© AgMedia Inc.
by BETTER FARMING STAFF
Amounts listed as owing to those who held breeding contracts with the company or vendors range from a high of $1.5 million to a puzzling low of $0.
Susan Taves, PKI’s bankruptcy trustee and a senior vice president with BDO Dunwoody Limited’s Kitchener-Waterloo office says PKI’s former owner, Arlan Galbraith, submitted the amounts. She says a statement accompanying the submission explains the amounts were calculated by using contract holders’ initial investment to buy birds as a reference.
Galbraith and PKI signed multi-year contracts with growers yet his calculations show that he only owed what growers had originally invested. Galbraith treated the amounts owed “as an investment” rather than “a straight creditor accounts payable,” Taves says.
In several instances, the dollar value or an amount of 0 is used to recognize that a debt may be owed and to ensure creditors make the list. The exact amount isn’t known because PKI’s accounts payable sub-ledger weren’t updated before the collapse, she says. It’s therefore up to creditors to provide the trustee with their estimates of what is owed “and how they calculated that,” if they believe the amount to be reported is different than what is appears on the trustee’s website concerning PKI. Taves emphasizes that backup paperwork is needed to support a creditor’s claims.
The same approach has been used to identify any potential assets like the business’ bank accounts and therefore provide the trustee with the ability to freeze the accounts. While the accounting statement lists bank assets as $0, Taves says it’s not yet known how much is really there. “We don’t know if there’s anything there,” she says.
Taves says her office has fielded several calls from people wanting to understand what’s going on since PKI declared bankruptcy on June 2. BDO has responded by establishing a website to keep those involved informed.
The firm has also confirmed a meeting date for creditors. It will take place on July 30 at 10 a.m. at Bingeman’s in Kitchener.
A notice published on BDO’s website explains that to be eligible to vote at the meeting, creditors must first lodge proof of their claim with BDO. The company can be contacted at 519-570-4000.
On its website BDO has also noted plans to include a list of those who signed contracts with Galbraith before he incorporated PKI in 2007 once these contract holders become known. The firm states: “these individuals are not included as creditors of PKII as their claim is against Arlan Galbraith.” The firm “is not appointed and not handling any matters related to Arlan Galbraith personally.”
As many as 1,000 investors in four provinces and more than a dozen states, were caught with what bankruptcy officials say are worthless pigeons, when Galbraith’s pigeon breeding scheme collapsed in mid June.
Typically investors handed Galbraith or his company $100,000 each but in a few cases investments reached $1 million or more. Initial estimates put the amount owed by Galbraith’s company to creditors at $23 million and assets at $46,000. BF