New Zealand-based eco-travel agency, We Are Bamboo, faces heightened scrutiny as liquidators formally demand $780,000 from its director, Colin Salisbury. The beleaguered firm shuttered its operations in October 2022, leaving a path of pissed off prospects who misplaced hundreds of thousands in pay as you go deposits because of ill-fated cryptocurrency trades.
Colin Salisbury, additionally the director of We Are Bamboo, is beneath hearth as liquidators allege breaches of authorized duties, a declare he vehemently denies regardless of the monetary fallout that left quite a few prospects considerably out of pocket.
We Are Bamboo, headquartered in Decrease Hutt, aimed to supply ethically aware journey experiences by permitting prospects to ebook worldwide vacation packages with a singular part—volunteering in native communities. Nonetheless, the corporate’s closure, attributed partially to the influence of Covid-19, unleashed a wave of dissatisfaction amongst prospects.
When confronted with queries about refunding pay as you go funds for future holidays, the corporate cited the “power majeure” clause in its phrases and situations, denying prospects their anticipated reimbursements. The vast majority of affected prospects hailed from america, Britain, Canada, and Australia.
Earlier this yr, a report by BDO NZ liquidators unveiled that We Are Bamboo’s demise was precipitated by Colin Salisbury’s resolution to take a position over US$2 million ($3.24 million) of buyer funds into varied cryptocurrency platforms between October 2020 and mid-2022. The poor buying and selling choices and funds positioned in fraudulent platforms, which finally vanished, led to substantial monetary losses.
Opposite to earlier reviews indicating a whole loss, BDO’s newest findings reveal two “undisclosed” crypto platforms containing $11,143 value of cryptocurrencies. These platforms have been reportedly missed in the course of the preliminary investigation, and upon discovery, Salisbury promptly transferred the remaining steadiness to the liquidators’ belief account.
BDO has acquired a staggering 1193 claims towards We Are Bamboo, totaling over $4.2 million, with the common declare standing at $3557. The liquidators describe the investigation as “tough and time-intensive,” citing Salisbury’s use of crypto platforms that lacked a traceable transaction historical past.
Along with looking for the restoration of property, BDO is exploring two avenues for retrieving funds. The primary includes a possible “clawback” of funds made to Salisbury beneath the Firms Act 1993. The second avenue investigates whether or not Salisbury breached his director’s duties, including one other layer of authorized scrutiny.
The formal demand from BDO, amounting to $781,187, underscores the gravity of the monetary mismanagement surrounding We Are Bamboo, leaving Salisbury entangled in a authorized battle because the repercussions of the cryptocurrency debacle proceed to unfold.