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Alex Eliott

Partner
Johannesburg

Alex Eliott
Languages
English, Afrikaans
Practice Group
Finance

Alex Eliott’s practice focuses on business restructuring and insolvency. In addition to restructuring, he has extensive experience in general commercial litigation and sports law.

When it comes to unique solutions, Alex is at the forefront of finding them for his clients. Since the introduction of business rescue he has been the lead partner in some of the more significant matters in this field.

He represented the National Union of Metalworkers (NUMSA) in the first case where a trade union successfully placed an employer in business rescue, thereby saving jobs.

In another first, he acted for Reichmans in a business rescue scenario where the majority of creditors agreed to allow Reichmans to uplift its unsecured pre-commencement debt to secured status in return for the provision of post-commencement finance, without which the distressed business would have been liquidated.

Another unique scenario was the case of Blue Chip Mining, itself in business rescue, where through applications and counter-applications its largest debtor Kudumane Manganese Resources was forced into business rescue. This is the first case where a company in business rescue has placed its largest debtor in business rescue as method of debt collection.

“Alex Eliott is a popular figure in the market, and is applauded by sources for his detailed knowledge of the law. Clients also remark on his down-to-earth and likeable professional persona. One source observed: ‘He's very frank: if he thinks we're on a wild goose chase or that our approach is inappropriate, he'll tell us. Equally, if he thinks we're being too soft, he'll say so.’”

Chambers Global

Representative experience

Representing SARS (largest independent creditor with a claim of ZAR685m) in the business rescue of Highveld Steel and in tax litigation with business rescue practitioners.

Representing SARS in opposing an application by Russian shareholders to set aside the vote for a business rescue plan.

Representing ABSA and Standard Bank in various business rescue and insolvency matters.

Representing various major creditors and suppliers of Stuttafords, a major fashion retailer, in business rescue.

Acting for the business rescue practitioner of a FAIS registered company, the only current business rescue case in South Africa requiring FSB consultations.

Representing the business rescue practitioners of Shaft Sinkers SA in a global litigation matter, successfully opposing enforcement of an international arbitration award.

Representing NUMSA in a case where the judgment clarified that employment contracts are suspended when a liquidation order is granted, not at date of application.

Representing a Zimbabwean shareholder in bush camps in Zimbabwe and Botswana in his dispute with the other major shareholder, a British national based in Monaco.

Education and admissions

Education

  • Advanced Short Course in Business Rescue, University of South Africa
  • BBusSci (Hons) LLB, University of Cape Town
  • Diploma in Advanced Company Law, University of the Witwatersrand
  • Diploma in Insolvency Law and Practice, Rand Afrikaans University

Memberships

  • Director of Turnaround Management Association of Southern Africa (TMA); member of TMA's Executive Committee and Conduct Review Committee; regular contributor of articles published on TMA website.
  • Member of Editorial Board of Without Prejudice legal magazine (2007-present).
  • Member of South African Restructuring and Insolvency Practitioners Association (SARIPA); regular panel speaker on business rescue at SARIPA annual conferences.
  • Member of INSOL International.

Court admissions

  • South Africa

2017

Recommended for Restructuring/Insolvency

Chambers Global

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