Vocation class action


Update

Conditional settlement

On 30 November 2020, the parties to the class action announced that they had reached an agreement to settle the Vocation Class Action. Under the proposed agreement, the Respondents and Cross-Respondents will pay a total of $50 million, inclusive of interest and costs, to settle the claims of group members in the Vocation Class Action. The proposed settlement remains subject to Court approval.

A notice containing information about the settlement, as well as the rights of Group Members (Notice of Proposed Settlement) has been sent to Group Members who registered their claims in the Vocation Class Action and is also available for download on this website (see “Key documents” below).

What is the Vocation class action about?

The Vocation Class Action, is brought on behalf of the Applicant, Ms Cheryl Whittenbury, on her own behalf and on behalf of all persons who acquired shares in former education and training provider Vocation Limited (in liquidation) (Vocation) between 27 November 2013 and 4 December 2014.

The Applicant in the Vocation Limited Class Action alleges, among other things, that Vocation made misleading or deceptive statements in, and omitted information that was required to be disclosed in, its prospectus, contravened the continuous disclosure requirements of the Corporations Act 2001(Cth), or otherwise made statements that were misleading or deceptive, thereby causing loss to persons who acquired an interest in ordinary shares in Vocation shares during the period 27 November 2013 and 4 December 2014 (inclusive).

The Applicant also claims that Vocation’s former auditor, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), caused loss to group members by making certain statements while retained to carry out an audit of Vocation Limited’s FY2014 financial report.

The Applicant further alleges that certain of Vocation’s directors, namely Mark Hutchinson, John Dawkins and Manvinder Gréwal engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct.

PWC has filed cross-claims joining the following parties as cross-respondents to the proceeding:

  1. Vocation;
  2. Vocation’s former lawyers, the Partners of Johnson Winter and Slattery (JWS); and
  3. Certain of Vocation’s former officers and directors, Mark Hutchinson, Manvinder Gréwal, John Dawkins, Stephen Tucker, Michelle Tredenick and Douglas Halley (the Officers and Directors).

A number of the cross-respondents have also filed their own cross-claims, as follows:

  1. John Dawkins (Vocation’s former chair) filed a cross-claim against JWS;
  2. JWS filed a cross-claim against Vocation and the Officers and Directors; and
  3. Mark Hutchinson (Vocation’s former CEO) filed a cross-claim against JWS;
  4. Manvinder Gréwal (Vocation’s former CFO) filed a cross-claim against JWS.

More information about the Vocation Class Action can be found at www.vocationclassaction.com.au.

For further information please contact us on 1800 645 488 or vocationCA@mauriceblackburn.com.au.

Key documents

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