantly lost half of its turnover. He also cited personal issues with credit insurance provider, Euler Hermes.

“This heavily damaged our cash flow,” Sheen told ARN. “We did our best, but more insurers were scared and it was like a chain reaction.”

Sheen was hopeful in finding investors to take over the business, and hopes its Hong Kong branch won’t be impacted by the administration process in Australia and New Zealand. Altech maintained office and warehouse facilities in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Auckland and Hong Kong.

“Altech was always very successful and still can perform very well,” he said.

At the time of appointing administrators, the distributor had more than 15 staff to help keep the business going.

“It’s very sad we had to let go quite a lot of good staff, I really miss them and it was sad to lose them as part of the team,” he said.

Back in November 2013, the distributor made widespread sackings in an effort to move a majority of its business online, to help rein in costs.

The distributor lost several key contracts including Samsung, and at the time denied claims that major brands were placing the distributor on credit hold.

In 2004, Altech was recognised in BRW’s Fast 100, as the sixth fastest growing Australian company in 2004 and was featured again in 2006, citing turnover of more than $63 million in 2004/05 financial year.

In 2008, Altech scored Microsoft’s Australian Distributor partner of the year award, which was in recognition for its commitment to research and development for both component products and system assembly. It was also one of only three Microsoft OEM distributor’s in Australia and was an OEM customer for Intel and AMD.

At one point, Altech’s portfolio consisted of 60 vendors, primarily servicing three key markets such as entertainment, gaming and security.
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