We got news this week that construction company Liviero had gone into business rescue in a difficult and untenable trading environment. The company calls itself "South Africa's largest privately black- owned multi-disciplinary construction group" following its majority acquisition by Mike Teke's Masimong less than three years ago. At the time of the transaction, the chairman of Masimong was quoted as saying its "acquisition of a controlling share in Liviero gives [it] direct exposure to a well-established business that has the size and scale to play a key role in critical growth sectors of the South African economy". Just 32 months later, the group's business units have individually filed for voluntary business rescue in order to be "afforded the time to reorganise their financial affairs" - code for "we have run out of money". This follows hot on the heels of 66-year- old Basil Read filing for business rescue last month, also due to liquidity issues. In March, its auditors, PwC, to...

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