Ross Asset Management Ltd., a closely held New Zealand-based share investor, owes clients about NZ$450 million ($365 million) after collapsing, according to receivers PricewaterhouseCoopers.
About NZ$10.2 million of investments have been identified, and about 1,720 customers are affected, John Fisk and David Bridgman of PricewaterhouseCoopers, said in an e-mailed statement. The pair were appointed as receivers and managers last week by the Financial Markets Authority after complaints from investors.
“There is a significant gap between the identified market value of the group’s investments as against the amounts in investors’ portfolios,” the receivers said. “Analysis to date indicates it is likely historical returns advised to investors are exaggerated and may possibly be fictitious.”
Investigations are hampered because many of the investment decisions were made by sole director David Ross, who is hospitalized and unable to assist, they said. His group is insolvent, and an urgent recovery strategy is needed to maximize investor interests, they said.
A lawyer who represented Ross in court last week didn’t immediately respond to an e-mailed request for comment.