Contractor goes bust, workers unpaid on $53m Coast project

A LEADING Sunshine Coast painting contractor, which contracted to a $53 million aged care and retirement development at Kawana, has been placed in external administration.

Freestyle S.C., trading as Coastgard, was subcontracted to McNab Construction and working on the Stockland eight-storey, 140-unit luxury Oceanside Retirement Village when it was placed in administration on Wednesday.

Workers for the company only became aware it was in trouble last Friday while others were only informed when they arrived at work Monday.

Company director Peter Ambler has been contacted for comment but to date has failed to return calls.

Paul Nogueira of Worrells Sunshine Coast was appointed administrator on Wednesday afternoon but said he would not have clarity as to Coastgard's debt exposure and true position until late Friday.

"I was appointed yesterday and hope to have an initial report to creditors by the end of the week on assets and liabilities," he said.

It is understood Coastgard was also contracted on the recently completed $22m Opal Aged Care which sits adjacent the Stockland retirement village.

The company also won the painting contract for the massive Youi headquarters at Sippy Downs.

Painter Shane Zeibell said he had been unaware of the company's problems until he arrived at work on Monday. He's out of pocket a week's wages but has quickly found other employment.

Renderer Kenny Hill who has worked on the Oceanside project since October last year said he had only become aware of Coastguard's problems in the past few days.

He's been left owed a total of $25,000, of which $18,500 is from his last 30-day account with the balance in variations and the past two weeks he has been on the job.

Up until now, Mr Hill said he had always been paid on time.

"Until then he's always been pretty good to me," he said of his three-year working relationship with Peter Ambler and Coastgard.

"He always crossed his T's and dotted his I's, had a paper trail and that gave me the confidence to work with him."

Mr Hill said he had made contact with Mr Ambler who had told him he had nothing.

VOTE NOW: Best child care centres in Gladstone

premium_icon VOTE NOW: Best child care centres in Gladstone

Voting open now: Winner to be announced later this week

Countdown on to Best in Business Awards

Countdown on to Best in Business Awards

Tickets for The Observer’s Best in Business Awards are ‘flying out the...

Chance to learn about biofuels

premium_icon Chance to learn about biofuels

Mercurius Australia is working on turning sugar waste into fuel and will be...