Residents signed up to take part in next month’s Miss Muddy fundraiser have been left furious after the company behind the event went into liquidation.
Events Move Enterprises announced on Tuesday afternoon that it had ceased operations after being placed into the hands of liquidators.
The event was scheduled for November 10 at the Henty Machinery Filed Days site after the town won the wildcard entry last year.
The liquidators will contact all creditors (including registrants) within five business days.
Each participant paid between $70–$90 for entry into the event.
In a statement, the company said: “Unfortunately, the upcoming Miss Muddy events have been cancelled and there are no funds available to enable refunds for the upcoming events”.
“We sincerely apologise for this outcome,” the statement reads.
Henty was one of five upcoming Miss Muddy events across the country, including Melbourne and Brisbane.
Events Move Enterprises managing director Allan Turner apologised to all involved.
“I am personally and truly sorry for everything that has happened between July 1 and October 9, 2018,” Mr Turner said.
“It is my fault, I take full blame.
“We didn’t take over the event thinking we’d close it in 90 days.
“It hurts us to be in this position – we left it right up until last night to try to save it, but it just didn’t happen.”
“It hurts us to be in this position – we left it right up until last night to try to save it, but it just didn’t happen.Allan Turner, managing director of Events Move Enterprises
Mr Turner bought Miss Muddy in July 2018 from Fun Events and ran it under Events Move Enterprises.
“It has only been three months since we took over and since then, it simply came down to cash flow in versus cash flow going out to run this business and to obtain income to run the four remaining Miss Muddy events.
“It just did not add up or work for us.”
The organisation had to sell more than 8000 tickets from July 1 to pay for the Henty event to run.
However, it sold only 2600.
The last four events – Brisbane, Hunter, Henty and Melbourne – had an overall budget of $507,000 to run.
“Still, we would not have made a profit,” Mr Turner said.
“It just was not going to happen in the end and we tried everything to save this event.”
Mr Turner declined to disclose who the liquidators were.
Disappointment for Henty
Henty Machinery Field Days executive officer Belinda Anderson said the news was “an unfortunate situation that we all find ourselves in”.
“One that we certainly could not have predicted,” Ms Anderson said.
“Henty Machinery Field Days is an organisation with a long and proud history of providing an event that showcases the agricultural industry to the nation.
“Miss Muddy was the perfect fit for our site – a proven event with a fun filled day out for women in the regions surrounding Henty.
“Our local community groups were ready to cater, man the bar, park the cars and keep things on site clean and tidy to create an enjoyable experience for all.
“The loss of income for these groups, the town of Henty and Henty Machinery Field Days is disappointing.”
Greater Hume Council mayor Heather Wilton said the news was disappointing “not just for the town, but for the region”.
“It’s disappointing for those who like to participate in those activities, and it would have brought economic opportunities to this town,” Cr Wilton said.
“It’s happened, there’s not a lot we can do about it.”
Asked if Events Move Enterprises contacted the council for help, Cr Wilton said they did not.
“To my knowledge, it was contacts mostly with property owners surrounding the venue,” she said.
Mr Turner also established Zaidee’s Rainbow Foundation, a charity (separate entity to Events Move Enterprises) formed after his seven-year-old daughter, Zaidee, died from a burst blood vessel in her brain.
The charity raises awareness about organ and tissue donations.
Mr Turner said the foundation purchased another obstacle event and “ran that very successfully in March 2018, which then led us onto Miss Muddy”.
He said criticism should be directed at Events Move Enterprises and not Zaidee’s Rainbow Foundation.
Full media statement by Miss Muddy