Agrimarche Ltd, Re [2010] EWHC 1655 (Ch) (05 July 2010) - directions for liquidator on valuation

Mr Justice Lewison has provided some directions on valuation for a liquidator in Re Agrimarche Ltd [2010] EWHC 1655 (Ch) (05 July 2010). The learned judge considered, inter alia, the value of commodity prices. Most of the discussion in the case hinges around this point. In relation to specific insolvency provisions the judge does note that, "I have not needed to embark on the question whether the principle in Ex p James Re Condon is excluded anyway on the ground that the liquidation is a creditors' voluntary liquidation. The Court of Appeal has decided that the principle does not apply to a liquidator in a creditors' voluntary liquidation on the ground that he is not an officer of the court: Re TH Knitwear (Wholesale) Ltd [1988] 1 Ch 275. The liquidation in the present case is such a liquidation. On the other hand the events which, at least potentially, bring the principle into play took place during the currency of the administration; and the administrators were officers of the court: Insolvency Act 1986 Sched B1 para 5. In Re TH Knitwear (Wholesale) Ltd Slade LJ said that in view of the uncertainty inherent in the principle, it should not be extended. Nevertheless, it would be odd if moving from administration to creditors' voluntary liquidation radically altered the standard of conduct to be expected of the office holder, particularly where there is no change in the identity of the office holder. But whether that is so can be left to a case in which it matters."