FOMO festival goes into liquidation leaving creditors in $5 million hole

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One of Australia’s biggest music festivals has gone into liquidation, leaving nearly $5 million owing to creditors.

FOMO, which this year brought mega-acts Brockhampton and Lizzo to Australia and in previous years has been headlined by the likes of Nicki Minaj, SZA and Post Malone, began as a small event in Brisbane in 2016 and has rapidly grown to one of the most anticipated festivals in the summer circuit.

The 2020 event played in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide in January and attracted crowds of more than 10,000 people in each city.

Documents lodged with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission last week reveal Fomo Festival PTY LTD owes $148,540.43 to three partly-secured creditors and nearly $5 million to unsecured creditors.

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The documents don’t reveal who the unsecured creditors are but it is understood the list includes artists, music promoters and venues.

According to the documents, the company has less than $4,000 in cash at the bank and $5,000 in other assets.

The liquidators, Hall Chadwick, will now begin investigating the company’s affairs. This is expected to include where the money from this year’s festival went.

Despite the timing, the coronavirus pandemic is unlikely to have played a major role in FOMO’s downfall. This year’s festival went ahead before social distancing restrictions were put in place and the Sydney event attracted 10,500 people despite the bushfire crisis.

However, it is the first major festival to collapse in what is a perilous time for the industry. Multiple events, including the popular Splendour in the Grass festival, have been postponed until later in the year or next year, while organisers for summer festivals have begun planning their events without being able to bring in international acts.

Organisers for Falls Festival, which takes place during the New Year period, have announced the next event will feature an all-Australian line-up.

All social media accounts related to FOMO have been removed and the event’s organisers, Jess and Anand Krishnaswamy, did not respond to requests for comment prior to publication.

Written by Nathanael Cooper for Sunday Morning Herald, originally published 20 May 2020, Source: https://www.smh.com.au/culture/music/fomo-festival-goes-into-liquidation-leaving-creditors-in-5-million-hole-20200520-p54uv4.html

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