ASIC chairman Greg Medcraft notches his last big kill with user pays model

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Australian Securities and Investments Commission chairman Greg Medcraft mused last year on the difference between his work at the watchdog and his previous life as an investment banker saying: “I must say the culture is very different from Wall Street, where you get to eat what you kill.”



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With just six months remaining in the big chair, Medcraft notched up a big “kill” for the team with the passage through Parliament on Thursday of ASIC’s new user pays funding model. 

“This is an important milestone, not just for ASIC, but also for the companies and wider corporate sector that we regulate,” said a rather chuffed Medcraft. 

​ASIC plans to recover around $240 million of its costs from the industry next financial year with our big banks bearing the brunt of the levy. It must have seemed like a big deal before Scott Morrison showed the banks what a real bank levy looks like. 

As the super fund bosses said, it’s only fair since the banks generate all the trouble. 

“In the last five years there has been a whole range of scandals in the banking sector that have not occurred in the super funds,” said ISA boss, David Whiteley

It certainly gives Greg a bit more reason to relax as he heads off next Friday for a finance forum in Salzburg, Austria, while the Finance Minister Mathias ‘Girly Man’ Cormann whittles down the shortlist of candidates to replace him. 

Alf a male

There’s nothing like welcoming family back to the fold.

So it was great to see Taine Moufarrige rejoin his dad, Alf Moufarrige, and his brother, Marcus Moufarrige, back at the family shop, Servcorp. 

According to the release from Servcorp, Taine rejoins on July 1 having “assisted” company management since February when Marcus relocated to New York. 

Taine left the serviced office provider around six years ago to “spend more time with his young family”, and set up Nualight, a LED technology company, which he still runs – for the moment. 

Marcus let on, a few years back, that having that much family at work was not necessarily to Taine’s liking, given Alf still runs Servcorp with a tight grip. 

“Sometimes it blows up,” Marcus told the Murdoch rags of dad’s relationship with his offspring.

“In fact, my father and my brother [Taine] proved to be a little too similar and went head-to-head, so I became the family diplomat and quiet achiever,” said Marcus. 

“I learnt the skills to calm [Alf] down. He likes to be at the helm.”

At least they can all agree on politics. The brothers have continued the family’s longstanding tradition of donating copious amounts of money to the Liberal Party. This included a $140,000 top up last year. 

Oiled 

The Gina Rinehart-backed oil and gas explorer, Lakes Oil, has posted an update on how its attempts are going to sue the Victorian government for $2.7 billion over the decision to ban fracking. 

Chairman Chris Tonkin said the government’s team filed an application to have its legal action dismissed “on the grounds that the Fracking Ban Act prevents the proceedings from being successful”. 

Lakes said it has now amended its claim to contend that the act “specifically excludes from the moratorium any work commitments the company has under its existing exploration permits”. 

Given the way the Victorian government made mince meat of Tabcorp and Tatts’ poker machine licence claims, CBD is not sure we like Lakes’ chances. 

Cash dashed 

CBD can confirm that the dash for cash at Molopo Energy looks to have failed before a single vote is cast at next Tuesday’s shareholder meeting at the Westin Melbourne. 

Orders from the Takeovers Panel confirm it will be hard going for former corporate cop, Tony Hartnell, who was nominated as a boardroom raider by Farooq Khan, and banned company director, Nick Bolton.

The prize was the $67 million cash balance at Molopo which currently has a market value of around $36 million.

After declaring unacceptable circumstances earlier this month, the panel came out with orders this week compelling the Kahn and Bolton-backed Keybridge Capital – and Aurora Funds Management – to divest nearly half their combined stake in Molopo.   

The two companies are also prevented from voting these shares at next week’s meeting, which leaves them with 20.5 per cent of the company’s stock to vote to elect Hartnell and three other nominees. 

“The Molopo board thanks shareholders for their continued support and looks forward to seeing shareholders at the AGM, which will be a very important meeting regarding the future of your company,” said a Molopo statement to the ASX on Thursday. 

Follow CBD on Twitter. Got a tip? ckruger@fairfaxmedia.com.au



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