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Financial reserves run dry for geophysical contractor

Approximately $8m (US dollars) has been recovered to date by liquidators of a geophysical contractor which carried out seismic data surveys in the search for hidden reserves of gas and oil under the world's seas.

The recovery services arm of Smith & Williamson, the accountancy and investment management group, is winding up the financial affairs of RXT (UK) Ltd; RXT stands for Reservoir Exploration Technology.

Unsecured creditors will start to see some of their money flow back following work by Greg Palfrey, and his team at the South Coast office of Smith & Williamson in Southampton, Hampshire.

RXT (UK) Ltd is a wholly-owned subsidiary of parent company Reservoir Exploration Technology ASA, which was headquartered in Lysaker, Norway, and was established in 2002 before being listed on the Norwegian stock market.

RXT ASA filed for bankruptcy protection in Norway last June after encountering unforeseen operational difficulties and failing to attract a long-term industrial partner following a group restructuring.

RXT (UK) Ltd was placed into liquidation by Smith & Williamson in September 2013.

Mr Palfrey said: "There is a truly international dimension to this case;  RXT's vessels were active in the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic, North Sea, Caspian Sea and Irish Sea, providing the oil and gas industry with seismic seabed surveys and related services, such as cabling surveys.

"The difficulties faced by the group, which provided high-quality data and had an excellent reputation in the energy industry, were well documented in its group accounts.

"Following painstaking work, we are in the process of realising monies from assets, with $8m US dollars recovered to date. He added: "This particular case shows how diverse our workload is here in Southampton, from local and regional cases involving the retail motor trade, civil engineering, printing and the private school sector to companies with a global footprint."

Smith & Williamson was appointed in conjunction with its Norwegian associates, after its work on recoveries, often in complicated cases, was recommended following a series of international conferences attended by insolvency experts.



By necessity, this briefing can only provide a short overview and it is essential to seek professional advice before applying the contents of this article. No responsibility can be taken for any loss arising from action taken or refrained from on the basis of this publication. Details correct at time of writing.

Smith & Williamson LLP
Regulated by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales for a range of investment business activities. A member of Nexia International.

Nexia Smith & Williamson Audit Limited
Registered to carry on audit work and regulated by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales for a range of Investment business activities. A member of Nexia International.