In a story that ran in the Owen Sound Sun Times newspaper by writer Scott Dunn, we have learned that Grew Manufacturing is now in receivership.

 

According to the story, available online, the company has liabilities of more than $2 million and about 100 creditors. Grew Manufacturing's assets are now in the care of a receiver who is looking for a buyer. The receiver is BDO Canada Limited and Bill Courage is handling the sale.

 

The story went on to say that the Grew boat company's manufacturing plant south of Owen Sound has been idle for three months since Grew president David Cameron shot and wounded an employee there, then ended his own life in an armed confrontation with police Feb. 21 near Kemble.

 

A London, Ont. commercial court judge on May 10 granted the Business Development Bank of Canada's application to place two numbered companies into receivership.

 

1673747 Ontario Inc. operated as Grew Manufacturing, while 2045227 Ontario Ltd. operated, Courage thinks, as Profisher or Profisher Direct.

 

Grew, Cutter and Profisher are brands of boats made by the companies, he said in an interview from his Owen Sound office.

 

Courage said that BDC, a secured creditor, made the application after first trying to work with Cameron's family.

 

"Eventually the family was unable to continue the business and was unsuccessful in their attempts to sell it," Courage said. "Our goal is to try and sell the business and try and save the jobs, albeit nobody's worked for three months."

 

Courage said there are no guarantees that the company will continue, let alone will remain in Owen Sound once the assets are sold. He said he expects an outcome in two months or more.

 

A notice will be published in The Sun Times soliciting interest in the assets.

 

Courage has had some preliminary interest already. The land, buildings, equipment, inventory, boats, trailers and scrap are among the assets for sale.

 

The Grew name and fiberglass boat moulds were purchased by Cameron from a Penetanguishene company some years ago and those still have value, Courage said.

 

There's also a skilled workforce available here, should a buyer want to resume boat building.

 

Buyers at the Toronto and Hamilton boat shows placed orders and put down money but have not received a boat. Each will join the line of employees and other creditors if purchasers don't receive a boat, Courage said.

 

About 25 employees are owed wages, vacation pay, severance and termination pay, some of which may be recoverable under the federal Wage Earner Protection Program, funded partly by sale of assets under administration of the receiver and from federal coffers.

 

Amendments to bankruptcy and receivership legislation since July 2008 allow paying up to six months wages up to about $3,400, plus termination and severance pay.

 

Courage has other issues to address as part of overseeing Grew's receivership.

 

"The company has initiated a product liability suit against one of its suppliers. And at this point I haven't dug into it yet," he said.

 

 

 

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